Be The Bridesmaid

The Audacity of Being Single

When I was a child, I was in a few weddings as a flower girl. I was an integral part of a loved one’s special day. I got my hair done. My dress complimented the wedding color palette. My nerves gathered as I prepared to spread the flowers down the aisle. I understood at a young age the joy of my presence in a moment. 

As an adult, I learned that being a bridesmaid can often be associated with being single. The association can take away from the joy of being a part of someone’s special day. In a time when more women are choosing to not have bridesmaids and are walking themselves down the aisle, the testament of being a bridesmaid should be one of joy. Supporting your friend or family member is an honor on their special day. Anyone who asks about your personal life, questions your choice of being single, or mutters your presence at the side of the altar instead of at the altar needs to mind their business like the taxes are due soon. Declaring that you are single can inform the person who claims they just want the best for you. 

I do not understand wanting to catch that doggone bride’s bouquet like you’re trying out for the Super Bowl. It’s a silly, fun folklore, sure, but someone might get their toe stepped on reaching for the bouquet! The belief that wilting flowers aligns with their destiny to be partnered is a taboo ideal that may not come true. Being single is wonderfully okay. I do not need to look at myself in the mirror to say that. Celebrate learning about yourself. I will be watching the wrestling match on the dance floor with a piece of cake from my chair.  

The Audacity of Being Child-Free

Chelsea Handler has declared her life will be child-free. She celebrates her decision. A plethora of comments were made against her decision. How dare she hate children!! Chelsea Handler is making her life choices and that bothers people. She is getting paid to declare who she is as a comedian and as a person observing a world where her values are not the norm. She is a white woman with incredible means yet is sharing what is not the norm. 

Rich Auntie is a term for Black women who choose to not have children. The fun auntie who picks up the kids and brings them right back to their sibling’s home. It is love without the responsibility of full-time parenthood. The connection between the auntie and sibling strengthens while caring for the next generation. 

The term “child-free” makes parenthood sound like a burden. Yet someone understanding that they do not want the responsibilities of full-time parenthood is a choice. Marriage decline is rampant. People want domestic partnerships. People are changing their stances beyond the traditional relationship for the greater good. Those changes take time to understand; and some may never understand from afar.

Any Way You Want It

Celebrate people who want to go against the norms. The bridesmaid and the child-free woman often sound like they come with a small violin. But in reality, they are rich harmonies and melodies which make the whole symphony of the human experience that much richer. All of this to say, how you choose to live your life needs to be your business. You declare who you are in the moment. We live in a society that easily wants to impose their thoughts to make you feel small. Be the bridesmaid. Be supportive. Be in the moment in your greatest for the glory of the time. 

Ashley Paul is a traveler, runner, and baker. She is an Everlasting Bookworm and Culture Maven. She is passionate about supporting high school juniors and seniors to write compelling stories for their post-secondary careers. She loves stories with social commentary, atmospheric writing, and compelling characters.

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