How to…Have a Perfectly Imperfect Life

I live and I breathe Rock n Roll Bride. It is my life. It is my biggest passion. It is my obsession. I know from reading the hundreds of submissions and emails I receive from you all that you live and breathe it too. You ‘get’ it. You believe in it and you love the ideas behind it. But you know what, I have a confession. I sometimes feel like a fraud.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll read a lot of blogs religiously. You’ll pour over the beautiful people and their stunning weddings on Style Me Pretty, their effortlessly cool homes on Design Sponge and their awesomely unique design and style ideas on Etsy. We love to read these sites for ‘inspiration’ but secretly, don’t they make us feel a little bit like a failure? Do you ever read blogs and think “I’m not beautiful enough”? Do you ever wish you had more to spend on your wedding? Do you ever wish you lived in one of those achingly cool, funky and stylish apartments?

Yeah, me too.

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re planning (or have planned) a Rock n Roll wedding but sometimes, just sometimes, do you ever get that teeny tiny little twinge of the green eyed monster when you see that size zero blonde with her perfectly gorgeous husband and their perfectly stylish Martha Stewart wedding? I bet she didn’t sit up until 2am making stationery or hunting for months to find a dress that didn’t make her look like a blancmange. I bet she didn’t look at hundreds of photographers’ blogs desperately searching for one that could capture her wedding whilst coming in nicely under budget. I bet she knew exactly where to look and who to book, and of course I bet she got her first choices on everything.

You know this already but I’m going to reiterate it if it kills me what you see on the internet isn’t real. What you see in magazines isn’t real. What you see of other people’s lives isn’t real, it’s what they want you to see – and none of what you see makes them any better than you or their wedding any better than yours.Having a blog-perfect wedding isn’t what makes the day the most special, perfect or magical. The most popular ‘rockstar ‘photographer and the Vera Wang dress don’t make the wedding special. YOU make your wedding special.

You and your fiancé who argue sometimes

You and your fiancé who don’t fit the glossy magazine ideal of what’s beautiful

You who obsesses over diy-ing the whole damn thing because you know only you can make it the way you want it

I know you know this already, but I also know that deep down you sometimes look at other brides and other weddings and feel like you’re having a substandard wedding.

On the flipside (and this was something I was seriously guilty of when we planned our wedding) you look at weddings on sites like Rock n Roll Bride and think “Oh their wedding is so much cooler than mine. I’m not that alternative. I’m not that unique or creative. My wedding isn’t Rock n Roll enough.” This is something I’ve written about before but again I’m going to reiterate it quickly here – having the most alternative or Rock n Roll wedding doesn’t make you better/happier/cooler than anybody else. A Rock n Roll Bride isn’t just someone with loads of tattoos wearing the most awesome dress. Being Rock n Roll is about being YOU. Be proud of who you are and planning the wedding that’s perfect for YOU. Forget what the magazines tell you. Magazines aren’t real life.

So why did I start to write this today? Well firstly I read an amazing article on Princess Lasertron’s blog. Someone who, I’ll be honest, I’ve always seen as having it all sorted – gorgeous husband, fabulous office, happy baby and crazy amounts of talent, style and popularity to boot. The article, Things I Don’t Want People to Know, really made me realise that however you view someone, that an online portrayal really isn’t the whole story. I loved reading her list and it really did make me think “Wow, I bet the whole world thinks like this. I bet all those bloggers I aspire to are just as confused and scared as me.”

That size zero blonde or that enviously alternative bride haven’t got it all sussed. Online, and in their weddings, people share the part of themselves that they want to, the part they want the world to see. The rest, like all of us, they keep hidden away.

So how about me? Have I got it all figured out? I’ve got a popular blog read by thousands of people all over the world. I shop a lot. I’ve got gorgeous kittens and a doting husband right? Well yes – but of course this is the part I want you to see. I exaggerate the good and hide the not so good. I’m not saying I don’t really live and breathe what I express on my blog, but there are certainly the things I keep to myself. Well until now. This is the real me…

I always think I’m fat.
I constantly compare myself to others.
Our house is always messy, needs a clean and has diy jobs that need doing. I get embarrassed if anyone, even my Mum, comes over.
I don’t have that many real life (as in non-wedding) friends…and I don’t see them enough.
I don’t have a creative talent of my own. I’m not artistic and I desperately want to be.
Most days I don’t get dressed until gone 3pm.
Everyday I wake up and feel like a fraud and like I have no idea what I’m doing.
I nag my husband to do make changes to my blog and we argue about it.
I’m a perfectionist and I’m bossy to boot.
Even though the blog is going well I still work a part time job at the weekend because I’m scared it might all collapse one day.
I work 7 days a week and we haven’t had a holiday since our Honeymoon at the beginning of 2008.

