When you are plodding along and checking off the items on your Wedding To-Do List, one of the first things that a bride does is finalize THE dress.
And I did that.
Back in mid-December, I took a few of my girlies over to Pebbles Bridal. I let them pick all kinds of gowns for me, just to be silly. Then I stuck to looking over more casual dresses in the bridesmaid section. I'm getting married on a beach lawn, so I didn't want a prom-bomb or anything over embellished. Several dresses were workable, then I tried on this construction cone orange dress, which aside from the color, looked like it met all of the requirements. I declared us DONE! Checked the item off of my to-do list and moved on to the next line item.
Note, I am a very decisive person and I love a well-made and executed To-Do list.
My dress came in last week. I was so excited to go pick it up. I went Saturday afternoon, with my bridal lingerie in tow, so I could try on the entire ensemble. The sales woman gave me a dressing room and my gown. Everything fit ok, but I still felt it was a bit tight in the hips. I walked out of the dressing room to look in the mirror.....at the same time a girl had brought a 12-person entourage to the same mirror to watch her be fit in a gown. So as soon as I walked out, a dozen heads swiveled around and I heard several "Oooohs" and "Aaaahhhhs." I was a bit overwhelmed at the hub-bub, smiled and then returned to my dressing room to disrobe.
I left with my dress, still unsure what it looked like, but I definitely opted to buy some Spanx to help with that tight-in-the-hips feel.
Almost 37 years old and I bought my first pair of Spanx. They are like a boa constrictor and a pair of panty hose mated and had an ugly step-child.
Once the Spanx arrived, I locked myself in the back of the house and once again assembled everything. I went over to the mirror and tried to like it. I amped myself up to like it. But it just wasn't there. When I first tried it on in the eclectic, distracting orange, it was great! It was fun! I even said, "But who would want this in orange?!" However, it was exactly that trait that made the dress work. In white, it was limp, cheap looking and there was no bright color to distract from the fact that the darts weren't in the right place for someone my height. The whole reason it felt tight through the hips was the misplacement of the darts. I would spend my wedding and reception trying to tug it in place all day.
I felt uncomfortable, under dressed.....and just not bride-like and beautiful.
That moment of honesty hit me like a brick. I. Hate. My. Dress.
Then the brick melted into and ice cold wash of anxiety as I accepted that I am getting married in 18 days...and I don't have THE dress. I have A dress. But not THE dress.
I put everything back on the hanger and in their proper bags. My sweats went back on and I walked out into the living room. I picked up the computer and started looking at every wedding dress I could find online.
Jesse looked at me and asked what I was doing. I waved him off and said that I was just doing "something" and he didn't need to concern himself. After my "something" took up over an hour of my undivided attention, Jesse started to question me again. He knew something was quite off.
I looked up at him and meekly stated, "I hate my dress."
His face just fell. The same brick hit him. He was immediately empathetic and wanted me to talk about it and not "shut him out."
My response was that I wasn't shutting him out, I was just not going to talk about it or I would go absolutely bezerk and possibly start crying. In lieu of such activity, I decided to start searching online to see if there was anything I could rush order overnight. I prefer to find solutions over having a hysterical moment.
After I confessed the horrible truth to him, I was able to Facebook one girlfriend, who works in fashion and went to the fitting with me. She didn't write back, but called me immediately. Her first words, "Are you o-k?"
I assured her that I was not in full blown panic, but I don't love my dress. She offered to come over to look at it, to see if it was just me being silly, whatever. I responded that I knew this wasn't the one. I didn't feel special. I didn't feel beautiful. I didn't feel it was right for my day. I also let her know I was rush ordering items to my office and if that didn't work out, I might need her to ride sidekick for a whole bride-zilla dress shopping extravaganza.
I felt good about being honest. I felt good about not trying to make the dress work. I did not feel good about having nothing to wear to my wedding.
I found two dresses and paid rush delivery. They came in today. I went to a loft we own upstairs with two of my coworkers who could help me pull them on. We have a space, which has big mirrors and great natural lighting.
Both dresses looked better that the one I have deemed "unworkable." And one looks perfectly heavenly. The color works with my skin tone. It's elegant, understated, simple, and it's THE dress.
Crisis averted. I don't have to get married in my skivvies or a burlap sack.