She would swoon over the wedding dresses in the window, coffee cup in hand, as she walked down the small street in her lunch break. A daily ritual. To escape work, to breath in some fresh air. Designers dresses lined up in a row, fairy tales on display. Each one a promise that happily ever after did indeed exist. She would catch herself on some days and wonder ‘Would I plan the same wedding if I was doing it all again today?’
The first time was a fairy tale. A wish come true. It was hardly a leap of faith, but a meticulously planned, calculated, Instagram-worthy event she defined herself by. Or at least she did then. When it was all happening. Now it was a little different. How could it not be, she was a little different. The fairy tale had reached its happily ever after and real life had taken its place.
Part of her feels like if she were to plan her wedding today she would not do a single thing the same. Cut the guest list in half, less even. A small restaurant, not a big fancy reception. Less details, more flowers, no garter. And maybe even a different dress.
She paused at one of the windows looking in, the cold Melbourne winter air caught the back of her neck, she drew her coat in closer, tighter. The dress in the window was a perfect harmony of lace and silk, clad tight over the mannequin. The soft, delicate veil fell behind the display, cascading onto a table of fresh flowers. ‘More lace,’ she thought to herself. ‘If I was to buy my wedding dress again I would have more lace, a longer, fuller veil, maybe even two dresses – one for the ceremony and one for the small celebration afterwards.’
That is when she stopped. She remembered that girl. The girl she was back then. Full of hope, dreams and light. The girl who hand-in-hand with her mother went into every single one of the shops she peered into from the outside on her lunch break. The girl who tried on every single one of the dresses till she found the perfect one. That girl deserved her wedding day. In all of its meticulously planned, calculated, Instagram-worthy details.
The two of them were never meant to be the same. That girl and her. They were always meant to grow apart, move on, write a different story. But somewhere, long past time, long past moments, there will always be something that connects them. Maybe there will always be many things that connect them. The dress always will.
In her wardrobe now full of dresses she has worn only once, dresses for other people’s weddings, special occasions and moments that define her life, her wedding dress was the most solemn. The raw silk, hand stitching, Swarovski crystals, pearls and soft, delicate cascading veil are like the thousand pages of a dictionary. Words that all define her.
The dress was a promise. A promise she made to herself. To always believe, to have faith, to trust in love when all else fails. The sun broke through the clouds, the wind eased enough for her to loosen her grip on the coat she was wrapped in tight. She smiled, catching her reflection in the window. She would do every single thing the same. The dress, the reception, the flowers, the guest list. For every story has a beginning. A beginning we must look back on with respect and grace. Especially when all the other things change.
What conversation would you have with your wedding dress?
Conversations over Coffee returns Tuesday October 25, 2016 (yes we skip next month!)
Conversations with Belief ~ everyone is welcome xx
Thank you to the beautiful brides, Lisa, Rachelle and Josette,
who shared these stunning images of such a special day in each of their lives.
In every image a dream comes true xx
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Catch up on my last blog post Mirror, mirror