You planned, you stressed, and you wed. The “I dos” were said, the cake was cut, and the dancing was epic. But now that the big day has come and gone, what’s next??
Weddings are so much more than a giant one-day celebration. They’re Day One of a marriage and the beginning of a new future. So in this series, we’ll be exploring couples beyond their weddings. What do they remember most about their big day? What do they wish that they could have done differently? And what advice would they give to those just beginning this journey?
Our Wedding Rewind couples, at 10+ years of marriage, can hopefully provide a wealth of knowledge, experience, and perspective to our clients as they begin wedding planning of their own. We’ll ask the same questions of both partners (separately, of course!) to see how their answers compare.
Maryann & Mike – 46 Years of Marriage
Where and when did you get married?
Maryann: We were married on August 31, 1974. The ceremony was at St. Mary’s Church with the reception afterwards at Niederstein’s Restaurant, a nearly 150-year-old German restaurant in Queens, NY that was only recently demolished.
Mike: The wedding was 46 years ago on August 31, 1974. The mass took place at St. Mary’s in Woodside, Queens, NY with the reception at Niederstein’s in Middle Village, Queens.
How long had you known your spouse and how long was your engagement at the time of your wedding?
Maryann: We had known one another for 4 years, and we’d been engaged for 8 months on our wedding day.
Mike: I’d known Maryann about 12-18 months before we started dating. We started “going steady” on June 25, 1971, and we were engaged on December 24, 1973.
Are there any trends that you’ve noticed when attending weddings today that you wish had been popular when you got married?
Maryann: All the basics that make a wedding day special and meaningful have really remained the same – the vows, the cake cutting, the first dances. I don’t think there are any new trends that would have made our wedding day any more special or memorable than it was.
Mike: There aren’t any trends that I would wish to incorporate. Anything that’s become popular in the 46 years since we’ve been married may be fun or photograph well, but it doesn’t necessarily make a wedding more significant or a marriage last longer.
Are there any currently popular wedding trends that you dislike or don’t understand?
Maryann: I’m not a big fan of first looks. I’ll never forget walking down the aisle and seeing Mike for the very first time in front of all our loved ones. That’s a special moment that I hope every couple gets to experience. There’s also not a lot of attention given to the ceremony these days. It’s the moment when you exchange vows and commit yourself to one another and is the most important part of the day, as opposed to the party that follows.
Mike: Weddings have become a contest. We have to outdo the last person that got married. I don’t think I would survive planning a wedding today.
What’s your biggest regret when looking back on your wedding day?
Maryann: I was never really able to relax on our wedding day. I wish I could go back, relax, and truly enjoy the day more.
Mike: I’m not sure that I would choose the turkey dinner as the entrée for our guests again. Other than that, nothing.
What single moment from your wedding day will stick with you forever as your very favorite?
Maryann: Nothing can top our first dance as husband and wife.
Mike: I’ll never forget seeing my wife walk down the aisle of the church.
What’s the key to a long and happy marriage?
Maryann: It’s important to truly like the person you marry and enjoy spending time with them. A marriage is made of all the moments following the wedding, not the one day spent partying. So if you can’t see yourself spending innumerable years together as just the two of you, it’s probably not a good match.
Mike: This is a tough one as there are so many variables. Mostly, you both have to want to make it work. You have to want to solve problems, no matter what they are or how big they may seem. Nowadays, it’s easy to give up and go your separate ways.