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In a Wedding at 3 1/2 Weeks Post Partum

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I'm suppoed to be in my BIL's wedding 3 1/2 weeks after I deliver this baby by c-section.  It's my 4th, I've never gone into labor ahead of schedule before so I have no reason to believe I will this time.  


At about the same time post partum with my 2nd I spent the day on my feet with the baby in a wrap at a craft fair.


How do I handle this with my soon to be sister-in-law?  She's sweet and we have a very good relationship so far.  


This is what is going through my head.  The baby HAS to be with me that day.  I just will NOT do it any other way.  Too soon to be seperated for me.  I did introduce pumped milk in a bottle with my other 3 at this age and it always went well, but at this point it was always just so I could get out for a couple of hours, not for an entire day.  Besides, I'd have to pump every  couple of hours a most anyway... I've always been an OVER milk producer.


So I can bow out of being a bridesmaide, but I'll still want to have my hair and makeup done since I will be in family photos anyway.  It'll still be a VERY long day and a ton to juggle.  Then I can spend most of the day with the baby in my arms sitting outside of the reception hall etc.  


I can still be a bridesmaide and bring along a trusted friend to basically shadow me and take care of the baby while I do bridesmaide stuff.  SHE can sit outside of the reception etc. with the baby and text me when I'm needed.


Or, of course I can stay home... which is insanely depressing.   


So I guess I still want to be a bridesmaide.  Is that nuts?  How do I approach this with my BIL and his fiance?


Thank you!

post #2 of 13
I would just ask them what they prefer. I see no problem at all with you having a newborn at the wedding and attached to you most of the time, but ask the bride for sure.
post #3 of 13

Good for you, being ready to bounce back to social life so soon! I can only hope we are the same. Given that your energies are high so soon again, I think you need to at least go over the logistics of minimal separation from the baby, and to be willing to give the couple getting married the last word on details. 


I've been at weddings in which a babbling, crying baby was just a part of the family-filled scene, and some at which it was very awkward and uncomfortable to have a baby interrupting a solemn moment. I think it totally depends on your family, then, what it might be like for you. 


I would at least arrange certain times to have the baby in another room, like you suggested with a friend (who was already invited preferably). 


Again, depending on the family and the type of party, there might be more or less opportunity for quiet spaces to be set aside for your breastfeeding as well as other guest's desire to retreat. I've been to a few weddings now with a small sitting room or extra hotel room on the main floor that has been set aside as an extra space for such things. It's been a big hit at every wedding because there's always SOME demand for quiet retreat. 


It could be tough to ask for all that though, especially if this is a low-key event, and it's not likely the couple is springing for many extras. Then, asking for an extra guest, etc. would be over the top. 

post #4 of 13

It would depend on the Bridesmaid's dress? Can you bf in it? 

post #5 of 13
Honestly, I would probably back out of bridesmaid duties. It's up to you of course, but I think we tend to underestimate how tired and frazzled we'll be postpartum.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Bridesmaid desses haven't been chosen yet. She's going for black cocktail dress probably with spaghetti straps. I'm not overly concerned with nursing in a dress. I've done it.

I'm a wedding photog and I've worked at the reception venue. There are multiple places to go if quiet is nedded.

I can't imagine this wedding being very solemn but I imagine the baby would sleep through the ceremony or if that isn't happening then he/she could be in another room with the person I bring to help.

As far as bouncing back... well... if I'm not in the wedding it'll still be a 12 plus hour day with no help. If I'm in it at least I have a reason to bring help. I can't imagine not attending. I've known my BIL since he was 8. I'd be so depressed to miss it. Sometimes you just gotta do what ya gotta do. Will I be beyond exhuasted? Either way yes.

As far as asking them to spring for an extra guest... I have no issue with it. The have PLENTY of money. And my husband will be doing a bachelor party, I'll be helping with the shower. I'm doing their engagement photos and wedding album for free as a gift.

Yes in the end it is their preference and I will leave it up to them. Just covering my basis with you all here.
post #7 of 13

Sure, barring complications from the C-section, I'd totally do it, especially since you're describing a venue with lots of quiet places where you can go sit down and have some quiet time. Most weddings I go to nowadays, the ceremony isn't much longer than 20 minutes. As long as you can be on your feet for 20 minutes, a friend can watch the baby for that long. You can totally nurse in a spagetti strap dress--you could even find a pretty shawl or something to drape if you wanted to.

