The Bouquet Toss
Love is in the air! One of my close girlfriend’s got married 2 weeks ago. Yes, we lost another member of the Single Girls Club. But we lost her to an amazing man. Seeing the two of them together makes me know if it possible not to settle. You can and will meet your soul mate if you are willing to be patient and wait for the right man and if you keep the faith that it will actually happen. You know the best way to make God laugh… tell him YOUR plans! Wow… I’m digressing already. It’s just so refreshing to be around two people who genuinely love each other. When the couple said their vows to each other (they wrote their own) I do not think there was a dry eye in the vineyard. And speaking o the Vineyard, the location was magical. The key to a great wedding outside of the couple, venue, food, open bar (a must), and the guest list is the music. If all of those elements are in place the wedding is destined to be a memorable event. And this wedding was nothing short of just that, a great celebration.
But there is a point at every wedding that makes me have a slight anxiety attack… The bouquet toss. When I was 12 years old, my uncle got married. And me being young and competitive even at that age, decided to go out in the middle of the floor with the rest of the single ladies for the bouquet toss. Yes, my 12 year old ass was out on the floor waiting to catch the bouquet. And low and behold, to the dismay of the older single ladies who were out on the floor, I caught it! I did a victory dance and celebrated my victory. I was going to be the next person to get married! Did I mention I was only 12?!
I didn’t notice the rolling of eyes and disdain on the other single women until a manicured finger tapped my shoulder. I turned around and it was my Aunt. My aunt was a true diva! As a matter of fact, this was the aunt who inspired me to move to LA when I was just young. She worked in the entertainment industry and had many stories to tell about the stars back in that day. She owned every piece of Louis Vuitton luggage you could imagine and she had presence. AND she always had a mouth on her. You haven’t been cussed out until you get cussed out by my Auntie! And she will do it with class. Just to give you an idea of her personality, back in the day, when we went to pick her up from the airport (pre 9/11 days when you could greet people at the actually gate). She walked off the plane in a fur coat with her Louis Vuitton luggage in tow. And she overheard a French woman speaking to her friend in French about her disapproval of her wearing a fur coat. Little did that woman know my Aunt spoke French fluently, my aunt walked over to her and Read her in French. I still remember to this day, they woman’s jaw dropping. It was a scene straight out of a Jackie Collins novel. Anyway, I say all that to make a point. My auntie did not have a filter and said whatever was on her mind. Even to a little 12 year old! When she tapped me on my shoulder, I turned around to see her annoyed face, I knew I was about to get in trouble for something.
Auntie: Give me back that bouquet!
Auntie: You are only 12 years old! The bouquet toss is for the single woman. You are fucking up a sacred tradition!
I knew better than to argue with grown folks. So I reluctantly handed over the bouquet. My aunt marched over to the DJ and had them do it again and I sat my twelve year old ass on the side lines and watched grown woman tackle each other in their Sunday best and fight until someone came up victorious with the bouquet. Later that evening, my Uncle’s wife gave me her bouquet and I got my picture holding it.
So… what is the point of me rambling on and on about this bouquet? Well, the point is, from that moment on; I understood the sacredness of the bouquet toss. Single women lived for it. BD (before divorce) I was one of the single hopeful women that would march onto the dance floor in hopes that I would catch the bouquet and have the good luck to know I would get married next. Even once I was engaged and married I enjoyed watching the single ladies go up for this tradition. It’s always touched my heart.
However, you know life. You know how various life events draw a line in the sand and you’re officially changed. Your life is divided into two parts “before the shit happened” and “After the shit happened.” And it didn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. It’s just life… happens.
AD (after divorce), I haven’t gone up for the bouquet toss. I revert back to that twelve year old little girl who understood the importance of women who had never been married having their moment of hope. That moment was sacred. So I sit in my chair and watch from the sidelines. And the inevitable happens. I get the looks from well meaning friends with the look of:
Why aren’t you going up there?
And I know it comes from a place of concern. They want to make sure I am okay. My anxiety doesn’t come from being sad about it, but it comes from knowing that I am going to have a minute of having to explain to someone why I am not going up to participate. And I don’t want to explain at a WEDDING that since my DIVORCE I no longer thought it was fair of me to go up for the toss. I had already experienced being a bride. In all actuality I was not single; I would never be single again. I am a divorcee. And please, Don’t cry for me Argentina. I am okay with that. I wear this badge with honor. I am thankful for the person I have become AD. And I know one day I will experience walking down the aisle again. I am also fully aware this is one of my own quirks. But for now, when you see me or any other woman who is divorced sitting on the sidelines during the bouquet toss portion of the wedding reception, don’t look at us with pity, don’t think we are having a sad moment. We are all good. But sometimes we divorcées like to give our single sistas their moment. Been there, done that… can write the book! LOL!