Unconciously, I have two conflicted self-images: Jana the Bride — prim and proper, lovely and dignified — and Jana the Wife, or as I want to be, “the Wifey” (I believe there is a difference). After years of reading Glamour, The Knot, and Brides.com, Jana the Bride kidnapped Jana the Wifey, tied her up, put duct tape on her, and threw her far into my subconcious. Jana the Bride tried to convince me that Bride and Wife are the same thing. That wedding and marriage are the same thing. Bull shit.
Jana the Wife wanted to wear a great dress, to look into her husband's eyes, claim her love, loyalty, and life to him, then dance the night away with the best food ever, care- free, with the best pictures a girl could dream of.
Jana the Bride, for some reason, wanted embroidered napkins, perfect plates, champagne colored champagne glasses (lol), exquisite decor, a fabulous venue in a far far away, impossible location — one that none of her family could afford. WTF, JANA THE BRIDE!? Are you insane!? YOU can't even really afford that.
My priorities got majorly fuckered up. I have decided now to not throw a wedding. I have decided to throw a marriage. I am no longer going to be a bride in all of its “impossible standards” glory. I am going to be his WIFE. I will throw my wedding HERE. I will have a dress I love, even if it's not pearlized, beaded, strapless, blindingly white, and oh-so-perfect. I will wear a dress that I think I look stunning in, have my auntie make my wedding cheesecake, dance the night away in my husband's arms while the world fades away. If things aren't perfect… well, I'm an artist, imperfections ARE perfect. If the speakers go out, I'll get one of my fifty cowboy cousins to blast music from their pickups. I will have my perfect marriage. And I will set my damn priorities back in order.
I am a changed woman — a wife-to-be instead of a bride-to-be. So ladies, I propose to you to join me, and throw a marriage, and not a wedding.