My wedding frock? It was from an aesthetically challenged shop in Haarlem, The Netherlands. It was hidden among a rainbow spectrum of sequin-embellished numbers and cost 700 Euros. I just knew she was a keeper because there was none of that ‘boning’. I was also with my best mate, who was trying on some of the more extravagantly-coloured frocks – we had some laughs; that dress made memories before the big day.
But as fun as that sesh was, I had mid-level palpitations nearer the time that I’d made a grave mistake. Compared to the swathes of gowns in Wedding Magazine, my frock was looking suitably Tesco Value – first world problems, yes, but those glossy rags mess with your head (a Swarovski-encrusted vodka luge; why don’t we have a Swarovski-encrusted vodka luge – who are we?). What was a ‘well-funny’ fizz-induced purchase might actually be a big regret… I was wrong. Two minutes into wed-gate, I had forgotten who I was even marrying let alone the threads keeping me sheathed. It was probably then that I also realised that being on a pedestal and throwing ridiculous money at a shindig was not my bag – I was a much better guest than main attraction (surprising for me, too).
Much like motherhood, I’ve enjoyed the bits that come after all the baby shower/ birth carnage where all eyes (well, four or so people who vaguely care) are ON you. I know they’re special times; I’ve read about it in books and stuff, but it’s the seemingly boring moments of eating toast in bed with the clan that make me thank my lucky – and slighty rusty – stars.
Even better is when you get invited to a wedding as a plus 1 where you know neither bride or groom and end up getting proper mash-up and being ‘that person’. It’s the maternal equivalent of dumping the brood in a posh gaf or restaurant and offering up an entire box of felt tips for them ‘to be creative’ – no paper present. You can be THAT person when no one knows you and it’s such a relief in a world that wafts Instagram polish at every turn.
Then there’s the wedding line where the whole wedding fam line-up to thank you for coming. As a rogue plus one, you’re asked ‘ah so how do you know Lucinda and James’? ‘I don’t, I’m a freeloader who will eat ALL the cake and have already requested Mmm Bop by failed teen 90s stars Hanson I am THAT person.’
How my wedding experience and motherhood unite, I don’t really know. All I know is that in both situations it’s the stuff that the world doesn’t force us to celebrate that make me snort-tea-through-nose laughing. It’s the crumbs in bed after a lazy morning eye-twitching away to Cbeebies, backing your best mate onto a loo in her wedding dress and getting mash-up in a Lebanese dress shop that could ignite at any moment.
This post was written in partnership with fashion website Lyst