Meet Tameka LaShonn
Welcome to my twist on a story that is all too common! I’m a woman infused with greatness because I have great children, awesome friends, a fabulous career, and a steller collection of shoes and scarves. Yet, I find myself single…again.
I have driven myself crazy trying to figure out why…but why torture myself? Perhaps I should tackle the questions I can actually answer like, “What am I going to do with all of this wedding stuff?” Well everyone, here lies the inspiration behind this blog. I, like so many others, refuse to let a beautiful dress and months (maybe years) of preparation go to waste. My wedding day can’t possibly be the most beautiful day of my life. Perhaps today can hold that title.
Journey with me as I share my tranistion from blue to new with you. Together, we can embrace the beauty and the bride within. I’m excited for us! Enjoy!
I envisioned tying the knot in Las Vegas to avoid the hassles that come with planning a major production. I know that the elegance of the wedding has no bearing on the quality of the marriage. In fact, couples with billions have signed the same divorce decree as couples with hundreds. Therefore, I opted to save time and money by planning a friends and family vacation where we’d say I do in July 2015. I bought a replica-designer dress from an online seamstress in Hong Kong . It was stunning, it arrived on my front porch in a plastic bag, and it was only $150! All of my no-fuss eloping plans were coming to life…until he officially popped the question.
The wedding bug bit me hard! I surfed all of the popular wedding sites and scheduled consultations with at least 1.5 million vendors. I fell in love with the planning process. Though we decided to exchange vows in an intimate ceremony soon after the proposal, I still wanted a big celebration where all of our guests could enjoy the festivities. We had already booked the venue and I wanted to host my elegant affair. I felt like fate was on my side. The vendors offered me great discounts for paying in full. All of the decor was Pinterest-inspired and self made. To top it all off, I tried on a $2200 designer dress and found it for $700 at a boutique in New York. Surely, this overflow of favor was Heaven’s wedding present to us. Perhaps the ease and excitement made me a tad bit delusional to some of the relationship issues I failed to investigate.
The wedding celebration was near. With less than 30 days to go, all we needed to do was close out the balances for a few vendors. Exciting times were ahead…so I thought.
I would soon find out that I’d bear the responsibility of paying those balances alone. Money problems I knew nothing about had surfaced. That’s OK though. Marriages have ups and down and we did vow for richer or for poorer. I vented a little, but I took care of business anyway. I chose to buy my own wedding band. We agreed to wait until our big celebration to add a band to my engagement ring and I couldn’t fathom not having one, though I was perturbed that we were 19 days out and it hadn’t already been purchased. Pride, however, convinced me to cover up this reoccurring issue in the marriage in order to save face before people.
The big day was here. My dress was perfect, my makeup was flawless, the kids were excited, and the food was delicious. Most brides are too anxious to really enjoy the day. I was surprisingly relaxed and savored every moment. Little did I know, anxiety was waiting patiently for me around the corner!
“This cannot be happening! This is so unfair! I am enjoying my time, but am I really on our honeymoon alone?”
All of two days after the wedding my world came crashing down. I discovered that the person I married months ago was not the person I thought I’d married months ago. I insisted, however, on making it work. My heart, my home, and my children were incorporated into this marriage. No way was I going to let my investments be for naught.
You see, my heart had been broken before. I married my college sweetheart over a decade ago and spent the past 6 years healing and rebuilding while raising our 3 angels. I had gotten to a place where life was good and I wasn’t looking for love. Love had surrounded me already. I was in love with my children, my friends, my church, my new home, and my new job. In a world filled with assurance, I took a chance on romance and I refused to let it reverse the progress I made. I simply didn’t deserve to be hurt again!
Our photographer finished his work about a month after the celebration. Social media was inundated with tons of photos of our amazing day. The congratulations were abundant and it drove me deeper into despair. Only a few people knew that my husband had been gone for two weeks at this point. The last I’d seen him was in counseling where I thought we were on the verge of reconciliation. No one knew where he was nor did he respond to my attempts to reach out to him. Apparently, he needed more space to collect his thoughts. I prayed that he would see the wedding photos and be reminded of the beautiful relationship we had. That didn’t happen. He called me the very next day to announce that he would not be returning.
“How am I going to recover from this one? Here I stand with a $700 dress, a honeymoon plane ticket, a bunch of wedding decorations, 500 pictures, and no husband to show for it. What are people going to think of me now?”
Mortified isn’t a strong enough word to describe how I felt. I help people for a living and I couldn’t help myself. I have visions and dreams and never saw this coming. I was mad and confused, mostly with God. I couldn’t understand why others survived affairs and addictions and I had to suffer for nothing. Why didn’t God stop me from marrying him? Why did I ever have to meet him?
Thirty days went by with no contact whatsoever. That’s when the healing process began. I passed through sadness, to anger, to relief as more truths and more layers regarding the “stuff” in my marriage were revealed each day. Sure, I’m still confused over why any of this had to happen. I didn’t sign up for “learn another life lesson 101”. What I can say is I am no longer mad at God; I’m extremely thankful. I realized in those 30 days that God was sparing me from a whole lot more that what he was taking me through.
I sure did! I let my children wear their wedding attire to school for picture day. My daughter suggested it and I debated it at first. But I thought to myself, “why shouldn’t they get to wear their outfits again?” They were happy and beautiful. The memories of their outfits are no longer attached to any one person, place, or event. They are connected to a moment they can always cherish.
I can’t foresee every detail of my life’s story. I can, however, chose to keep writing. Life is what you make of it. Be encouraged to make it something wonderful. With that being said, I need to plan my own picture day where I can re-wear my ivory dress that was tailored just for me!