by Bride X
Some say, “You’re not marrying his family you’re marrying him!” And others say “Remember, it’s not just him you’re marrying, it’s his family too.” That pretty much sums up the 3 months and 13 days that I've been engaged. Slowly but surely I am getting this totally foreign state of being down. But just in case anyone else finds herself in the neon “YOU’RE A BRIDE!” light before she knows if she’s ready for it, let me share some thoughts on what to do when.
If your husband-to-be proposes in the morning, while you’re half-asleep, remember to say “yes” before you start crying. Otherwise, the Proposal Story, will have to forever include him chiming in to say, “And she didn’t even say ‘yes!’”
Later, after you’ve had three bottles of champagne, go spend $50 on all the bridal magazines you can find. Laugh about the recycled articles, how cheesy the dresses are, and how you will never need one of those stupid countdown checklists.
You may be lying in bed that night and feel an intense burning feeling where your new ring is branding your flesh. It helps to hold your hand up in the moonlight and see that it is good and pure. It also helps to start twitching, throw up the three bottles of champagne, cry and let your new life mate hold you and tell you how great everything will be.
When Looking for a Dress
Do not enter a bridal shop without the following: a girlfriend you’ve seen stuffed into a bustier; a pad of paper for notes and sketches; a disposable camera; unstained, matching lingerie; a tan; water and a loaf of bread; a good pen; Bounce to rub on your hair to prevent static. Under no circumstances should you take: any preconceived ideas about what looks good on you and what doesn’t, a watch, your dog.
The First Month
It is best not to talk at all for the first month. It saves you the hassle of backtracking with people you unintentionally deceived by saying things like, “This is not going to be the focus of my life for the next 10 months.” If you must speak, keep it simple with things like, “I don’t know.” Or try “Fuck, I don’t know” if you want sympathy along with whatever bit of advise you’re about to get.
When You’re Drunk
It is important to tell your fiance how much you love him when you are drunk. Even better, if you go out with just the girls, wake him up to tell him when you get home. Alcohol is a very powerful emotion if used correctly.
The Moments You are Sad
This one comes in many forms. If it’s thinking about all you could lose through marriage - spontaneous plans with friends, cottage cheese for dinner, getting high alone - remember that more and more jobs require some amount of travel. You will still get your time - the tricky part is appreciating it.
If, instead, your sadness is caused by the distance flashes you feel around your unmarried friends, take heart. It’s only because you’ve been mentally sorting through them like so much cattle to determine your bridal party. After the wedding you’ll have time to make new friends.
When You Feel Totally Self -Absorbed
It’s okay, really, as long as you recognize that it can last only until you return from your honeymoon. No one wants to be the first ugly bride in history. It is not for naught that the diet begins, the arm weights come out of the trunk for nightly use, your hairdresser moves up the list of important people in your life, you start questioning eyebrow shape and mole removal. I recommend spreading these details out among friends rather than subjecting just one to the torture of your life change .
The Moments You are Happy Every once in a while it will hit you that you are actually getting married. Forever. It is a most powerful and endorphin-releasing feeling to think love can be so complete and completing. Don’t shut yourself up. Embrace that ecstasy and know yourself as romantic, smart, lucky, and hopeful.
To come next month…
The First Time Someone says “In Laws”
When You Ponder Religion
The Day You Make a Decision
When Someone Says, “I’ll Be There No Matter What!”
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