I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. It looked beautiful in the box, neatly laid out, it was everything my twenty-two year old self had dreamed of. It was strapless, with some beading, white. The first time I put it on, it made me feel like a princess, I felt amazing in it. My mother, who had poo-poohed all the other dresses said I looked radiant.

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. I tried it on for the first time in nearly ten years. A lot has happened in those years: two children, three moves, losses, gains. Even though it had been sitting in a box for nearly ten years, the beading was coming loose. The polyester was scratchy, the tulle was rumpled. The dress no longer made me feel like a princess, it felt awkward and cheap.

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. I had initially thought about donating it to a charity that turned wedding dresses into angel gowns, beautiful custom made gown for final photos and for burial services, for infants that did not survive. The polyester against my skin turned me off, I wouldn’t want to wrap a baby in it.

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. I was going to put it into a plastic bag and donate it to charity, but that felt wrong. I’m still going to donate it to charity, there’s a local second hand shop that supports a hospice, it will go there, but not crammed into a plastic bag. I’ve carefully placed it back in the protective storage box instead, it looked like a corpse being neatly laid out in a coffin.

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. It once brought me great joy, but I’ve moved on from being twenty-two, wrapped up in the mythical idea of a perfect wedding. Other things bring me great joy now, and far more often. I’d rather have a bouquet of dandelions from my children decorating the dining room table, and have the dress move, in the hopes that it brings great joy to someone else.

I took my wedding dress out of the protective storage box today. I have mixed feelings about this. Would it have been better to leave it there and let it go?

Advertisements