Saturday, August 14, 2010

We came. We conquered. We bought.

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned OR a bride-to-be stalking a sale at a bridal shop. With the wedding mere weeks away, we had to find the perfect gown. And guess what? The local bridal shop just happened to be having a fantastic sale. Armed with my checkbook and having no idea of the imminent danger I faced, I accompanied both daughters to the store.

She’d done her research. Surfed the net and decided on just what type of gown she wanted. The store’s website provided a sneak preview of the lovely dresses crowding the racks. I never realized until we stepped through the doors just how many people shop for wedding apparel. Yes, I know it’s summer, the season of love. But GEEZ, the store brimmed with future brides and their muscle.

We spied the section marked “SALE” and made a bee-line for it. Daughter #1 started at one end, Daughter-to-be-married headed for the other. I dove into the middle of the fray, prying dresses free of their protective plastic and holding them up for my children to rate.

Daughter-to-be-married perked with interest at about the third dress I’d fished out of the over-stuffed wall of silk and tulle. Daughter #1 came up behind me, leaned in close and whispered, “Mama, whatever you do, don’t let go of that dress.”

The tiny hairs on the back of my neck immediately stood on end. Hackles raised, I glanced to the right. Three women glared at me as if I stood between them and their last meal. My survival hearing picked up the desperate hiss the young girl in the middle whispered.

“Momma, I want THAT dress.”

I locked my arms around the waist of the gown and through bared teeth instructed my daughter. “Get your sister over here now.”

We stood as one. The coveted dress locked in my arms and marched victoriously to the dressing room to try on the prize.

The dressing room assistant asked my daughter her size. After all, one must have the proper undergarments to fully appreciate if the dress will work. She returned with a bustier and one of those smoothing half slips that squeezes everything into all the right spots and then slicks it down so the faintest dimple doesn’t show.

I didn’t really understand why daughter needed such a contraption. She’s quite a petite young thing. But what do I know of high fashion? My idea of dressing up is ironing my jeans. So, she stepped into the suction cup slip and we started pulling it into place. After considerable hopping and expelling of breath, the torture chamber finally locked and loaded.

And then came the bustier. A frustrating contraption with fifty-bazillion hook and eye closures running up the back. I eyed the thing and asked, “I’ve got to fasten EVERY one of them?”

Daughter nodded, holding it in place, she gave me her back and said, “Go for it.”

The bustier was as bad as the peel-and-breathe slip. It was like stuffing ten pounds of sugar into a five pound bag. “Exhale more,” I instructed as I yanked it tighter around her.

“If I exhale any more, I’m going to pass out.”

She reddened a bit from lack of oxygen but we finally clamped it into place. Then I slid the dress down over her head and zipped it.

She stepped out of the dressing room to examine the results in the triple mirrors. The glaring enemy dress stalkers stood nearby but when I viewed my daughter, I felt no fear. I felt only pride at the lovely young woman on the pedestal.

We bought the dress and emerged unscathed from the shop. I’m just hoping when my other daughter decides to marry, I’m given enough time for a few preparation workouts at the gym.