The Terrible Twos and the Wedding March
Somewhere, tucked away in your parent’s photo albums, there probably exists a picture of you as a child—the star of someone else’s wedding. There you were, in your pastel pink dress with the shoulder pads and arm poofs, or rocking your baby blue tux and a grin. The pictures show you working your way down the aisle, either in tears or the life of the party.
And hilarious either way.
For as long as anyone can remember, flower girls and ring bearers have been a highlight of the wedding ceremony. And while more couples are opting to go child-free for the ceremony and reception these days, it’s still far and away the majority who opt to have little helpers leading the wedding march.
Sure, some couples are trading out the kids for animal friends to take on those duties—but that’s another article for another day.
Still, despite how common it is to have an adorable flower girl or a dapper ring bearer on your big day, plenty of brides (not to mention, the parents of the appointed) worry that their littlest wedding party members won’t be up to the task.
What if the flower girl freaks out when she sees the crowd and runs off in the other direction?
What if the ring bearer breaks down in tears and refuses to move?
What if they both stick a finger right up their noses when all eyes are on them?
These are common fears of all brides to be, but from years of experience, I can tell you—it doesn’t matter. No matter what your flower girls and ring bearers do, whether they completely steal the show, or they melt down into a puddle of tears in the middle of the aisle, it will be adorable.
And the pictures will be priceless.
When it comes to toddlers, you don’t always have a ton of control. And accepting that is half the battle. But you can help to set them up for success by practicing the wedding march a few times together the day of. Turn on the music and instruct them on exactly where to go, so that they feel more comfortable when go-time actually arrives.
Beyond practice, making sure your littlest marchers are well fed and well rested is one of the best ways to avoid a meltdown. Keep plenty of snacks on hand, and talk to their parents about standard nap times so that you can hopefully accommodate a bit of rest at some point on the big day. Even if that means mom and dad trying to put their toddlers down for a nap in the church pews a few hours before the ceremony begins—those pictures would also be well worth taking!
Then, when the time comes for the music to begin, just make sure mom or dad or on hand to deal with any last minute freak outs, and trust that whatever happens—it will still be perfect.
Because it will be. When kids do something unexpected, even when that unexpected thing is throwing a fit, people talk about it and laugh. And when kids nail their role, hamming it up all the way down the aisle, people talk and laugh about that as well.
The point is, as unpredictable as kids can be—their unpredictability is part of what makes them so great to have as part of your wedding party in the first place. They are fun to watch, and great for pictures. And their antics are often the most talked about of the night.
Plus, just wait until the reception starts—toddler make some of the best dance partners around!