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Real bride diary: the finish line is in sight!

Real bride diary: the finish line is in sight!

Written by Harriet Lee

Paralympic swimming champion Harriet Lee is getting married - and sharing her journey down the aisle exclusively with us


After a major swimming meet, we reflect on our performance and look at what we can change for next year or through the next cycle. It’s time to be gracious, to thank those that have supported you throughout and to start making plans. For my final blog post for WEDDING, I’d like to try something new, and start looking back before the big event.

As the big day draws nearer I've been reflecting on my relationship and how me and Mr P have got to where we are. There has been a lot of upheaval in our eight years, alongside major changes and personal disappointments. Yet, without the changes, I doubt we would have got to this point… Two weeks before our wedding!

Soon after Mr P and I got together, I offered him a way-out. My illness had taken over my life and I felt it was unfair to burden someone else with it as well. You may have guessed, but he didn't take it! Whilst my disability and health issues have allowed me to compete at Paralympic Games, they've also ensured I have a vast array of knowledge of the A&E departments around the UK, including Newcastle, Manchester, Sheffield, Swansea, London, Cambridge and so many more that we often joked about setting up a hospital review website. I couldn’t thank Mr P enough for holding my hand throughout, keeping me sane and ensuring I was mentally tough enough to walk out of hospital, and get back to working towards my dreams.

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I won't give a speech on our wedding day and I'm sure Mr P will say this in his, but a big thank you to our parents for their support over the last 18 months. I’m so happy to be bringing these two fantastic families together and I know we all look forward to a bright future.

Another thank you goes to the best men, who managed to get Mr P back to Cambridge after his stag do with all his hair and eyebrows intact, as well as no extra tattoos! It was a sight I had been dreading for weeks, so I think that’s a job well done...

As for the wedding - with two weeks to go, I still have two bridesmaids potentially without dresses, with one currently on her honeymoon driving across Route 66! She won’t try her gown on until the day before, so fingers crossed.

The credit cards have taken a battering this last week as we start fulfilling our final payments, with a bank account that has not been touched bar payments in until now. Whilst it’s nice to know that the bank will freeze your card if it thinks it’s involved in fraud, it would be nicer to be told first, instead of finding out after embarrassing phone calls from providers saying the money hasn't moved!

A final thanks goes to you guys for reading my blogs. I'm so happy you could join me on our personal journey and I hope I have been able to give you some fresh ideas as well as show you the lighter side of wedding planning. Yes, it can be stressful, but just make sure you enjoy it. Best of luck with your plans, your big day and the years of happiness after.

Follow Harriet on Twitter and Instagram. 

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