The dress

The dress

And we are back to wedding columns…. Throughout the entire experience — and I mean the entire experience, from the first time son #1 came home later than usual from a date through the wedding, I just kept thinking, “Hey, I just got married. Didn’t this just happen to me? (and I guess to husband #1)” So with everything that happened, I thought back and compared it to what was going on with son #1. Because, hey, it DID just happen to me … in my mind.

I still remember that the day after I got engaged, my dad took the day off from work and took my mom and me into the city to try on wedding dresses.

It was a great day. We went to Bloomingdales, to Saks Fifth Avenue. We took pictures, even though we weren’t supposed to. It was all fun and games until we decided to go into Vera Wang. You have heard of Vera. She is the mecca of wedding dresses. The place where women save their money for years and years to purchase one of Vera’s iconic dresses. Well, the large Latkin lady walks into the store, elegance all around, light classical music playing in the background, flutes of champagne chilling on silver platters laced with orchids. Really classy. I am giddy with excitement.

And then the one-dimensional saleslady comes to the door (and when I say one-dimensional, I mean in personality and in physical stature), looks me up and down, and says, “I am so sorry, but even the sample sizes won’t be able to accommodate you. Perhaps you should look elsewhere.” Ouch. Double ouch. The kind of ouch that is only made better with a donut or a piece of cheesecake. And I still managed to find the “dress of my dreams” at Bridals by Roma (is that place still open?) so I hope that saleslady choked on her celery stick. Just kidding. I hope she is alive and well and wearing elastic waistbands.

As mother of the groom, I just assumed that I wouldn’t be able to go with dil #1 to find a dress. That is a mother-daughter experience. But she asked me to go to one of her fittings with her, and it was like a scene in a Disney movie. “Would you like to go to my fitting with me?” she asks, and then cartoon birds holding garlands of flowers start flying around my kitchen and the song “Someday My Prince Will Come” starts playing in the background and all of the princess characters appear, take my hands, and we start doing the hora together — that is how excited I was.

And she looked like the most beautiful princess of all.

After the meeting about the engagement and wedding date and all of that other stuff I realized that I was going to have to get a dress. The color? Slate blue. I can do slate blue. It’s not yellow, which was a personal nightmare of mine. I would be wearing a yellow dress and the caterer mistook me for a banana. It wasn’t pretty. But slate blue was totally doable.

For my boys’ bar mitzvahs, finding a dress was the biggest challenge (no pun intended). I still remember shopping for a dress in the Island of Long for son #1’s bar mitzvah, and my thin friend saying, “Wow, I never realized how hard it is to find something to wear when you aren’t a size 6.” Good times.

But it was a miracle. And a sign from God that son #1 was marrying the right girl…. I found the dress in the very first store I went to, and it was the only dress I tried on. I looked at the saleslady and said, “Is it really possible that I will buy the only dress I tried on? Do I really not have to go anywhere else?” It was amazing. I sent a picture of the dress to dil #1 for her to approve the color, and once I got her approval it was smooth sailing. Especially because the woman who fixed the dress used to be husband #1’s babysitter! Another fun fact — I actually met the dress designer in Israel. It was very exciting for me, probably not as much for her, but what can you do.

And there you go. We all had something to wear, and it was beautiful. Their lives together should be even more beautiful!

Banji Ganchrow of Teaneck is sitting in the dermatologist’s office with husband #1 because she is a supportive wife. And because she had nothing else to do so early in the morning — but more because she is supportive.

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