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I Will Never Be the Mother of the Bride, But…

I’m not the kind of woman who gets her nails done once a week. I’ve never gone crazy over expensive shoes and purses. I’m more about utility – black shoes and black purse (once I went a little crazy and bought a red handbag). And rather than worshiping at the counters of Clinique, Bobbi Brown and Estee Lauder, I usually pick up some pressed powder and a lip gloss at Target.

I Will Never Be the Mother of  the

So when my husband and I found out that we were having a baby, I knew I wanted a boy. I figured I was more the boy-mom type. My husband, of course, wanted a boy because, well, don’t all men want a little boy to relive their youth, their glory days, and get a do-over on their not-so-glory days?

Well, we got our wish. We were blessed with a beautiful baby boy. And the past sixteen years have been wonderful. He’s a great kid, okay he’s a teenager so we have that to contend with, but he is the joy of our lives.

There’s just one little thing.

As he gets older I’ve started thinking about the future – college, career, marriage, kids – and it’s made me wonder…did I really think this whole boy mom thing through?

You see, while I’m not all sugar and spice, like Superman and Kryptonite I too have a weakness – weddings. I’m obsessed with weddings – the parties, the gifts, the invitations and, of course, the dress.

And while the dress is an important part of the wedding, nothing and no one is more important than the bride. It’s her day to shine, her day to be the fairest in the land, the center of attention. And if the bride is the most important person, you know who comes next.

No, it isn’t the groom.

The second most important person in a wedding is the mother of the bride.

And that’s where I messed up. Because as a boy mom, the one thing I will never be is the mother of the bride.

Oh sure, I’ll get my obligatory mother-son dance but let’s face it, unless my son and I choreograph one of those dance routines that end up with a million hits on YouTube, our dance will be overshadowed by daddy and his little girl.

As the mother of the groom I can also kiss shopping for the wedding dress good-bye. Oh sure, my son’s blushing bride will probably include me in the festivities, along with her mom and whatever girlfriends she brings along. And she’ll be sweet, she’ll ask me what I think. But it won’t really matter because in the end I’ll just have to smile and keep quiet when she asks which dress I prefer and then picks the other one because her mom prefers lace to beading.

And will it really matter if I prefer a band to a D.J.? What about the cake? Will anyone care if I prefer chocolate pudding to lemon custard? How about the color scheme? Do you really think it will matter if I look better in jewel tones if pastels are more flattering for her mom?

Nope, I definitely didn’t think this whole boy mom versus girl mom thing through very well.

If I had just looked past the brutal teenage years that most moms of girls have to endure, I might have seen that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, I would have been able to keep my eye on the prize and been the mother of the bride.

But at 52 it’s too late now. No more trying for a girl.

All I can do now is prepare myself for the day that my son finds the woman of his dreams. And I will make sure that I win her over by being the best mother of the groom that I can be. I will dance to that D.J., I will eat that lemon custard filled cake, and I will wear that pastel dress.

Because what they say is true, good things come to those who wait. And if play my cards just right, I can be … the favorite grandma.

Originally published in Cobb Life Magazine, February 2015

Tammy DeMel

Tammy DeMel has always dreamed of being a writer. Now at the age of (ahem) 51, she is pursuing her passion after 30 years as a public relations professional. She has just been accepted to a Master's program in writing and began her blog, which can be found at

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Rena McDaniel

Wednesday 11th of March 2015

It is different I have had one of each but what I can tell you is that in my case my mother in law was there a lot more than my mother was in those days and I am very close to my daughter in law. I hope you get the jewel colored dress and chocolate pudding cake every mom deserves it once in their lifetime!


Wednesday 11th of March 2015

Thanks be honest, I would give up the dress color and the pudding cake if only I could be an integral part of picking the dress!

Kim Tackett

Wednesday 11th of March 2015

You know Tammy, you might be surprised at how times are changing. I have two daughters, and the oldest just became engaged to a (wonderful) man who is also an only child. His mom and dad have offered to pay for half of the wedding. Our kids live out of state (we're in CA, the kids are in Chicago, his folks are in Oregon) and the wedding will be in his hometown. The venue's been picked, and his dad put down the deposit. His mom will be as involved as I am (and we're still not sure how much that will be for either of us). But I bought us both matching wedding notebooks! When I was surprised that they were going to pay half (and it's a wonderful surprise, her response was "you have two daughters, I have one son, and now I am getting a daughter too, this is the least we can do." I am guessing you will get the best of both worlds!


Wednesday 11th of March 2015

Oh Kim, I hope you're right! Sounds like you have wonderful new in-laws.

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