Weddings are not always sunshine and rainbows…

Who would have thought a small wedding on the sandy beach of Mexico could bring so much disaster?

Everyone always has a story about their disastrous bridesmaid dress; like the dress being the colour of vomit or the fit looking like a rubbish bag hanging off of you. But not me. My bridesmaid story is disastrous in another way, it was the last time my family was truly happy.

The first and only time I was a bridesmaid was when I was four years old. It was my auntie and uncle’s wedding. It was a small wedding with just 6 guests on a sandy beach in Mexico. I remember it was like paradise. This was the last holiday that I had been on with all my family before my parents split up and everything was perfect, the weather, the views, the food. I remember being so content. This was the last time we were happy as a whole family.

Even though I described the holiday as being like paradise, in actuality it was far from that.
There was the incident in which I was hit by a swing and got a black eye, days before the wedding.
The hotel we stayed at in Mexico was a family resort so there was a small play area with a kids pool, park and other activities for children. The incident started when I wanted to join my brother on the swing. The swing was made of wood and it was designed for two people and positioned as if you were sitting on a horse, but it was a singular stick of wood. No idea how it was comfortable. Anyways, I ran towards my brother, who was sat at the front of the swing, and did not see the other older boy sat behind him. I was a small 4 year old so when I ran towards my brother, determined to spend some time with him. The swing hit me straight in the eye. The sheer force of the swing from the older boy sent me flying backwards, and I hit my head on the edge of a pavement slab. All I remember after that was my older sister running towards me in her sparkly union jack bikini. I got a nice shiner just in time for the wedding.

The wedding consisted of my mum, dad, my Uncle Darren, my brother and sister and the bride and groom; Auntie Clare and Uncle Craig. My brother was the ring bearer decked out in the usual attire, black trousers, light blue shirt, black tie and a black waistcoat. Me and my sister were the bridesmaids. Dressed head to toe in the same outfit with a few minor differences. She had white small kitten heels on, and I had white sandals on with a small block heel. She held a bouquet of flowers and I had a corsage on my wrist. The bridesmaid dresses were exactly the same. Made out of silk, a dark purple/ plum short princess silhouette dress. The top half had separate pieces of material crossed over one another then tied at the back. It was also worn with a shawl made out of the same colour and material.

I will always remember the feel of the dress, it was so soft on the skin. I remember I actually asked my mum if I could sleep in it. I used to keep the purple silk shawl shoved in my drawer and some nights I would wrap it around myself and I would sense this feeling of happiness. The dress meant so much to me, I was in paradise. I felt like a princess.

A year after the wedding, my dad found out my mum was in love with another man. And thus caused the separation of my parents. My dad never got over the betrayal and I don’t think my mum ever forgave herself for what she did. I think that’s why I clung onto the memory of the dress and the holiday wedding. It was the last memory I have of my family spending time together, laughing, celebrating and the last time my family was happy.

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