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It was my dream wedding – the quiet garden with a gazebo covered in flowers, linen-draped chairs for the guests and a lone cello playing soft classics under a weeping willow tree.woman in lace shawl

The bride’s tea-length lace dress with a scalloped edging, a single strand of real pearls around her neck, a bouquet of lavender and baby’s breath. Her hair gathered in soft curls in an upward sweep, held in place by a single band tiara.

Her groom waited beside the gazebo, a look of intense awe on his face. He looked so proud of his bride, so eager to honor and cherish this incredible woman who floated toward him.

But this was not my wedding.

Rather, the setting belonged to a friend who dared to remarry after her abusive marriage finally ended and she healed into a stronger and better version of herself.

One of the most difficult things we will do as we are Starting Over Single is to attend a wedding. It is a reminder of our own wedding day, when we felt so full of love and hope for the future.

Before the promise became betrayal.

We want to rejoice with our friends and our relatives who marry, and we don’t want to appear as if we’re bitter or living in victim land.

So we attend, we smile and we inhale a big old wholloping bite of wedding cake, hoping the sugar will somehow erase our memories of past regret.

And we try not to be jealous. Or bitter.

So how can we deal with weddings while Starting Over Single? How can we genuinely have a good time and deal with our conflicted emotions?

  • Keep the dream alive. Keep hoping and planning for your own wedding. Keep writing in your vision journal about that special day.
  • Stay in hope. We may or may not find that perfect guy who can salve the hurt of the past and give us the commitment we didn’t get the first time. But stay in hope anyway because hope keeps you positive.
  • Trust that God has a good plan for your life, whether or not that includes another marriage.
  • Make a list of the things you like about your friend’s wedding so that you can plan your own – when the time comes.
  • Celebrate the beauty of love. No matter who is sharing it on this particular day, love is a wonderful emotion that feels good and is a blessing to share.

What about you? Do you have some ideas for attending a friend’s wedding?

©2015 Starting Over Single