THE BICKERINGS’ FIRST FITTING

Yesterday was a momentous day because Sara had her first dress fitting, causing me to reflect on two of my former blogs: “Stress Not” and “Neither Rain, Nor Sleet”. I think I was correct when I said that although Sara and I would bicker, I couldn’t imagine us getting into a knock-down, drag-out. Of course I did yell, “GET OUT!” and gave her a “gentle” push out of the car when we got to the train station within minutes of missing our last chance of making our Kleinfeld’s appointment.

The Di Fabbio clan has a history of squabbling; like the time we embarked on a raft trip down the Housatonic. My husband manned the tiller and provided the rhythm section with his incessant command to:“Paddle! Paddle! Paddle!” . My three sons filled in the chorus by whining, “Stop splashing me! Move over! Get out of my way! You’re hitting my oar! Saaaaara!” I punctuated this floating sideshow with periodic warnings to: “Be quiet! Stop fighting! Stop picking on Sara!”

We brought this show along on our vacation to an underground river exploration in Cancun. It was an awesome experience—minus the bickering. We donned lifejackets and then floated our way through this subterranean marvel. Even though there was plenty of room to maneuver , it didn’t prevent us from crowding and annoying each other relentlessly. Every kvetch and criticism echoed loudly and relentlessly throughout the entire tunnel system.

Since this was getting to be predictable behaviour for every family outing, we named our selves, “The Bickerings”. My sons may have outgrown this behaviour but Sara and I have not. Even though Sara should be intimately aware of the fitting/dressmaking process, she is as impatient as me, which results in “Is this supposed to do….?” “Shouldn’t this be shorter?” “Will it be tighter?”

I give her the look that says, “Why are you asking me such a stupid question?” Since both of us speak “look” fluently, she then said, “Well, I didn’t know if you noticed or I just want to make sure it will be tight enough or . . . ” Thank goodness neither of us holds a grudge or takes our bickering seriously. Super good thing; because she asked, “Am I being really annoying?” and I replied, “Yes.” (She wasn’t being that annoying, but I was tired.)

Bickering aside, I enjoyed the fitting, but I’m feeling serious pressure. I know there’s no repeat when it comes to a wedding gown; it’s either perfect or it’s not. She’s not the one who’s obsessing; I am. I’m fearful that I’ll watch her walk down the aisle and think, “I should have . . . “ Of course regardless of how awesomely perfect it is, I’m sure I’ll still be beating myself up because I should have . . .

Part of my dilemma also refers to the “Neither Rain, Nor Sleet” blog where I have been self-righteous enough to preach about not allowing your heart to override your brain. Before Sara got engaged, I scoffed at anyone who spent thousands of dollars on a dress. Well, my heart has already thrown the first punch—and it was a near knock-out. Although it costs less to make a dress than to buy one, it’s not free. In fact, the cost of materials can far exceed what the majority of brides would spend on the finished dress—especially if you’re a fabric-junkie like me.

I’ve already spent a sizable amount. Guess what I’ve purchased? Some of the lace and a few pounds of crystals. Not the 15 yards of silk I’ll need, nor the 20+ yards of trim or the additional yards and yards of lace. (Uh, oh) I’m trying to slow down this runaway train, but I fear it has no brakes. On a positive note, I could win the lottery or become an heiress before the wedding. (Not likely since I don’t gamble and I don’t have any wealthy friends or relatives.)

If neither of those fantasies comes true, at least I don’t have to make all my purchases at one time. I can spread them out over the course of the dressmaking. The woman who purchases a ready-made gown has to make her decision right then and there and either take out a second mortgage or keep it real.

My brain—although groggy—is fighting back; coming up with ways to stay solvent while creating a masterpiece. I’m not sure who’s going to win; maybe it’ll be a tie. But I’m feeling a bit better knowing that if my heart wins the war, I can always hop on the train to NYC and load up on more goodies.