I had such an intense and jarring epiphany a few weeks ago that I just had to share it with you, bridey. Ready? So, I'm someone who is pretty awesome with kids. I always have been (even before I had my own)... Maybe it's because I'm really a kid at heart or maybe it's simply an innate character trait, but kids like (more like love) me. I mean... I play hard, I'm not afraid to get dirty, I protect them from getting hurt, and I feed them. That's really all it takes... Just be present, be fun and be awesome, right?! Yeah! And then it dawned on me... Holy fuck, I'm a giant wedding-planner-babysitter. And, you know what? I'm fucking fantastic at juggling both of these hats. However, it's not too difficult considering that the similarities are profound. Actually, the similarities are borderline shocking.
I spend hours, day and night, taking care of women (and men) getting married; facing a life changing event, a coming of age if you will, and treating them ever so carefully and kindly. I play hard, I'm not afraid to get dirty, I protect them and I feed them (although it's usually with boozey cocktails). It's 100% the same! When I work with a bride (and groom) I am extremely gentle and patient. I listen wholeheartedly, try to put myself in their position so that I can absorb their perspective, and I do this in a way that greatly surpasses any other kind of gentleness and patience I have in any other relationships in my life; except for that of my children.
The epiphany started when I was approached to mentor a woman looking to get into the masochist world of wedding and event planning. After I resisted the overwhelming urge of telling her to run away and never look back, I agreed to help her learn about wedding planning first hand, so she could determine if this was a world she'd willingly step in to... I told her that I'd be happy to help. (I also told her that if she wanted a family down the road, then perhaps she should look at a different career.) Anyway, that's when my epiphany began to surface... Because this chick? She's a gregarious, sweet and enthusiastic gymnastics teacher. She's fantastic with kids!! And, that's when I thought, "She will be a natural in this business because she's great with kids, so she'd be perfect for a bride."
Think about it... As a gymnastics instructor and as a wedding planner, we're both programed to coach, not to quit. We tell the kids and brides in our lives to walk away when you're frustrated, but don't quit... Keep going. Keep pushing, and then come back with fresh eyes. We constantly remind them that not everything needs to get accomplished today, just break the process down into small, accomplishable pieces instead of focusing on how difficult the overall task (or routine) is. We remind them to focus on the big picture, and we remind them how wonderful they are. Brides and children alike need positive reinforcement, and the two of us? Well, we oblige.
So, will this chick be a good fit? My gut says 100%! But, I'll let you know for sure after the wedding...
Image via Bobka Baby and Bridal