This is my mom's wedding dress. She wore it to get married in 1959. Since then, it has quietly stayed tucked away in a cedar chest in the guest room. Well, it made an appearance at the 50th Anniversary party, but other than that it has had a very small role in my parents' lives.
Until this past week.
This past week, mom took the dress out of storage, folded it neatly with a note to its new owner, and boxed it to go to Haiti. You see, there are women in some of the slums of Haiti who are seeking a new start. They are seeking to follow the Lord which means leaving their lives of prostitution and starting to set a better example for their children. They are marrying the fathers of those children, setting up households and finding gainful employment.
But most of them have no money for a wedding dress. Nothing that will help them mark that very special day with all the pomp and celebration it deserves. Nothing that tells the watching world that they have a fresh start in life, and they are a bride, and that they are loved.
Mom isn't the only one in our church who has donated her dress. And, like she says, it's about the relationship, not about the dress. But it still wasn't that easy. She thought about all the granddaughters- would they want to wear it for their wedding? No. Most of them have very different fashion ideas or are the wrong size. They would do just fine with dresses of their own. (And I always said I wanted to get married on the beach wearing white jeans, so I was out of the running.)
And so she took a deep breath, made her decision, packed up the dress, and enclosed a note to the new recipient of the dress encouraging her in her new life and wishing her 50+ years of marital happiness- just like she has experienced.
Mom, you never cease to amaze me. Happy, happy Mother's Day!!!