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Jessica Lynn Williams

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I don't think I've ever felt more beautiful as when my mom and best friend laced up the corset of this dress on my wedding day. It wasn't just the dress that made the day beautiful, or the flowers, or the old 1920's ballroom we had our first dance together. It's that I got to marry my best friend in the whole wide world. I know how that sounds—cliche as fuck—but when you get to marry your best friend, someone you've traded secrets, laughs, and tears with since you were 16, cliché as fuck is the only way to describe how happy this day makes you. 

And now, four years later, at my in-laws house, I found my dress tucked away in the closet of the spare bedroom of their house. I knew it was somewhere around here, but we moved to the west coast right after we had gotten married, and the dress didn't make the cut. As a minimalist and someone who prides herself in being pragmatic, I was bothered by holding onto the dress.

So, I bit the bullet. I did some research and found an incredible charity called Wish Upon a Wedding—it's a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization granting weddings and vow renewals for couples facing serious illness or a life-altering circumstance. After learning about this cause, I couldn't imagine holding onto this dress any longer. 

I won't lie, I did shed a tear or two when I gently folded up that dress placed it in that USPS flat rate box, but you know what? I know that by allowing myself to feel uncomfortable, and by giving up something I've no use for anyways, I'm giving someone else a gift that can help them find a silver lining in a difficult situation.

If you're holding onto something you know you'll never use for the sake of a memory, I challenge you to consider who you might be holding out on. As my good friends at The Minimalists say, what's sentimental to us, might be useful for someone else.

It was hard to get rid of the dress—don't get me wrong—but when you get to marry your best friend, you realize everything else can go. 


If you're looking for a meaningful place to donate your wedding dress, check out this article featured on Babble: 5 Meaningful Places to Donate Your Wedding Dress