I’ve lost weight. Actually 6 lbs. I’ve stopped eating fried foods, Starbucks sweet drinks, and barely drink alcohol. I work out about 2-3 times a week, depending on how much time I have left in the day. My bridesmaid dress for Cayla’s wedding fit like a glove and it was two sizes smaller than my wedding dress. And when I tried on pants, I was a size 14! My goal for May was a 12. So I’m happy with that.
So I knew walking into Lisa’s (Justin’s mom) room that my dress was absolutely going to fit. In March, it zipped all the way up, but it was a little tight around my rib cage making it hard to breathe. I didn’t want to pass out at the alter because my dress was too tight. So I’ve worked hard. Definitely harder than before. And when I saw her pull out the dress, I just knew it would fit. I just had this magical feeling…..
But the moment she started to put on the bra and I realized it was tight, feelings of March came rushing into my mind. Oh please fit…please, please fit, I begged.
The bra fit. Okay, next please!
My dress. The dress I bought a year ago. The dress that I’ve been making payments on ALL year! My dress.
Up it went. First over my curvy hips and then across my broad shoulders.
I felt her start zipping it up and then she stopped. She let out a sigh.
Its not going to fit. Why won’t it fit? Why doesn’t it zip?
“Honey,” she said.
But I finished her sentence, “It won’t zip will it.”
Tears started to fill in my eyes. What am I doing to do?
I can’t even write this without tears splashing on my key pad like rain on the windshield of your car on a stormy, dark night. But I’ll keep going…
“Well, let me call up grandma,” she said.
So Grandma Lahman came upstairs too.
Trying to help myself from bawling, I said, “Man, I feel like I need a squat force to get me into this thing.”
But it wasn’t funny. The fact of the matter was I can’t fit into now.
And I didn’t. We tried it with the padded bra. With a regular bra. Without a bra. It still won’t zip…
His mom and grandma reminded me that I am beautiful. Everything will be fine. I’ll call my mom’s friend who does alterations. We will fix it.
But I was the broken one. I was the one who needed fixed.
I kept myself together for the most part and called my mom.
As soon as she said hello, I burst into tears.
“Mom….It just doesn’t fit.. I don’t know what to do. I doesn’t fit,” I said with my voice cracking and tears steaming down my face.
“Ashley, I don’t understand, how does it not fit?” she said.
I jumped into the shower. Justin’s family was here and I was in no state to smile. Once I got into the shower, I lost it. Completely. Uncontrollably starting crying.
How? Why? What can I do? I can’t afford a different dress. I can’t afford $300 in alterations.
I won’t be a beautiful bride. I won’t be a beautiful bride. I won’t be a beautiful…
Then I sank to the bottom of the shower. I just squatted there letting the hot water splash onto my head.
Just then I heard a knock on the door. It was Justin’s mom. God love her. She is a true angel.
“Ashley, are you okay?”
I thought about lying. I thought about saying yes. I didn’t want to look weak, but the truth is she probably hear my sobs a mile away.
“No,” I said. And then I let my emotions take over me. I told her I don’t know how I’ll be beautiful and its so depressing.
She reminded me that I’ll be a beautiful bride no matter what my dress looks like and told me that we have options. Alterations. A new dress. But I can’t afford either…and she told me not to worry. Maybe we can sell my dress on eBay.
I got out of the shower and ran into the room. I didn’t want anyone else to see me like this ,but sure enough Justin saw me.
“Heyyy baby girl,” he said from downstairs.
I said nothing.
He walked into the room, “Baby girl?”
But my back was away from him. I didn’t want him to know I was so hurt. I didn’t want him to know my dress didn’t fit after I’ve worked so hard and spent so much money.
But I turned toward him and he saw my blood shot eyes and tears pouring down my face.
With a single breathe that I managed to gather, I said, “It doesn’t fit. It won’t even zip.”
“What?! I don’t understand! How does it not fit now?” He said.
No one knows. I don’t even know. But after him reminding me that I’m beautiful and telling him how much he loves me, we concluded my shape has changed. I’ve been doing arm and back exercises at the gym. Not to mention the heavy scuba gear I’ve lugged around on my back all semester.
But my dress still doesn’t fit.
But we have options. And as Justin and his family reminds me that I’m still beautiful, I can’t help but feel hopeless. I can’t help but have all of my emotions come rushing back to me when I had eating disorders. I saw myself as a fragile teenager again wishing so hard to be something I’m not. And not capable of ever being…You see, its not just the fact that the dress doesn’t fit. Its my history that is haunting me….
So I might be Cinderella, but the wrong dress fits. The dress for my best friend’s wedding fits, but the dress for my own wedding doesn’t fit.
But I am reminded of a recent blog post, “Like is 90% what happens to you and 10% how you react to what happens to you.”
So this is my reacting…..I have tears, but I am confident. I am broken, but I am piecing myself back together.
So for now, everything is out of my control. A new dress or alterations are my only options. But if I believe I am beautiful, I will shine with beauty. And if I believe that everything will be fine. Then it will. It must.
Just as I was about to publish the post, Justin walked into the room. He was smiling in his boxers after he rolled out of bed and looked like Brad Pitt. My Brad Pitt.
He came up and gave me a kiss. I’m dressed up for church so I do look rather nice.
“You look very sexy baby,” he said. He is my prince and I’m his Cinderalla. For real. So let the wrong dress fit. Maybe this was supposed to happen….