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Brittany: The Bridesmaid Selection

By Brittany Chronley

I grew up empowered by both my parents and basically drinking the Kool-Aid from the Hard Knock School of “Anything you can do, I can do better.” As a result, I feel like throughout my life I have collected a pretty awesome arsenal of really interesting, funny, smart and, above all else, loyal women. Being that I value loyalty above almost all other qualities (I think it means you embody all the other good qualities you want in a partner/friend/family/tribe-member/pen-pal/co-worker/lunch buddy…you get it), it was extra hard for me to hand-pick just a couple of ladies for my bridal party. I felt like by doing this I might be betraying other people I find extreme value in.

Tommy also happens to be a pretty loyal guy — hence why we’re getting’ hitched — but he had his own reservations and guilt with picking.

To mitigate the sting and guilt we were both carrying, we made lists. There were several of them. Typically, lists are my life-line. I create lists for grocery lists, honey-do lists, task lists, wish lists… LOTS. OF. LISTS. But lists failed me on this one. It changed every time. There were long lists. Lists of exclusively family members. Empty lists condemning bridesmaids all together. Twenty-person-deep lists. A list  with just “MOMMMMMMMMMM” scratched on to it.

I would find myself staring at the ceiling at 1 a.m., angsty, wishing we had eloped so I didn’t have to face anyone and reminding myself that this whole ceremony was ultimately about Tommy and I and our love. I would roll over and nudge Tommy, who I wish could tell you was also staring at the ceiling losing sleep too… It would make a really cute RomCom scene, if only he just knew when to be on cue. But mostly, I found him snoring or drooling. Still, I knew that, in-between the loud pitches and saliva yo-yo, he was also worried.

Honestly, I had dreaded this part of getting married for years. Even the day we got engaged, so many lovely people showed up with bottles of champagne, flowers, food and love and my immediate reaction was that I didn’t want to have to choose!

Ultimately, my calculated method was to throw out a method. I picked women who were in my immediate life, had been in my life in the past and who I knew would be there in the future. I picked women who this would be easy for, and some who it might inconvenience. They were related, unrelated, short and tall. I picked ‘em because it felt right and necessary. And when I opened my eyes after the dust settled, there were ten — my lucky number, so it felt like a good sign.

People tell me ten is too many. They tell me I’m crazy for signing up for this kind of rodeo. And you know what? They’re all probably right. But at the same time, they’re wrong! I’m a clear communicator, I’m keeping my expectations low and I’m ready to forge forward as a mighty anti-Bridezilla of ten fearless bridesmaids! Above all, I’m more focused on marrying the man of my dreams — drools, snores and all!

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