Let’s talk about weddings

Let’s talk about weddings. Those festive occasions often called “the night of a lifetime”, where people come together to rejoice under one roof all in the name of happily ever after. After all, what could possibly be better than celebrating true love? It’s a magical night indeed, where life is about to begin for some, and the fruits of their labor are about to be realized. It’s what they’ve spent their life believing is the sole reason for their existence, the only road to happiness and the ammunition against certain cultural expectations. Now before I go off on a tangent and turn this into a massive spiel on marriage, I’m going to stop myself because the purpose of this rant is to talk about how I relate to weddings and not marriage. I have never been married, so I’m in no position to talk about this sacred bond. So, without further ado, I’ll get straight to the point.

I’ll be honest. I really hate weddings. There’s something about them that rubs me the wrong way. The non-stop gossip before and after, the mad rush to buy a dress, the endless hours spent planning, and the need to live up to certain expectations. They’re just so damn annoying. Aside from the aforementioned reasons, weddings for me have always been dread-inducing. The truth is, every time I’m invited to one, my insecurities are increasingly heightened.

In all my years I have never ever attended a wedding except the ones I had no good excuse to skip (relatives, best friends, coworkers wedding date coinciding with a mind block re excuses). Whenever my worst fears were confirmed, and I knew there was no wiggling out of it, a knot would form in my stomach. What the hell am I going to wear? I can’t go in jeans and a top. Don’t get me wrong I love dressing up, but I don’t feel it much when I’m not content with my body. The overthinking is torture, the realization that I really am not satisfied with myself is a killer. I have not once been to a wedding where I looked around at all the people my age in their cute little dresses and felt awful. So, I would just sit at the table with the older bunch and endure talk that I can in no way relate to. And alas, the humiliation of being told by one of the older women to get up and dance with the people my age. How many times have I used the sprained ankle excuse? Or the tummy ache one? When the excuses ran out I would just walk out to the dancefloor in shame, mustering all my energy to hold back the tears that I am absolutely not allowed to shed on such a joyous occasion. One song and then I would go to the bathroom for another 2 so that they would all think I danced for a whole 3 songs. So sad when you think how much I love dancing, but I could not bring myself to enjoy it because my self-consciousness imprisoned me and made me incapable of enjoying even the small moments as I was too busy judging myself. When it was time to leave, I always felt like a child after the first day at school. In my head, I would scream “phew”. Finally, it’s over. Finally, I can just hide from the fear of being noticed. Ironically, deep inside all I want is to be noticed. There is nothing quite like having such a tumultuous misalignment of your soul gnawing away at your happiness.

The saddest part is that I don’t really hate weddings. Deep inside I know I don’t because I know I’m a fun-loving and sociable person who is trapped inside her insecurities and frantically searching for the exit. If I was more content with my body would I enjoy weddings more? I have no clue because that’s not the point even if I’m losing/lost weight. The point that I’ve had to learn the hard way is that it doesn’t matter how big or small I am because the right to enjoy life should not have to discriminate. The right to treat your soul with tender loving care is not determined by your size. Now I know some people will say to me, but that’s not how the world works. Unfortunately, they do have a point. We can try to spread awareness, but we can’t stop others from judging us. That’s on them though. Even if others judge, why am I doing the same? Why can’t I be my own role model? While I’ve made leaps and bounds, it’s a never-ending road and I’m determined to keep driving on the path that’s not hazardous for my sanity.

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