Awkward is not being obsessed over our wedding but being expected to be by society and even by people who have known me my whole life. People who knew I was firmly in the "I doubt I'll ever get married" club for a very long time and still being asked by them "what are your colors?"
It is drilled into girls so young to be consumed by weddings and colors and the perfect dress and the perfect day and its YOUR DAY (not "their day" because the plural actually includes the love of your life and its not even really about him.....besides that YOU ARE MARRYING HIM) and you're a princess and you're expected to be a complete bitch and make your bridesmaids wear the same dress and shoes and jewelry and hair and to be suddenly concerned with flowers and favors and colors and types of ribbon. So when I ventured out into the wide world of wedding planning, I've been met with a lot of strange looks and behaviors for not being so typical.
All I have wanted since we got engaged was to NOT be stressed in the planning process and to create a day that reflects us as a couple and that celebrates love. There have been a few small incidents, but nothing compares to my dress shopping experiences.
The first shop I went to was on a Monday evening. My sister was with me and we were not even approached by an employee until my we had pulled a bunch of dresses Then we were sort of yelled at for, because they usually only pull 5 at most at a time. Then we took pictures of me the first dress I put on and were told we weren't allowed to do that either. Great start. I had one I really liked, but I wanted to try more.
I should have done my research, and not gone to the SeventhCircleofHell for dress shopping round two, but I was on a budget, so it was off to D's Bridal for me. There I was tortured by being assigned an associate who was easily 75 years old and had a way less than pleasant disposition. When I arrived for my scheduled appointment, the receptionist at the store told me my associate would be with me soon. I asked if I should start pulling dresses, and was told oh no, they would do it for me. Cool I thought. Well, not really. She made me do that while she went to get me a slip and a bra, and then put my girls to work pulling stuff, which was fine, but then she complained if they brought dresses that were a size too small or a size too big for me to try. She didn't even ask me if I wanted one of them to help me in and out of things, she just did it, and stabbed me with her long red finger nails as she put me in and out of about 15 dresses. She had the worst people skills I had ever experienced. I am a pretty easy person to talk to, but she made me so uncomfortable. It was awful.
I later decided to purchase the favorite dress from the initial store. The day I was measured was another one laden with awkwardness. I was treated like I was an inconvenience and was rushed through the process. I'd never had measurements of any kind taken so I didn't know what to expect and the girl measuring me was a total bitch. When I asked what "private designer" meant (I was told my dress was made by one of the shops private designers) because I had some ethical concerns, the owner matter-of-factly told me, "honey they are all made in sweatshops, so unless you have a dress custom made that's where its coming from, but I've been to them, and they are that bad" and it wasn't so much what she said but how she said it. Then I was scooted out the door as fast as they could take my full payment in cash.
I felt like because I did not purchase an extravagant, princess ball gown I was treated like crap. On a later visit when I mentioned how I was looking for 3 different dresses with brown lace accents the girl helping me that day looked at me like I had lobsters crawling out of my nose.
My original dress....isn't she lovely?
Now, recent events discussed in Adventures in Wedding Planning have forced me to purchase other dress since my original one has gone MIA.
Dress number two...pretty but not perfect.
Lesson Learned: To avoid awkward moments and lots of frustration by not buying into the Wedding Industrial Complex in American Society, Elope and have an informal BBQ reception unless you can afford a full service wedding planner....or if you do buy into the WIC, more power to you...it's just not me.