A Humbling Experience

— Dana

I was a bridesmaid for the first time today. All month I pondered what a bridesmaid looked like and what job duties they usually performed. I mean come on…I got married once…I had bridesmaids of my own. You would think that I, of all people, would know what to do as a bridesmaid. It was suppose to be easier than being a bride…or so I thought.

First, I went out and got a mani/pedi a few days before the wedding…and I also found a sweet deal on spray tans so I did that, too. I went in and had my hair cut and colored the morning of the wedding. I even went and had my make-up done a few hours before pictures so that it would last through out the entire evening. I even went so far as to try to lose 15 lbs. before the wedding so that I wasn’t the “fat bridesmaid”…

Honestly, this is what I “thought” I needed to do before I stood in front of 200 guests at my friend’s wedding. The problem was…and here is the humbling part of this whole process…it’s not about me!!! I don’t know how many times I have to remind myself of that simple truth. I say that because: my nails chipped an hour before the wedding, my spray tan wasn’t as “smooth” as I thought it would be (compared to just going into a tanning booth for months before the wedding), my hair was a little too short for any up-do’s (overall, I think I will enjoy this hair style all summer…and the color is great), I also got a HUGE zit on the end of my nose, I didn’t lose any weight, and I got blisters on both my big toes from the shoes…not to mention I forgot to spray “Scotch-Guard” on my dress shoes to keep the red die from coming off…and then there was the make-up.

I don’t know how else to put this…but the lady made me look like a drag queen (or more like Boy George). I asked her to do a “natural look and accent my eyes a little.” She apparently interpreted that to mean “I want black eyeshadow covering my entire eyelid, gobs of eyeliner and mascara with a reddish tint foundation…oh and make sure you accent the giant zit on the end of my nose…better yet, make it look more like a beacon.” The worst part…she never once gave me a mirror…so I had no idea what she was doing to my face. My eyes kept watering from all the make-up, and she just told me to keep my eyes closed and it would stop soon. As soon as I was done, I walked out to my car (not even looking at a mirror)…and when I got in my car, I looked at my face in the rear-view mirror and almost freaked out. I drove home as fast as I could and thought to myself “maybe if I just take a little bit off with some make-up remover, it will be okay…and then I can just just apply some of my lighter make-up that I have at home over this mess.”

WRONG.

My mom showed up at my house an hour early…just as I was taking off my black eyeshadow and mascara (I told her not to look at me because I was hideous…and I hid my face from her. As soon as I dropped my hands she said, “where is my daughter, and what have you done with her”.). I was so grateful that she was there…just her presence calmed me down a little bit. Soon, I ran out of make-up remover and started to panic. I called Macy’s at Northtown Mall to see if they had any openings to help me remove my make-up and redo the whole thing. After being passed around to different make-up counters, one super sweet lady said “if you can come in right now, I think I can fit you in.”

Beth was such a God-send!!! Not only was she able to remove all the make-up that the other lady had caked on my face, she cleansed and re-applied some make-up that looked exactly like I asked for the first time. A group of old ladies walked by just as Beth was finishing…and then they double backed just to tell me how gorgeous I looked…which really helped me feel better about the whole situation. Beth Lavelle is a fairly well known Christian singer…and we just had the best conversation while she was doing my make-up…ah…such a blessing!!!

So, what am I trying to say? Well, when life throws poop at you, make poop juice. Okay…that’s not really the point. The point is I learned that being a bridesmaid is not about how good I look or what I need to do to myself externally. Because I did all that stuff and it didn’t bring me any joy…just more trouble. As I look back on the last week, the Lord taught me how to be a humble servant to others instead of always serving myself.

Other Things I learned this week:

1. If you don’t like how the make-up lady does her own face, it’s okay to tell her that you don’t want her to do yours!!! She has a different view of “beauty” than you do.

2. I love my mom…she just has this ability to be at the right place at the right time when I need her the most. Nothing can replace a mom.

3. I need to do things when I think about them the first time, or write myself a note to do it later (ie I wanted to spray Scotch-Guard on my shoes when I picked them up from David’s Bridal, but the bride told me to wait and do them at the same time with the other girls. I should have written down a reminder for myself…)

4. I love my husband…he ran all the way home to get me some stuff so that I could fix my chipped nail polish. (We also forgot the camera…so it was a good thing he ran home.)

5. My outer appearance doesn’t matter.

6. I think I want to grow my hair out a little more.

7. The Lord has been creating these weird circumstances in my life lately, but through those sticky situations I have been meeting some amazing people…I think Beth Lavelle is my new favorite person by the way.

8. I am not a high maintenance type of girl.

9. High heels shoes make for great aerating equipment for your lawn.

10. You cannot control what happens in an outside wedding like you can with an inside wedding.

11. Zits will appear in the worst spot on your body, at the most inconvenient time. I think the Lord has a funny sense of humor.

12. It’s awkward when you’re standing in front of a large group of people, and you really want to scratch the inside of your leg…because sweat is dripping down your thigh.

13. People need to hear a word of encouragement more often than I think. I really want to work on telling people that I appreciate who they are or what they are doing…because it just makes life a little bit easier when someone says “hey, you look pretty” or “keep up the good work”.

14. If you are going to re-gift a present from Christmas 2006 for a wedding gift…make sure you at least unwrap it from its original wrapping to make sure the original giver didn’t write a personal note to you in your gift. (Aaron and I didn’t do this, but I know someone who did…and we had to go and carefully unwrap the gift during the reception and take out the writing that was intended for the person and not the bride and groom. Then we had to get it back in the wrapping paper without ripping it. Overall, it was a very humorous situation…)

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