If I am to put into consideration all the weddings I have attended since ‘owambes’ (popular word for Nigerian wedding parties) entered my vocabulary, I would say the wedding vows are what set the stage for the whole thing to make it memorable and you may add the ‘kiss the bride’ part.
The vows makes a wedding unforgettable and emotional especially if the couple were so passionate and cute about it. The good food, venue, decoration, cake and dress are a banger no doubt, but it’s only the vows that make people understand why they are there in the first place to celebrate love finding its fulfillment and recognition in a lifelong commitment.
Admittedly, trying to put words into exactly how one feels for your vows can be quite overwhelming. But hey, you don’t have to be a great writer to pull off a heartfelt one. Some of the tips are:
Write your vows early (and write it more than once):
You wouldn’t want to write your vows on the day before the D-day to avoid writing words you don’t really mean nor feel convinced about. Just like every part of wedding planning, attention to detail requires early attention and preparation. Save yourself unnecessary stress and write as early as a month or two months before your wedding day. Avoid shoddy stories like, ‘oh I totally forgot about my vows due to wedding hassles’, write early and write more than the required length for the first stage.
Let the type of wedding reflect in your vows:
Know the rules to follow upfront before writing your vows especially in traditional (church) wedding instances where the officiant may require you say all the words in a traditional vows with not enough time for you to add your personal touch. Would it be a romantic, personal, religious or humorous kind of vow? Decide with your partner and own your vows, after all, it’s your wedding, your vows remember?
Decide with your partner if you would be writing separately or together:
Will you show your partner before the wedding to agree on what you both want in the vows or do you intend to keep it a secret and surprise the partner with your beautiful vows?
Ponder about your relationship and write:
Ponder on what makes your relationship and your partner special to get inspiration on what to write. Think about the promises you’d want for your spouse, write down the memorable moments and pen them with beautiful words. You can also read books, poems, check online for inspiration to write nice words that speaks to your relationship.
Keep it Simple:
your guest would probably get bored from listening to lengthy vows and the meaning can easily get lost on them. Do not complicate things. No one expects you to write a novel to prove your love. Vows are meant to be brief and precise. Remember the golden rule-keep it short and simple!
The magic is in practice. Say your vows out loud in front of the mirror, to a best friend, and you can even record yourself to know how you’d sound like to your ‘crowd’. You may be like, ‘but it’s just a vow’ but to avoid rush of emotion or being overly nervous (esp. for the bride), practice well.
Spice with humor:
This is optional to avoid hurting feelings or making an unappreciated swipe at your Partner. However, this new trend can put a smile on your partner’s face and gain some chuckle from your guests, plus it’d be memorable. As a rule, just go over the top with it!
Don’t be so hard on yourself:
Relax, it’s not an inaugural speech. Loosen up and say your vows in a way that is sound and true to you and your partner. Poetic, romantic, humorous, touching or not, so far it comes from your heart, surely, your partner would appreciate it.