You’re engaged and in a state of unending bliss. You and your beloved spend your evenings snuggling on the sofa, arms interlocked and sipping from each other’s champagne flute as the details of your wedding just -somehow, magically- all fall into place. Life is perfect.

Or this.

Within any given day, you experience some or all of the following: breathless excitement, fury, crying jags, clutching anxiety, confusion. You are not a bridezilla. You have not been planning this wedding since you were three and Barbie and Ken were your role models for love. You want a simple, meaningful shenanigan-free wedding and you have somehow ended up a crazy person.

If you have wise people in your circle-of-trust, they will tell you this is normal. They will suggest you read books like Sheryl Paul’s “The Conscious Bride” (thank you, Carissa Templeton!) and counsel you on the complexity of times of transition. You may have noticed some of your nearest and dearest are under the impression that your wedding day is about them and must include x, y, and z. So, how do you stay sane and joyful amidst the chaos of planning and the expectations of others?

“Discipline” yourself: Remember being sent to your time out corner? Send yourself (and your partner) there and declare “no wedding talk” zones. Set a weekly movie date, take long walks with the dog together, turn off your ringer and play Scrabble (our go-to, as pictured); whatever you two do that brings you back to you.

Delegate: If you haven’t honed this skill, now’s your moment. Even (especially!) if you’re a Type A/I’ll-do-it-myself kinda gal (or fellow), look over your “to do” list and find things that don’t require your input and ask for/accept offers of help. Not only will this reduce your workload, it has the added benefit of letting people who love you be a bigger part of your event.

Self-reflect: Take time to reflect on what getting married means to you. Create a “mission statement” that captures the bigger purpose of your wedding, and when your great-aunt Mildred demands to meet (again) to discuss the table centerpieces, say it to yourself like a mantra.

Remember, any and all feelings that come up are normal. Be good to yourself and allow yourself as much room as possible to feel your feelings without judgment. It’s a time like no other, for better and for worse, and it is for something wonderful. Just as pregnancy and labor lead to a precious baby, you’re “birthing” a beautiful marriage that’s yours and yours alone.