Well, you can tell I'm new to blogging! I created the blog, then typed away my story. I took so long that the page expired and didn't publish or save the entry. So sorry to the two people that viewed to find nothing. Hope this one goes more smoothly!
After reading some of the blogs on this forum, I decided that it would be fun to document and share in my wedding adventures thus far. I call myself a Backwards Bride because that's exactly how things have happened for me, almost all the way flipped upside down! Here I am in the early stages of planning a destination wedding and I'm not even engaged! Not that I haven't tried, I've been down that road twice before.
It seems that as young women, we have been raised to follow a specific order for our romantic lives. First we date, then become engaged, plan a wedding, get married, start a family and for the most part, that is the order most of us intend to follow. In the past few generations the order of things may become a little bit skewed but not many have messed up the order completely, like I have. Planning a destination wedding without an engagement will seem perfectly normal after I explain how my unconventional journey to the alter got me thus far.
Being a forty-two year old wanna-be- bride was never part of my fairy tale. I dreamt of it all- the white dress, the church wedding, gobs of friends and relatives fawning over me and my mystery husband. Now after a couple of decades of life getting in the way, it's time to build a new dream. But first I'll explain some of my backwards antics that led me to this point.
During my early twenties, I met and fell quickly for a man ten years older then me. Not having much experience in relationships, I fell for his charms and well...nice months later my beautiful daughter was born. That's not really anything new as there are lots of young women who find themselves pregnant before getting married. However, the father and I never really dated until after my daughter was born. I gave him space as I didn't want him to feel that he needed to be with me because of our child. But he stuck around and we gave it a go. We had another child (planned this time), and when my son was around a year old and my daughter was ready to start school, I started putting some pressure on Daddy Dearest to get married.
So that following Mother's Day, my gift was to go ring shopping. Woohoo! Ya.... NOT! On shopping day, I met my man on his lunch break at the jewelers and within five minutes, I was engaged.....I think! I tired on a ring, he asked if I liked it, I said yes(what else do you say?) and he paid the lady. She asked me to take it off so that she could put it in the box and he asked "What for?" The sales lady said "So that you can give it to her Sir." (meaning propose). His replied as he headed for the door, "I just did." I was left standing in the store with my children. I'm not sure who's jaw was closer to the floor, mine or the salesladies. After broaching the subject at home it was made clear to me that my ring was in fact a "shut up ring" and I was expected to act as though we were now married. Needless to say I was the one who headed for the door after that.
As much as losing the relationship with my children's father was hurtful, it was more then ten years ago now, and he and I truly do make good co-parents to the kids. We both stayed single for a long time after we separated and eventually we both met other people. I began a relationship with a man that I worked with and had known for many years. Were had been friends and I had known him as a dedicated husband and father who worked hard to provide for his family. We saw it as a sign that we both found ourselves unattached at the same time. We started getting the kids together for play dates and then he asked me out. I was gun shy a little but I thought what the hell, he's a great guy, he's stable and a good dad.
Within a year we had moved in together and gotten engaged! He was really pressuring me to get married, so I started planning the wedding. I bought a dress, put a deposit on the hall, booked a minister, picked and outfitted the wedding party. After an unfortunate lay-off we postponed the wedding for a year. It was how his time off was spent that perpetuated the beginning of the end. While I continued to work, instead of job searching, my fellow was spending all of his time with his daughter. At first I was glad that he was getting time with his daughter but then I found out that he was spending with her mother as well. This behavior confused his young daughter greatly and she expected that her father was coming back to live with the family. He decided that she was too young for the truth and changed the subject when she asked questions instead of being honest with her. Needless to say this caused for her to resent me and the girl rejected me whole heartedly as part of her father's life. The child was allowed to be rude to me and my children and demanded to be taken home to her mother when ever she didn't get her way. Sometimes pick ups and drop offs would last for three hours because they were spending time together. I was devastated when my fiancé told me that his old family was more important the building ours and that I would just have to except that. I did not except that and sent him packing. He did not fight for us and after a few months went back to his first family, where she greeted him with open arms( and legs apparently) as they had another child 14 months after our split.
As much as I knew we were not meant to be together the sense of failure was overwhelming and I felt that I had disappointed my family, my friends, my children, and everyone who knew me. The wedding was off, deposits lost, halls cancelled, dress left hanging in the abyss of an alteration room somewhere.I felt judged and unwanted, and I became a little depressed. It took a couple of years before I could even watch a wedding show and was genuinely bitter towards anyone who made to their wedding day. Before I was to completely become myself again, tragedy hit my family and I lost my mother to Cancer and I began taking care of my dad who was lost without her. Five months after my mom passed he went into the hospital with pneumonia and was diagnosed with last stage Cancer. I was burning the candle at both ends and had still had not grieved for my mother. I was raising two children, in college full time and caring for my father. I was emotional and physically exhausted. I promise the sad part is almost over, for I did not know that a knight in shining armor was on his way to rescue me.......
Next Blog: How the Backwards Bride found her Hero