“As long as you hate, there will be people to hate.” – George Harrison
There’s a lot of talk about hate lately, so let’s chat about love. Therapy time y’all. So, I know that most people will look up to their parent’s relationship as either a deterrent or encouragement to have the first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes you with a baby carriage moment. However, for me it would be hard to compare anything to my parent’s relationship. I actually don’t remember them together too often. Kissing or fighting. I do remember every Christmas my father hiding a small box of jewelry among the branches. That is now the epitome of romance to me. My mother always put up with my father’s shit and that is also the epitome of romance. But at the end of the day, it’s hard to look forward to something that really wasn’t there for me. Without any real concrete visualization, it’s hard to create a dreamy ideal.
As you know, I was number three of four sisters. My parents (mother) had her hands full. So, I ventured to look for idyllic love elsewhere. And I found it. On two occasions. I am blessed to have had friends whose parents taught me the value of a solid partnership. A concrete barrier against the voided world. One, whose parents would sit hand in hand at every sporting event, laughing at some inside joke. Their eyes would seriously shine bright like diamonds when they looked at each other or their daughters. Seriously. Nicholas Sparks shit. The other family, happy in their roles and the life they created together. You instantly knew they respected one another and that their home was a refuge for family. I can’t help by smile thinking about both of these families and I am eternally grateful for the love and compassion they showed me just by being in close proximity.
This taught me how to love my husband. Not taught in the literal sense, anyone would love him. It taught me how amazing love could be if I ever did find a good kind of love. And it worked! I like him okay. Marriage is hard, it’s not as easy as my juvenile lens led me to believe it was, but it is awesome. You get to live with your best friend. You are allowed the beautiful morning moments, the cherished audibly-shitting moments, the sincere hand holding moments. They are yours. You don’t have to share them with anyone else but your love (unless you have a blog and you’re telling everyone right now). It’s a miracle we are able to find people who we love enough and who like us enough to deal with us for our whole lives.
Of course, I have three people that are forced to love me their entire lives. My sisters. I, like J. Cole, am a middle child. Number 3 of the 4. The “Piper sisters”, “shitheads”, whatever you want to call us. We are all radically different, yet the same. It’s nice to have strength in numbers, because I know there is always someone to call that can help me or give me advice or lie to me. Megan, to get me pumped up for an argument or feel like someone has my back. “Hell no!” is her catchphrase and I dig it. Phyllis, the sister closest in my age and therefore someone I can bond over our current life journeys together. Motherhood, sisterhood, significant others – nothing is off limits. And Nicole, my littlest soulmate (er – second littlest. “Hi Mateo!” mommy loves you). The one who gets me without me having to explain. The one I told to stand on my shoulders, because I got her. All my sisters are crazy, but only I’m allowed to say that.
There is love everywhere you look. I challenge you to look for the love in your life. Whether it comes from your oldest friend that you met at four years old in summer tennis, or the golden goddess friend you met while both trying to win free Diary Queen, your neighbor who sends sweet treats, you dearest best friend/husband, the friend you can travel the world with, the one where distance doesn’t matter you’re always you with her, your new friendships, your co-workers, your babies, yourself. Love is around everywhere.
Let’s play a game called “which one of my loved ones actually read my blog”. I’ll let you know on my Instagram who tells me first!
Why you all came here – since love is in the air, here are some tips on surviving wedding season!
- Clothes are expensive – get some good deals by shopping online at sales. Lulus has a plethora of a sale section. I just got this dress for $14! Shop sales ahead of time and you’ll always have something available for any occasion.
- Rent the Runway – I know you’ve heard of this clothing service already, but this website is an awesome way to get new high end clothes for an affordable price. I wore this dress to a formal Vegas wedding from Rent the Runway and loved it!
- Get some dresses that you can change the look of. This dress I found at Commonroots Boutique (a local shop that gives a portion of it’s proceeds to charity!). It’s perfect for dressing up or dressing down, depending on the formality of the occasion.
- Destination weddings are becoming a more frequent occurrence. Check out my post here for some boho wedding makeup I did for my Mexico designation wedding. Like dresses, buying early and on sale will save you TONS on hotel and airfare. I usually use Kayak for airline searches and hotel.com for hotel searches. Also, if you have friends going, you can always rent an airbnb and make it a big vacation party!
- If you’re single, embrace this season! Especially if you are going to a destination wedding! Traveling alone is the epitome of chic. You can stay as long as you want, hang out with your friends when you want, explore whatever you want. I encourage you to embrace this.
- If you’re an introvert like I am, pump yourself up for some socializing. It’s inevitable. The bridal showers, the bachelorette parties, the actual wedding. It’s a necessary evil. You can always claim diarrhea and make a run to the bathroom for a few minutes to get some alone time.
- Take care of yourself. Mental and physical fitness are important, especially around all this happiness. When you look good, you’ll feel good, but also, when you feel good, you look good. Radiating that confidence is key. So, take some time away from your busy schedule or doting on everyone you know and take care of you boo.
- Absorb that happiness. Take the time to drink the free drinks, eat the free food, listen to the music and enjoy the moment. You don’t have to be taking pictures and running around crazy, just enjoy being around two people in love.