around the block

I’ve been dancing around posting on this topic for a long time. However, it’s been nagging at me, and I feel like to stay true to how this blog was born and the path I promised it would take . . . this topic deserves visiting. I imagine I’ll archive and start a new blog in the coming months, and this blog just wouldn’t be complete without the closure and sharing of my feelings on this . . . the topic of being a second time bride. I never had much of an issue saying I was divorced when it initially happened. Meeting so many other 20-something divorcees early on in the process was incredibly helpful. They shared their stories and allowed me the forum to share mine. And the parallels my story had to so many others was comforting. Talking about it was necessary in my healing process. It allowed me the time and space to just be. To not rush into anything again too quickly, to get to know myself, to allow the lessons from that awful chapter in my life to truly absorb.

However, over the years, that need to talk about it completely quelled. Now, it’s on the opposite end of the spectrum . . . I find it incredibly hard to talk about it. Most people who have met me in the past year or two don’t even know I am divorced. It’s not a detail I feel is relevant to any part of my life now. Of course it’s part of my history and I certainly wouldn’t be who I was today without experiencing it, but it’s part of my private history, locked away in the archives. It was a done deal and I haven’t had to deal with any feelings from that chapter in my life for quite some time.

But, now that I’m embarking on the marriage train again, a whole new set of bittersweet feelings have emerged and I’ve had to face that awful D word once again.

It’s been an interesting journey to accept to a lot of the traditional aspects we’re choosing for our wedding and reception. Mainly because I never saw myself having a wedding, I always swore I’d elope. Of course, yes, that was before I had met The One and taken any of his opinions or wants into consideration. (Read, I said *I’d* elope, but not *we*). And I love He Who Shall Not Be Named and we share the same traditional values about marriage and family. So, how can we not start our life together with a more traditional event?

Yet, reconciling that fact with my feelings of being a tacky, second-time bride was incredibly difficult. For years I’ve prescribed to the old-school perception that divorcees can’t have weddings. They can’t wear a white wedding dress and they most certainly can’t invite people to attend a ceremony.

None of it made sense to me and as excited as I was to dive into wedding planning, a little part of me continued to nag, telling me I didn’t deserve any of this.

After hearing from me for the 100th time that I felt like a fraud and we can’t do this and I refuse to do that . . . He Who Shall Not Be Named finally looked at me, in the most loving way of course, and kindly told me it was time to get over myself. That enough was enough because no one cares I was married before – I was young and I screwed up. It’s as simple (though, at the time, as complicated) as that.

And he’s right.

And the more I read wedding blogs and learned about the history of weddings and how traditions started in the first place, I learned that, originally, brides never even wore white. It was simply a trend that started after someone in some royal family wore it in the 1800s and it stuck. So, why should the color of the dress I wear on my wedding even matter?

Between the validation I started getting from reading countless other second-time bride situations on wedding blogs and, of course, after that little nudge from my other half, I was able to shake my I’m-a-bride-imposter feelings off.

Instead, I’ve chosen to focus on the positive feelings all of this has brought to light . . . sure I’m legally doing this for the second time, but this time I’m doing it with the right person, in the right way . . . so it absolutely feels like the first time to me. It makes the previous chapter in my life feel worlds away, almost like it never happened, yet it will still never change the fact that the lessons from that period have absorbed into my core. However, it’s those lessons allow me to carry on in this next chapter in a healthy, happy way. They allow me to enter into this next era confidently, being older and wiser, and knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that I have a true gem of a partner. I know we are going to have a great life together. And I know I never want a day to go by where he doesn’t know how much he is loved.

So, at work the other day, when speaking to someone about my wedding details, I joked about the stress of planning a wedding and how I tried for a minute to convince He Who Shall Not Be Named to elope in Paris. That person joked back and said, “Well, you’ve done this before, so nothing new!”

When I was done turning red and picking my jaw up off the floor from that insensitive comment, I simply said, “No, I haven’t done this before.”

An that’s an honest statement.

Comments

  1. I know you and 2 of my other friend that got divorced at a young age. One of my other friends is engaged again, and the other one is in a very happy, stable relationship and I would expect her to be engaged again soon. I guess I never thought about divorced people not “deserving” to have another wedding. You might have been married before, but this is your beginning of your happily ever after, and that most definitely deserves a big celebration. =)

  2. You most definitely do DESERVE another wedding. This is an entirely different situation to a different person and you are at a different place in your life. You deserve a dream wedding! I can’t wait to be at this wedding! 🙂

  3. All that matters is where you are today. The love that you and He Who Shall Not Be Named have is every bit deserving of a day focused around the life you are creating together.

    I’m sorry you’re dealing with this and I hope that you get only loving and joyful remarks from now on. I’ve been through this, and you can always vent to me. One thing I learned is that I wish I would’ve spoke up more to friends and family who gave me the “second marriage” attitude or just general lack of excitement – I wish more of our loved ones would’ve made a bigger deal about our wedding/marriage. Jeremy deserved so much more… I did too.

    Love you, my sweet friend!

  4. Never listen to the naysayers because there will always be some! Focus on your love with He Who Shall Not Be Named and this exciting adventure that you and he are embarking on. This is a whole new chapter and definitely deserving of big bash! I am so excited to be in attendance!!! I am so happy for you and I don’t know anyone more deserving of happiness than you! I love you and let the count down to the White Wedding begin baby!!!

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