Does this sound like someone with a perfect life, who’s got it all sussed? Certainly not.

So, will your wedding be perfect? Probably not.
Will your wedding be perfect for you? Hell yes.

Go and create that perfect-for-you wedding and life and screw what you think the rest of the world is up to.

236 comments

  1. Shell

    So wonderfully put. I am planning an elopement with my Fiance this October and getting so many idea’s from this blog.
    I think your submission just literally put it into perspective for me.
    I do not need to do anything traditional and can create pieces that fit together that balances US out. And I do not need to spend a fortune. That is what rock and roll is all about, right?
    I think I am finally getting excited for once.

    🙂

  2. Erika

    Wow! This is the first time I’ve discovered your blog, and what a PERFECT way to set the tone. Thanks for this. Every now and then it is nice to gain perspective, and to be able to relate…ESPECIALLY in this crazy world of wedding planning. LOVE this.

    P.S. your hair is rockin’ btw. Awesome.

  3. I got married at the tender age of 39 in my living room, which was filled with helium balloons, ribbons flowing down from the ceiling like a giant jellyfish was a witness. We loved it. Only six people there including us–we didn’t need a huge crew of people to bear witness. We just wanted to do it. It was just wonderful, and I wouldn’t do a big wedding for all the money in the world. I wore a Chinese embroidered empire coat and leggings, (the empire coat had good luck bats all over it). What a day. Best day of my life. Go into it with how YOU feel, and your mate feels. Those massive money hole weddings of yore nearly always ended in divorce. Screw them. Do your own thing. We had a small Mexican style supper, and toasted with blue Mexican glasses. It felt so perfect!

  4. Leah Jones

    I love it. I am a poser. I’m not creative, and I tend to be a little more traditional. It’s not like I want to be. I would love to be a rock star , but I am certainly not. I wanted my wedding to be freaking awesome and nothing traditional at all. It’s just not me. This post has helped me realize that it’s okay to be traditional because traditional is me.

  5. Jen Hamilton

    A huge, heartfelt THANK YOU for writing this! I’m just starting to sift through all the wedding planning stuff, then stumbled on your blog and all the worry and “I’m not really into this but it’s tradition so guess I have to” just dissipated. I *will* have a barefoot beach wedding with a convoy of minis as wedding cars because that’s me, and a pouffy merangue dress really isn’t – but I’ll try not to be edgy just for the sake of it either!

    p.s. my house is always messy too…

  6. Great post Kat. I feel the same everyday… wondering why my life is the way it is… and why all the other women out there have such better lives than me!

    And I find it incredibly strange when people say to me ‘You’re like Super Mum… You run your own business, look after 2 children, run a playgroup and spend 6months alone while your partner works away… but your so sorted. You put me to shame.’ …. Huh what?!!

    I’m the biggest stress head out. I have major anxiety. I’m on anti-depressants. I’m an organisational nazi, which-to be completely honest – DOES NOT work when you have kids!! I am over-worked, underpaid & suffering from some serious sleep deprivation… I gave the playgroup up because they mothers there told me they didnt like me… and I spend most of the 6 months of the year that my partner is away working, BAWLING my eyes out! I also have NO IDEA how to relax!!!

    Reading this post was abit of a wake up call for me. So, THANKYOU for putting it up again for us to read. I needed it.

    xx

  7. K@

    Thank you. This is exactly what I needed to hear today. I’m in Disneyland for family holiday and if I hear one more time that I shouldn’t want my little wedding in the woods, but I MUST want a “princess wedding” I will puke in public. So thank you.

  8. Thanks for writing this. I could replace “brides” with “photographers” and “weddings” with “portfolios,” but regardless I should be happy with where I’m at and what I’m doing to make my life better. I needed this today. <3

  9. I LOVE THIS! Thanks Kat for sharing those niggley insecurities that we all have and are trained to keep hidden. My favourite people are the ones I don’t feel I have to pretend to be happy around. You’ve inspired me to do two things – send this to all my brides and write my own list!

