From The Heart: Celebrating the Joy of Marriage After Divorce with a Beautiful Blended Family

Love My Dress wedding blog

I consoled my fellow Love My Dress reader; “It’s OK, I’m pretty sure that’s why most of my friends had babies 10 months after the wedding!” This, along with many other words of wisdom helped a recent From the Heart’ poster when she felt the dreaded post-wedding blues

I’m glad to have helped – I beamed with pride when my quote was featured in the piece. But then it struck me – I’m in my forties, I’ve had children already, got the house, um, what is there to do ‘post wedding’ when it’s all been done already?

My OH (that’s ‘other half’ incase you’re wondering) and I have been together for nine years and having each of us come out of broken relationships with children, we somehow managed to cobble together a family home.

It’s been tough. We’ve come through redundancy, debt, miscarriage, a horrific divorce (me), vicious ex partners (both of us), custody battles, work stress and depression. We always joked that we didn’t need to get married because we had already done it all, ‘in sickness and in health, for better for worse’ etc.

We’d seen friends marry and divorce too many times, we didn’t see the point in tying the knot again. We simply battled on through life with our unspoken, unofficial commitment to one other, that was sealed when our beautiful boy was born three years ago. The fresh wounds of juggling children with our ex partners meant that when our son arrived, we were adamant that ‘we’ were for keeps – wedding or not.

To both of our complete surprise, he dropped down on one knee just after Christmas 2015.  I laughed until I realised he was crying and meant it.

The wedding was set for April 2017 and planning is hastily being undertaken in between work, school runs, homework, sports clubs and the general hub-bub of a blended family-of-five.

How I envy the seemingly care free young brides to be on Love My Dress, travelling all over the country to choose their dress, having whole weekends to craft and describing fabulous honeymoons (we can’t honeymoon as our eldest son will be sitting A Levels and annual leave is in short supply when 3 children are involved). 

So, what will happen after the big day, I ask myself ? And in asking this question, I was led back to our original thoughts. Do we really need to get married

I mulled over this thought for a good while. Then it all came to me…

Yes. Yes we do!

Our wedding day will be a celebration of what we have already achieved. Our moment on the victors podium if you like. The light at the end of the tunnel. We won’t have the anticipation of moving to the bigger house or the ‘when are you having babies?’ question – and that’s ok. We have all of those experiences in our foundation already. We’ve been through the the hard and the great times and know how to tackle any obstacle that will come – we’re prepared to always ‘fight fires’, as my OH says with a knowing smile.

We can have our day of celebration with our boys there, knowing that we love each other and them enough to show our commitment to one another to the world (OK, just 120 people in Staffordshire but they are our world).

Life won’t stop when we say ‘I do’ – it will continue to develop as it has done, with just as much to look forward to as any other newlywed. All of those traditional post wedding life events may have already happened , but that’s just it – they still happened and our next chapter will happen too, only together, as a family. 

So, I can console myself that despite seeing me as a sweaty mess in childbirth and as a screaming banshee when the school run doesn’t go to plan – that he still wants to marry me.  And actually, I am looking forward to a Pinterest amnesty and the end of hearing ‘My Mum’s boyfriend’ ever again! 

Love Zoe x



Our lovely blog reader Zoe has contributed to our ‘From The Heart’ feature – a new Sunday spot on Love My Dress, where we hand the blog back over to our readers to write about all matters of love and life.  If you would like to contribute a From The Heart piece, we would dearly love to hear from you. It doesn’t matter what it’s about and it doesn’t have to be related to weddings at all – we’re looking for honest, authentic, personal, sad, happy, family, relationship, marriage, health, light-hearted, serious, baby, trying for baby, children, career, simple, complicated – real life issues.  We just need you to write from your heart. Keep it upbeat, simple and witty, or share your thoughts anonymously on a more challenging or emotional subject. We’ll edit your final piece to make sure it’s all tip-top.  Please drop me a line on [email protected] with your feature or to ask any questions. Love Annabel x

6 thoughts on “From The Heart: Celebrating the Joy of Marriage After Divorce with a Beautiful Blended Family

  1. Thank you for this. This soul-baring article made my day. It’s really nice to have a fresh perspective on a wedding outside of “the dress” and “the shoes” and “budgets” and the pomp and pageantry. You’re a real person with a life outside of wedding planning and I think we all need to be reminded of the big picture. We’re not getting married just for the fun of having the party, we’re getting married for the life afterwards. I wish you guys the best!! XO

  2. I love this! My husband and I met online when I was 38 and had two daughters and lots of drama including his working abroad and leaving me in the uk with two babies for a couple of years. He proposed at five o clock in the morning whilst leaving home to catch another flight away and we finally got married five years after we met. A very small short and simple wedding later we are still here and have never had a dull moment since the wedding day. The writer was so on point that it is wonderful knowing that your husband has seen you at your absolute worst and still wants to say I do. Priceless

    1. Thank you Bridgette. Yes, there certainly are not going to be any unpleasant surprises for either of us after the big day lol. It’s wonderful to hear your story too xx

  3. Zoe, I’m a fellow 40s, blended family, enough-drama-and-stress-in-our-short-years-together-to-have-broken-us-up-several-times-over, bride! It was lovely to read your words. We married in 2014 and (without taking any romance and importance out of couples marrying for the first time. I so wish I could still be married to my one and only) I think second time was a lot more significant. Divorce (especially with children) truly is emotionally traumatic. To marry again, sometimes feels ludicrous and therefore not something that, personally, I was prepared to do lightly. Three days before the wedding I cried for 24h with the overwhelming emotions of what I was about to do again, with no guarantees of its success. It is harder work this time. We both have strong opinions, baggage, children, exes, insecurities, ways of doing things and issues. Yet we must *adore* each other and feel lucky to have found each other because at times it would have been easier to walk away!!

    You said, “Our wedding day will be a celebration of what we have already achieved. Our moment on the victors podium if you like. The light at the end of the tunnel.” I remember feeling just like that. I wanted our wedding day to be a massive celebration of surviving the emotions and stresses of the few years that came before it. Wishing you much love, patience and ninja wedding planning skills! Have the most marvellous day when it arrives xxx

    1. Oh Katie, this has bought tears to my eyes. Thank you for such a thoughtful, wonderful description of how it all feels . Our day is 13.04.17 and I really look forward to sharing it afterwards. Xxx

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