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"Always, always, always a bridesmaid."

Something interesting happened at work today.  One of my superiors told me, “Once a bridesmaid, always a bridesmaid.”  Well.  Trust me.  I have something to say about that.  And because I can’t say it to him (he’s my superior, after all), I’m going to tell all of you. I don’t believe that at all.  I have been a bridesmaid five times, and have another wedding coming up next spring.  And I have no fear that I’m never going to get married, and this expression needs to die.

There are several reasons I believe this, but I think this is the most important:

YOUR LIFE IS NOT A KATHERINE HEIGL MOVIE.27 dresses

Okay, now that I have that out of my system, here is the rest of what I’m going to say:

First, I went to a small, private, Christian college.  So, in the scheme of things, there is a higher chance that people who go to schools like that are going to get married right out of college than if they went to a bigger, public institution.  Why is that?  Well, I obviously haven’t done any scientific research or anything, but I have a theory.

I think the biggest factor is the “Christian” part.  Now, I am a Christian, too, so I’m not bashing anyone here.  But small colleges like that have a higher population of people who are saving themselves for marriage, I would think.  Why?  Three reasons come to mind.  1)  They can surround themselves with people who have similar interests and beliefs, 2) they are close to the religious aspect that is obviously a big part of their life, and 3) small, private colleges give you a more one-on-one kind of education, with smaller class sizes and more opportunities for undergraduate research.  So, if you’re looking for a place where you can get a great education and still be around people like you, those small schools are the place to be.

I only chose a small school for the third reason, personally.  They gave me a big scholarship, and I wanted the challenge and the close-knit atmosphere.  The religious aspect was on the back burner for me.  It was a time in my life where I wasn’t sure what I wanted and what I believed.  I have since figured it out (at least to the best of my abilities), but that wasn’t what I was looking for in a higher education setting.

Regardless of why I chose my small alma mater, I loved it there.  And in loving it there, I met a lot of people who fit into the first two categories that I mentioned.  Because I didn’t share their mindset, I wasn’t super close to any of them.  But I knew who they were.  And everyone I can think of that fits into that is now already married, and many of them have children now, too.

Okay, so, what does this have to do with me, since I wasn’t friends with people who fit into those categories?  It was easier to be engaged in college at a place like that.  The summer after I graduated, I was in two weddings, both college friends.  The circumstances were different, but they still got married that summer right after I graduated.  It was a thing.  And I knew some people who actually got married while they were in college, which is nuts to me, but they made it work.

Since then, it’s been the usual stuff.  Half of the couple is older, or they’ve been together for eight years, or half of the couple is from a foreign country.  I know a lot of people.  And now that I’m 25, it’s probably going to be happening even more often.

So, second.  I love weddings.  Why would I not want to be a part of them?

When you think wedding, what comes to mind?  For a lot of people, I think it might mean party with free (or cheap) alcohol, but that’s not at all what I think of when I think of a wedding.  Weddings are a celebration of love.  They’re supposed to be both fun and meaningful and reflect the couple getting married.  Right?  Isn’t that what it’s supposed to be about?

So, if my friends are celebrating their love, why wouldn’t I want to be a part of that big day?

And third, last, my being a bridesmaid more than once has had no effect at all on my relationship with H.  Why anyone would insinuate that is beyond me.  I spent the first half of my bridesmaid days alone, hanging out with my friends, wearing fun dresses and just enjoying everything.  But now H gets to come with me, and we get to see what other people are doing at their weddings while we dream of one day having our own.

And, most importantly, I never have to stress out about what I’m going to wear.

In conclusion, I wish that I could punch my superior right in the face for saying something so rude to me.  Yes, I’ve been a bridesmaid five times, with another wedding coming up.  No, it doesn’t bother me.  It used to a little, but I have done a little bit of growing up since college, despite what y’all may think.  I don’t know where the expression came from, but I have no fear that I am always, always, always going to be a bridesmaid.  My day will come, and all of those friends will be there for me, whether they are standing up next to me or sitting out in the crowd.

I pride myself in having good relationships with people.  And I am flattered that so many of those people have wanted me to be involved in their weddings.  And I would never, ever say no if someone asked me, because my organized, planning brain secretly (or not so secretly) loves a good wedding timeline.  To me, it is an honor.  And I don’t care that there’s a saying about it.  Weddings are fun!  And I’m a problem solver.  I’m a good person to have standing up next to you.  I know how to lace up wedding dresses properly, I’ve been trained in sizing for bridesmaid dresses, and I have a giant purse full of anything you might need.  I’ll take care of you when you shouldn’t be worrying about anything, because you’re getting married!

So, yes, I’ve been a bridesmaid more than once.  But I love it.  And I’m not scared, because I’ve already found the person who I’m going to marry one day.  I am going to be a bride eventually.  But until then, if I get to dress up and get my hair done and party with my friends, then I’ll take it!

Guy, you’re wrong, don’t even try to argue with me.

-A.

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