When you planned a big white wedding with all your friends and family, the thought of you and your partner holding a baby in your arms was a far and distant dream. Suddenly, life has thrown you a curveball and the wedding you booked a few years in advance will now be as a family of three. You have a new addition to the family and a newborn baby in tow, and your wedding now feels like quite a daunting prospect! Getting married with a young baby or toddler can come with its fair share of challenges but it doesn’t mean you can’t still have the wedding experience you’ve always dreamed of!
Here are some tips for making a wedding with a baby go smoothly…
Recruit a helper!
Probably the most important one of all when having your baby at your wedding is to recruit a helper. You are going to need it and there is absolutely no shame in having someone on hand (ideally who isn’t part of the immediate wedding family) to watch your baby or take them for a nap or walk if they get restless.
Ideally, your helper needs to be someone they trust and feel comfortable with and whilst this would normally be a grandparent, aunty or best friend, try and build a relationship with another trusted friend or relative who is less concerned with missing crucial wedding moments. If your baby is comfortable in their presence, they are far less likely to get upset or cry for their Mom if they are taken out of sight.
Remember your Baby’s schedule
When planning your wedding, you may want to think carefully about the timing of key events during the day such as speeches, the actual ceremony and the taking of family photos. Whilst your baby’s routine is far from an exact science, particularly if your baby is young, the last thing you need is an overtired or extremely hungry child screaming at the crucial moment because they are overdue their feed or nap.
Choose a breastfeeding friendly dress
If you are breastfeeding, the last thing you will need is to have your friends slowly helping you untie your entire dress whilst your baby becomes more and more fractious. Think about dresses where you are still able to feed should you wish to do so, and accept that there may be regular times throughout the day where your child wants to nurse.
Alternatively, if your baby will take a bottle, consider expressing a few bottles before hand and practice before the big day with others feeding her in your absence. Making sure she is comfortable with someone other than yourself is key, and will provide some more flexibility if you are caught up when she wants to nurse.
Involve them in the day
Whilst a wedding with a newborn may be quite different to what you originally planned, you are a family of three now, and as such, it’s perfectly acceptable to include them in your day.
How amazing will it be to show they the photos when they are older and say they shared the special moments with you? Involve them in the day as much as you can, whether that’s a highchair or bouncer next to the head table whilst you eat, an adorable inclusion in the photoshoot or even bringing them in on your first dance. Rethinking your wedding and making it work for your personal situation is key.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself
Last but not least, expect the unexpected. Life with a newborn is super hard to predict, so don’t put too much pressure on yourself for everything to be perfect. Whilst you can prepare as much as you can in advance (including lots of diapers, changes of clothes and even a stroller in case they need an emergency sleep inducing walk around the block), they are after all just a baby. Accept that parts of your day may need to be a little more fluid – your guests will fully expect it too!
You can find tips for getting married during pregnancy here.