Same questions, new answers.
Real Bride #2: Robyn Paloian
Photographer: Erin Johnson
Where did you get married and when?
We got married in Minneapolis, MN on August 7, 2010. The ceremony was at Temple Israel and the reception at the Metropolitan
What was the best moment of the day?
For me, the best moment of the day was the “reveal,” when Neil and I saw each other for the first time. Near the front entrance of the synagogue, I descended the steps behind him. I tapped him on the shoulder, and we just stared at each other and hugged (but not kissed – didn’t want to ruin my makeup before pictures!). At that moment I remember feeling what this whole big production was about: our love for and commitment to each other.
What was the most memorable moment of the day (different than the best- maybe something funny, someone fainting, bad toast, etc)?
The most memorable moment of the day for me was being introduced as husband and wife and having our first dance. We had arrived privately to the reception and were whisked away from the rest of the guests during cocktail hour. We had hors d’oeuvres and champagne alone while taking in the beautiful decor in the main ballroom. We watched from above as our guests trickled in for dinner after cocktails in the separate bar area. Our amazing band got the party fired up and we watched the scene unfold from the balcony. After a few peppy numbers, the band announced Neil and Robyn Paloian, dancing together for the first time as husband and wife. We made our grand entrance and danced to a song that so simply captured our feelings: “you and me together, we can do anything…” our friends and family clapped and cheered from the edge of the dance floor, and Neil nailed the routine I had made him practice incessantly. It was an unforgettable feeling, and the best segue into a fabulous party.
If you could do it over again, what would you do differently (if anything)?
If I could do it over again, I would have made sure to get more sleep the night before!
What was the most stressful part of the planning?
The most stressful part of planning – for me, nothing. I lived out of town at the time of planning, and I was so fortunate to have parents that were willing to do so much, and fantastic wedding planners who could execute my vision.
What were you thinking while you were walking down the aisle?
While I was walking down the aisle, I felt so much love of family and friends in the room, and I remember thinking that Neil and I were truly blessed.
Did you do anything special to get in tip top shape?
Since our engagement a year before the wedding, I purposely avoided diets and crazy exercise regimes. Women might hate me for saying this, but I actually lost weight just listening to my body and enjoying the happiness of living with my fiancé. We drank beer and ate carbs, but we cooked with a lot of natural, healthy products. It also helps that I’m a vegetarian. I’d exercise to feel good instead of calculating how much dessert a run would buy me.
What is your advice for choosing bridesmaids?
When I chose bridesmaids, I wanted to prioritize family. I don’t have any siblings, so I had my two first cousins and my future sister-in-law. I also had my two best friends from college. I didn’t want a huge wedding party, so those 5 fun, sweet girls were the perfect support to surround myself with on the big day.
What was your first dance song?
“You and Me” by Dave Matthews Band
What shoes did you wear and were they comfortable?
I wore Tahari nude patent and matte leather peep-toe pumps. They were comfortable for the first 5 hours…but nobody talks about how much you’re on your feet on your wedding day! We were dressed since about 2pm that day. Luckily the ibuprofen, champagne and sheer joy helped me forget about my feet
Were you able to enjoy the reception or did you feel that you needed to “work the room?”
At my wedding reception I did feel some obligation to “work the room,” but it did not impact my enjoyment at all. The guests were my family and friends who came out to support and celebrate with me! I made sure to say hi to everyone, but I danced, ate and drank when I wanted, and I think it balanced perfectly.
What is your best “day of wedding” advice?
I am happy to share the best day-of wedding advice that I received: from the ceremony and going forward, stick with your husband. Not only do you want to share the whole experience with him, but when you look back on the day you’ll want to have the same memories. Well-meaning photographers, planners, and out-of-town guests may be obstacles that can come between you and your man, and it’s easy to lose each other in a sea of people who all want your attention. So we made a pact to hold onto each other the whole night, and if we got separated we’d quickly find our ways back. It felt very romantic.
Did your relationship feel different after the wedding?
Our relationship didn’t feel different the next day, week, and probably month. But as I got used to saying “my husband…,” and as we experienced more real life situations as a married couple, it really sank in. Our relationship continues to feel different as we grow together. And a newly engaged or newly married couple might not believe it’s possible, but I love my husband more every day. And I make sure to tell him.