You can probably tell from previous blog posts that I’m not the best bride – I’ve whinged to my besties more than once that I’m a failure female. I hate the word “bride”, table cloths and napkins freak me out, place settings are stressful (am I using the right fork?) and…wedding dresses. Hoo boy.
Prior to being engaged, I’d gone wedding dress shopping with a few friends and it was great fun. I got to sit around and coo at the beautiful bride-to-be trying on dresses, play with tulle and organza, and I loved being there to offer my friends (hopefully!) helpful advice. I was no wedding-fantasiser as a little girl, but I definitely thought about my wedding dress, and before being engaged I loved hearing brides’ stories about how they found The One (Dress), how there was a Moment where the planets aligned and time stood still and the animals were silent and the Dress was perfect. Then it came to my turn.
My first time in a store to try on wedding dresses wasn’t even a bridal store. It was Lisa Ho. Yes, I know, she does bridal dresses, but I thought it would take the edge off by going into a store that wasn’t “bridal”. As soon as I moved beyond her ready-to-wear into the back corner where her wedding dresses are displayed, I became very stressed. I got short of breath, and my hands were sweaty and shaking. Browsing through the racks of lace and jersey, I kept shaking my head.
I decided to up the ante a bit – maybe it wasn’t right because the dresses weren’t right, so I took my mum on a girly shopping day to Sydney and visited some of Australia’s Holy Grail of bridal stores – Helen Rodrigues, Anna Dafonte and Vera Wang. Same thing happened – I think I frightened some of the sales assistants with my overactive sweat glands.
Long story short – wedding dress shopping wasn’t for me. I have to admit, I’m a little sad – I really love me some pretty dresses and am seriously into fashion, so I thought this might be the funnest (is that a word?) part of wedding planning. I was really looking forward to a “This Is It” Moment – I wanted chills, and tears, and popping of champagne. But I should’ve known – I wasn’t the little girl fantasising about my wedding, or big white dresses or Prince Charming.
I felt like I’d been tricked. I must have tried on 20-30 dresses, and I felt sparks, but no Moments, no violins, no operatic singing. Where were the tingles? You hear it on blogs all the time and when you gossip with your girlfriends about the bride that burst into tears upon finding the perfect dress, the loud-mouthed mother who went silent, the girlfriends chorusing together “You found the Dress!!”. Do we get conditioned into thinking that there is a “Moment”? Are we pressured into having that “Moment”?
So one dreary weekend, tucked into bed with my laptop in my lap browsing about ten different wedding blogs, feeling sorry for myself for being wedding-dress-less and Moment-less, thinking “Will I ever find my dress? Why haven’t I had the Moment? What’s wrong with me?” Then I stopped myself short – I have my man who loves me, and who I love wholeheartedly back. Who needs The One Dress when I already have my One? And that, my friends, was my Moment.