We made it! This past Sunday, the Engaged Girl tied the knot with the Tall One, and they became the Married Ones. I’m still in a bit of a daze—the five and one half months leading up to the Big Event just about did me in. Honestly, I’m just tired and a little emotionally drained. Overall, there were few hitches and everyone said it was a lovely wedding and reception. As soon as the photographers finish editing the photos, I’ll share some here.
Probably the biggest hiccup happened the Wednesday before the ceremony. The Tall One went to pick up his suit from DXL in Webster, Texas only to learn the pants were nine inches too short. We still haven’t figured out why someone would order pants that short for a man who stands 6′ 5″ in his socks. They promised to have the problem corrected by Friday. When he went back to pick them up Friday evening, they were still 3 1/2 inches too short.
I thought I was going to have a coronary when I learned they offered to sew some extra fabric around the bottom to make them longer. Um…I don’t think so.
Eventually they discovered his pants had been sent to Seguin, Texas, about three hours from us. They said the store opened at 10:00 am on Saturday and closed at noon, but the manager would be willing to wait until 1:00 pm if we wanted to drive to Seguin to pick them up. Can you believe that???
Fortunately, the Tall One had invested in a beautiful Ralph Lauren suit back in April, but he had not yet had the pants hemmed. OM (Jami’s “Other Mom”) is a brilliant seamstress, so she was able to hem the pants for him the night before the wedding on Sunday.
It’s a shame DXL isn’t a little more cognizant of the power of a happy customer. If they’d come through for us, we would have been happy to recommend them to everyone we know. They did not come through for us, and thus far I’ve posted three one star reviews (Google, Yelp, and YP) along with a photo documenting the kind of service they provide. We are still waiting for them to offer some sort of compensation for our inconvenience. But we’re not holding our breath.
Amazingly, we are in pretty good shape with wedding preparations. The venue has been secured, along with an all-inclusive caterer (he does linens, china, food, cakes, table decor, and wedding party flowers! Yay!), the photographer, videographer, DJ, and makeup/hair stylists.
Invitations were mailed and reply cards are coming back. The bridal shower is mid-August, and for the most part we are all calm, cool, and relatively collected. In a midnight online shopping adventure, I actually found my dress — ordered from Dillards.com. I was so worried about finding a dress I’d like. This was the only one I tried on, and I love it! Yay!
I need to find some flats so I can have it hemmed. I’m not wearing heels. The skirt is long and no one would see them anyway. Ha!
After seeing so many posts online regarding the “Day Without a Woman” protest, I honestly thought the world had gone stark raving bonkers. Seriously, who would have thought we’d see women walking around a few weeks ago in pornographic craft projects gone bad in protest?
Then my daughter, Jami, posted a link to this article on her FB page, and I was encouraged and reassured that there are still intelligent, responsible women walking this planet.
The article and the numerous responses of levelheaded women it documents give me great comfort in knowing there ARE strong women out there who don’t whine and complain about perceived injustices. They know they are strong and capable of taking charge of their own destinies, choosing their own paths. It makes me incredibly proud to know that my daughter recognizes what a truly strong woman does and is making her own path in this world without expecting accommodations, but by doing the work needed to achieve her dreams.
To continue the protests, this came out: Some Women Are Striking From Smiling Today. Apparently, smiling is a form of “emotional labor” — and women are tired of being forced to appear pleasant and/or happy. According to the article, “emotional labor” is a term that was coined in 1983 (a year after I graduated from high school) and it refers to putting others first in order to keep things going smoothly and make others happy. Supposedly, women walking down the street are being commanded by passersby to smile, and cautioned that an unfulfilled request can escalate into something undesirable. I’m trying to remember the last time I was out walking about that someone demanded that I smile. Oh, that’s right! NEVER.
Here’s a question for you, whomever you may be, whatever you may be (male or female): Why are these people so determined to be miserable? Whatever happened to taking one’s circumstances and making the best of them? There’s a good chance that, in the process, those circumstances will improve thanks to the effort. I’ve found that when I think of others in a kindly and caring manner, it is often returned to me. Treat my husband like crap? Refuse to think about his needs? I’m pretty certain I’ll reap the harvest of what I’ve sown. But care about him, do what I can to make his day a better day? I find he returns the love.
We just celebrated our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, and my husband surprised me with a wedding vow renewal at the beach in Surfside, Texas. He spent a year planning an event that was perfectly us. He had the beach as his background (as a Galveston BOI, it’s his favorite place) and with our sisters’ help, he made sure I had the “pretties” I enjoy so much. Our road to that day (and to the future ahead) has not always been smooth. There have been times that we both thought “what the hell have we done?” Thankfully, we’ve never thought it at the same time, and we’re both too stubborn to quit on each other. So here we are. And here is the blog post he wrote that proves to me success is to be found in focusing on and loving others, not whining and complaining about how life isn’t fair. He said,
When I look at Laura, this is what I see. After 25 years, I do not see a beautiful, young, sexy thing. I see a part of me that has consistently withstood the trials of life and yet remained true and has stayed the course. To me, that is more beautiful and sexy than anything else in this world, and the stories we can tell!
I cannot think of any more beautiful words than those. Of course, a third wave feminist will take umbrage at the phrase “a part of me” — the outcry will be “I am my OWN person, not a part of any man” — and for those who can’t see the forest for the trees, I feel sorry for you. You get so caught up in the minutia that you can’t see this is a man who will give his life for me, who loves me as much or more than himself — who remembers every thing he’s ever heard me express an interest in and does what he can to make sure I have the enjoyment of that thing, the fulfillment of my goals and dreams. On the flip side of that, he is a part of me — I am committed to him with equal fervor.
If I’d only focused on the negatives, and refused to see the positives, odds are great we wouldn’t have lasted and I would have missed out on a ceremony that truly means more to me than the one we experienced in 1992. The first wedding was nice, there’s no doubt. It was in a church, I had the beautiful dress, we were surrounded by friends and family, and there was a big cake and punch. But the truth? Our renewal says this:
I kept my promise, and I choose to keep it again.
So on the days that aren’t perfect, the days I roll my eyes and think, “What have I gotten myself into?” — I choose to remember he may be thinking the same thing. And then I remind myself of the good times and the promise of more. I choose joy, no matter the circumstances. Choosing misery and complaint only produces more of the same, and is rooted in selfishness. My prayer for all these confused women is that they try joy for a change. Focus on others and see if things turn around. You might be surprised.
Lagnaippe: 1. Chiefly Southern Louisiana and Southeast Texas. A small gift with purchase to a customer, by way of compliment or for good measure; bonus. 2. a gratuity or tip. 3. an unexpected or indirect benefit.