I learned from experience. My first time was all about me (or so I thought). I was married at the Beverly Hills Hotel in front of all my friends and family. There was an open bar after the ceremony, and wine flowed freely throughout dinner. It wasn’t until I slipped away to use the restroom that I realized that 20–30 guests were gathered around the hotel bar because my father had stopped the cocktails exactly one hour after the ceremony. And when I walked into the ladies’ room, I could hear the chatter behind the stalls about whose designer dress was the most elegant. It was then I realized that only my closest relatives were truly “present.”

My second time was in the garden at the famous Chasen’s in Beverly Hills. We had twenty-four guests — my parents, his parents, a matron of honor, a best man, and aunts, uncles and cousins. I don’t remember a thing about it.

And my third time, we escaped to Zihuatenejo, Mexico. Just the two of us and a judge. Perfectly romantic.

All ended in divorce. Never again.

Writer and copyeditor. “What doesn’t kill us gives us something new to write about” ~ J. Wright

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