I got married last month, and one of our very close friends brought their newborn -- I think he was four weeks old at that point. He slept in the sling most of the time, and his parents had a great time. I'm an extrovert, and that confinement postpartum is actually kind of difficult for me. DS and I were back out in the world pretty fast--that's what slings are made for. I found the newborn period fairly easy for being out and about--babies are so portable and immobile at that point. Now 14 months, that's a different story!

post #8 of 13

 I coordinated a wedding last year where the Matron of Honor was in your position. We had agreement from the bride and groom that having her in the wedding was a priority and therefore we made it work.


Hair and makeup were done in a private home with the professionals coming to the wedding party and not the other way around. The new mom came late (after nursing) and was only there for the length of time she needed to be 'done up'. Basically, she went last. Her husband, baby, and a sitter (in this case, the maternal grandmother) met us at the venue. Baby was with the women as they put on their dresses and had a toast (nursed before mom got into her gown). During the ceremony, baby was with grandmother in a parlor adjacent to the bridesmaid dressing room- near the ceremony, but out of earshot in case of crying. The grandmother also had my (wedding coordinator's) number so that she could text in an emergency and I could get mom as soon as possible (on her way back down the aisle if need be). If there is no coordinator, any trustworthy guest who is willing to sit in the back and signal you to go straight to baby after the ceremony if necessary will be fine. We did pictures right after the ceremony, then mom went to nurse again while other bridesmaids went to cocktail hour with the rest of the guests and the bride and groom went to have some peaceful together time.


Once baby was fed and mom was back in her dress, the wedding party met up and went in to the reception for dinner. Grandmother got fed in the parlor, baby napped. After dinner, dad went and got baby and brought him to the reception for a few minutes. I danced with him! The family left reasonably early- in time to get baby home for the next feeding.


It can absolutely be done without putting a strain on your day or causing interruption in the couple's day. It just has to be agreed upon and scheduled accordingly ahead of time.


Congratulations on your little one!


post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

M.Q. that is pretty much EXACTLY how I envsion it, more or less.  I've been behind the scenes of enough weddings in my time as a photographer that I'm not really intimidated. I know how these things work. I'm pretty familar with the venue.  They have a bridal suit, a lounge, and a complete lower level that we should have access too.  It's my 4th baby so there is a comfort level for me there too.  I generally know what to expect of myself.  I just need to make my sister-in-law comfortable.  She's not a high stress kind of person, and I'm not the maide of honor.  So I DO think it'll be fine.  


I just keep thinking that if I'm NOT in the wedding party I won't have an excuse to bring a helper and it'll be EVEN MORE to juggle as I'll be flying totally solo.  I may choose a second dress to wear later on in the day after basically all wedding duties are completed.  Probably black just so it all goes.  


I guess I'm going to talk to her on Thursday about it!


I think the only thing REALLY stressing me about it having the dress fitted despite my ever changing body! And with my luck she'll choose something form fitting instead of flowing that I'll loath wearing at 3 1/2 weeks! LOL!   ugh!  At least it'll be black.  My belly SHOULD generally blend in in the photos if I'm angled right. 

post #10 of 13

As a photographer, you might know all of this already, but here's a little bit of advice from someone who gets their picture taken for a living. Things I've learned from fellow screen Actors who have had babies:



1) Remember that your boobs will be epic, and likely overshadow any residual belly.

2) don't be afraid of big hair, a tall up-do, and/or statement jewelry to bring the eye upward and make you look taller.

3) dare to wear super high heels- even if they're just for the ceremony and photos. The added height balances any girth AND the heels force you to stand up straighter

4) spanx are your friend. And don't skimp on any other brand just this once (even the Assets brand by the same maker). You can layer with a belly bandit if necessary also, but you want SPANX.

post #11 of 13

you want to go, might as well go in style!  Find a nice matching baby carrier of sorts (moby wrap in black? could be chic), and have fun.

post #12 of 13

I second the Spanx!  I just attended my dad's wedding at 3 months post partum, and even with support garments on, I still felt like my body was falling out all over the place!


Lots of really great thoughts from everyone.  


Could you also pump just enough to bring one bottle with you?  that way, your support person at least has a little backup if you are tied up doing something....

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 

I do appreciate everyone's suggestions!  I'm going to be thinking seriously of all of them.


I broke the news to my family, including the bride and groom to be yesterday.  My soon to be sister-in-law was WONDERFUL!  She went on about how exciting it was.  She said I could do whatever I needed and even if at the last minute I for some reason decided I just can't... that's fine too.  She congratulated me and generally made me just cry!  LOL!  

:D  Very blessed!

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