February 23, 2010

I am a plus-sized bride.

I've struggled with my weight from a very young age.  I was a size 13/14 by the time I was in eighth grade and I've fluctuated between an 18/20 since I graduated high school.  My body image has been poor for as long as I can remember; it's only been Mr. Dachshund's love that has allowed me begin to view myself in a different light.  When he tells me that I'm beautiful, I know in my heart that he is absolutely genuine.  He makes me feel beautiful.  My self-image has improved exponentially in the time that Mr. Dachshund and I have been together.

It may have been more logical for this post to have gone up around the beginning of my blogging for Weddingbee because being plus-sized is something that so many brides relate to and identify with.  I agree that I should have written this much sooner, but I was so nervous that my size would be the one thing that became my identity as a Weddingbee blogger.  I’m not sure what exactly I wanted to build my blogging identity around, but I certainly didn’t want to become “The plus-sized Bee” right out of the starting gate.

It’s come time for me to share my dress shopping experience, and I don’t think I can do that without this preface.  As a plus-sized bride, every insecurity that I’ve ever had about my body has come flooding back in full force.  I can’t remember the last decision I’ve made for this wedding where the thought of my weight wasn’t in the back of my mind. 

I have an amazing photographer, but I was scared that I’d end up hating our wedding pictures because I didn't think I could be a pretty bride.

Remember my beautiful shoes?  I hesitated buying them because I was worried that they’d look ridiculous on me.

The same goes for veils, makeup, hairstyles… Anything that I can twist in my mind to make myself believe that they’ll draw negative attention and judgment.

The number one, top-of-the-list wedding task that has caused me an endless amount of anxiety has been my dress.  Most brides tackle this task first out of sheer excitement for finding their wedding dress.  It’s something they’ve dreamt of their whole lives and when they find “the one,” it is the moment they feel like a bride.  Me?  I was certain I’d never have that moment.  I was  dreadIng  dress shopping to the point where I’d change the subject should anyone mention it. 

I was terrified of being undressed in a room full of strangers and gorgeous, perfect brides.  I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to fit into any of the samples, or that the consultants would laugh or ignore me when I entered the store.  I didn’t want to imagine the disappointment that I knew I would experience, so I put it off.

I had been engaged for ten months before I considered looking for a dress, and I only did so then because I was afraid I would never find anything if I didn’t.  So, with only three-and-a-half months left until the wedding, my mom, aunt and I went to David’s bridal.

While I didn’t find anything at DB (I knew I wouldn’t), a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders.  I had taken the first step, and it wasn’t bad at all.

I’m writing this because I know there are plus-sized brides out there who are postponing shopping for their dresses because they’re insecure, or just scared that they won’t find anything.  Please believe me when I tell you that I understand just how scary it is.  I’ve been in your position. I’ve shed tears because I never thought I would find a dress that could make me as pretty as the brides on SMP.  But honestly, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I imagined it to be.  Really and Truly.  There are so, so, so many options out there for you; by waiting, it’s you that’s limiting yourself.  You will find something that does make you feel as beautiful as you are in your fiancé’s eyes.

I found my perfect dress, and I’ll share it soon, but I wouldn’t have been able to purchase it had I waited any longer; I was lucky.  So no more waiting!  Grab someone you love and go find the dress of your dreams!

Has planning your wedding brought any of your old insecurities back to front-and-center?

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