  10. Hi Kat – I read rocknrollbride most days.. without being too gushy it was this blog and its pics of ‘selfish’ (more like self loving) brides that made me excited about getting married. i’ve been engaged for coming up 3 years and though i am so stoked on the being married.. the wedding has always made me crap my pants. anyways, thanks for providing an alternate perspective.. this particular entry has made me feel at peace.. not just with weddings.. but with life as it is. you’re a complete legend for speaking openly and honestly, rather then presenting the facade which would be so easy to do.

  11. I love this post. More than anything that I’ve ever read on any blog ever, I love this post. It totally sums up what I think about myself, and how some days I can get so upset over the little things that I have a strop and get nothing done. I’m self employed, I’m a perfectionist and I want to have everything my own way, but as you say Kat, life isn’t like that. My wedding has been a cause of great excitement for me, but I don’t get anywhere near the same enthusiasm from anyone else, which makes me feel crappy most days…but then my doting beautiful fiance reminds me that none of this matters, because, for the most part, we’re completely happy. That’s why this blog post made me cry a bit and smile a lot, because for the most part, being happy and finding someone that is your soul mate is better than getting the colour of the balloons, whether your Mum is going to comply with the dress code or whether your best mates actually like going to weddings in the first place. THANKS Kat for making my Saturday 🙂 x

  12. Hi, I just wanted to say thanks! I’ve just started my own business alongside working part time and looking after my little girl. I sometimes feel ridiculous and doomed to failure – your post made me’ realise that those people I’m talking to might not be quite so cool calm and collected as they seem and might even deign to stock my designs at some point! Glad lots of people feel similar to me it’s nice to know I’m not completely mad. P.s. Wish I’d found your blog before my wedding in 2008 so I could have directed any interfering people to it! X

  13. jamie

    I know I’m really late to this post… I just found your blog a few days ago and I’ve spent HOURS every night looking through all of the posts. I must admit, I’m obsessed. My fiance and I recently got engaged. This will be his third marriage, but my first. Before I get sidetracked talking about us, I want to say thank you. We’re both really into metal and want our wedding to be as awesomely hardcore as possible. …I was freaking out thinking “I’m never going to be able to plan it how he wants it, it’s not going to be cool enough for both of us” until I started reading your blog. No matter what happens, it’s going to be ‘our’ wedding. and it will be super crazy awesome to us, who give a ___ about what anyone else thinks.
    Again, thank you for having the best wedding site I’ve ever been to.

  14. Oh my god, I read this randomly, not in the wedding biz but follow you from Blogcademy: THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR WRITING THIS.
    Thank you thank you thank you.
    You. Seriously. Rock.
    Mega hugs from Italy xxx

  15. natalie

    I just want to say thankyou. For being so real and raw and having the guts to write this. I could have written it myself. You are amazing, keep doing what your doing. X

  16. Thank you for writing this ^^ I’m actually not really thinking about bridal stuff ( I personally think for myself that I’m too young) but I enjoy your blog I love the alternative wedding pictures it gives me inspiration and I love your style and personality 🙂

  17. Thank you, thank you for this reposting this. It has made me cry, mostly with relief that I’m not alone in feeling like a total fraud. The only thing I’ve ever wanted to do was write but I’ve always been so paralysed by fear of failure. When I got engaged I thought maybe ‘getting married’ could be the thing I write about. Instead I look at other people’s blogs and think everyone is so much cooler and more interesting than me. I love the quote ‘Comparison is an act of self violence’. I try so hard to remind myself of it but struggle to. Thank you for being a real person and reminding your readers that behind the effervescent coolness of Rock n Roll Bride, you are just like us, just trying to put one foot in front of the other. X

  18. Thanks for re-posting this! This is DEFINITELY something I needed to read today.

    And probably once a week forevermore to give myself that reminder that things on the internet are not always as they seem.

    I blame Instagram!! 🙂

  19. this is perfect! i love it. thank you for sharing, i specially feel like that now that i just move from half-way across the world, it’s this feeling that i dont fit in with a mix of high expectations i have for myself. i love your authenticity and passion, you’re such an inspiration!

  20. So darn good. A wedding that has love, laughter and an attitude of this is us and our day is imperfectly perfect wins every time over a perfectly manicured super styled detailed obsessed wedding. Nobody wants to put out their ‘flaws’ for the world to see so kudos to you being so open and showing us that’s it’s okay not to be perfect. Although I reckon perfect is boring anyway!

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