On May 18th I led a flash mob through Brighton and renewed my sologamy vows on the beach, to mark my four year self-wedding anniversary and the launch of my novel on self love – Reader, I Married Me.
I chose to marry myself as a commitment to be responsible for my own happiness. If you nurture the relationship with have with yourself, it should benefit all of your relationships in life. After all, the more you deal with your own crap, the less others have to, right?
I still embrace romantic love and I am not against weddings, marriage or couples at all. I just think that self love should be equally as important. This applies to everyone, regardless of your relationship status. In fact, when you have a partner and kids you’re even more likely to neglect yourself as you spend a lot of time channelling your energy into your family.
Some people have questioned why it’s necessary to make such a grand gesture. Well, in our society there is still a lot of stigma around being a single person – you are often treated as though you are sad, incomplete and not-yet-grown-up. Unlike other cultures, we do not have a ritual to mark our development as an individual and so, in the absence of such a ceremony, I decided to borrow from the format of a wedding.
Being a sologamist has honestly been so rewarding. If I have a bad day, I often find myself returning to my self-love vows; to face my disappointments, accept my failures and embrace my dreams. It is, of course, not always so easy – but I have tried very hard.
And, in a serendipitous turn of events, one of my childhood dreams has now come true. My first novel, READER, I MARRIED ME, was published on the date of my self-wedding anniversary – 18th May. Though fiction, it is loosely based on my own experience and has been a wonderful opportunity to explore the many layers there are to self love. My aim is to inspire other people who’re in need of a self-esteem boost.
To celebrate how life-changing these past few years have been, last Saturday I led a wedding flash mob through the streets of Brighton to the seafront to reaffirm my vows, and we performed a synchronised dance to The Greatest Showman’s ‘This Is Me!’ See the video of our dance HERE.
To say the day blew me away is an understatement; I’m still basking in the afterglow. Our incredible Brazilian choreographer, Marta Scott, taught us some sassy moves and crowds gathered to watch us as we surprised them with our dance on the beach – clapping along and whooping.
Despite the forecast rain, the sun emerged, casting everything in a beautiful rose gold light. We moved in time to the beat of the song; hair flying, dresses swirling, feet stamping – like true self love warriors. Everywhere I turned I saw the familiar faces I love so much awash with joy, against a backdrop of sparkling sea.
Then my mate, ‘the pope’, resplendent in his maroon robes, asked me to reaffirm my self love vows. The crowd applauded as I promised to continue taking care of myself and to be my own best friend.
In the evening I had my book launch at vintage clothing store, Beyond Retro, where I got my beautiful wedding dress. I gave a speech and got quite choked as I thanked those in the room who have been such an amazing support. We all have days when we wonder what the hell we’re doing and writing a book can be a very solitary pursuit, especially about a subject that has become quite controversial. There were times when I believed the negative troll rants but it’s been my friends and family who have buoyed me up and kept me going.
As I look through all the stunning photos from my sologamy flash mob, I feel pretty emotional. I renewed my sologamy vows because I don’t regret my decision for a single moment. I have learned that if you believe in yourself then others will, too. And I have realised that if love starts with you, there really is no limit to it; it is a glorious energy that just keeps marching on!
READER, I MARRIED ME is now available on Amazon as an ebook, paperback or audiobook.