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NOVEMBER 30, 2009 8:49PM

Engaged, with children

Rate: 4 Flag

It's such an odd thing, being engaged and a mom at the same time. I'm almost 40 years old! And I've never been so hyper-aware of it until now.

Shopping for wedding rings, we were surrounded by all of these children who were also searching for engagement rings. What are these babies doing, tying themselves down before they've even figured out who they are? I'm not even sure all the potential grooms are shaving on a regular basis yet.

They were all very accommodating of us, though. Stepping out of our way, letting us get around them. I guess they were afraid we'd slip and break a hip. We probably reminded them of their parents. Hell, we could *be* some of their parents!

And then there's the whole wedding thing. It's so much more important to me to be married than to get married. But I still want our actual wedding day to be special.

I look at bridal gowns and I feel so silly. Apparently it's against some current bridal code to wear a dress with actual sleeves. Everything is strapless. And most require you to be strapped in with complicated ribbon corsets. With the additional beading and sparkles and ruffles and flounces, the models look more like frosted cupcakes than adult women making lifetime commitments.

But the alternatives are slim. There are, of course, the dresses they make for the "mature bride." All of which look like they came from Bea Arthur's closet. Yikes.

I've absolutely fallen in love with the dresses by this marvelous designer, Stephanie James. They are very retro 1950s style, sort of irreverent. Perfect combination. Dresses made for adults, not Disney Princesses. They also start in the 4-digits, completely out of my price range, but it's a start.

Though it's just so hard to imagine myself actually putting on a wedding dress again. And sometimes I wonder if it's even appropriate.

 I remember going to a wedding about 12 years ago, clients of my now ex-husband. The bride was in her late 50s, early 60s. A grandmother. She followed a gaggle of bridesmaids and flower girls, processing down the aisle in a full white wedding gown, complete with veil and long train. Chutzpah, to be sure. But truth be told, it was odd. A mature body in a dress designed for a young girl. A virginal veil shrouding her face as she was escorted on the arm of her grandson.

I know I'm not a Disney princess. But I don't want to be Miss Haversham, either.

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yeesh. please change vail to veil when you read this. I don't know how to edit my post after it's published.
Maybe you could rent a Stephanie James? Now I gotta go find some pictures --

to edit: go to the "More" button next to VIEW BLOG -- then click on "Manage your Posts" -- then click EDIT next to the post you want to edit. Be sure to click UPDATE before you get out of the post (after you make your corrections).
I say find any dress, in whatever style and color, that makes you feel celebratory and beautiful and unselfconscious. Oh, and you must be able to dance in it! Good luck, and congrats!
My wife had the same challenge--and ended up having a dress made for her. (She was beautiful, btw.)