March 9th, 2021 / posted by paularath

My father, Bobby Rath, and I start down the aisle at Punahou Chapel.        Photo Courtesy George Smith

From small kid time, girls dream of the dress we will wear on our wedding day. When the time is near, shopping is a treasured (though sometimes fraught) task. What style of bride do we want to be? Romantic? Sophisticated? Minimalist? We worry and waver and finally choose the outfit that we will wear down the aisle. But how much do we think about what our future husband might like?

When I married Jerry Mayfield on September 3, 1988, it was a second marriage for both of us. We were grownups. I eschewed the wedding gown altogether and decided on a chic silk suit. Wanting to be a little sassy, I chose a hat with a tulle veil and fresh flowers that coordinated with my bouquet. I was quite happy with the look…until I saw Jerry’s first glance. His was not a happy face; it was rather obvious to me that he did not like my wedding outfit.

What to do? Well, at that point, nothing. I simply had to saunter on down the aisle with my Daddy, pretending I had never seen that look on Jerry’s face.

There’s no need to go into the deep psychological scars that might have affected Jerry’s take on my choice. (I’m kidding.) And the experience certainly didn’t leave me scarred. It was just a moment in time, and it passed quickly by.

At least Jerry loved my Princess Kaiulani hula muumuu!

At our wedding reception at Halekulani, I changed into a holoku, which had been planned in advance of course. I was to dance an appropriate wedding hula, “Pua Hone,” as a surprise for Jerry. (He didn’t know I danced hula.) I walked up to the front of the room with a little trepidation regarding my appearance, but the grin on Jerry’s face was quite different from the one in the chapel. So I simply sighed with relief and danced on.

As we left the reception, we were showered with rose petals, thanks to my sister Roberta’s thoughtfulness.

Much later, Jerry told me that the color and style of my wedding suit, sort of 40s-ish, was just slightly reminiscent of a suit his mother wore. And his relationship with his mother was, well, a bit complicated.

I’ve never worn the suit again, but it still hangs in my closet. Like it or not, it’s a reminder of the day when Jerry and I became husband and wife and began the incredible journey that has been our life together.

Paula Rath


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March 10th, 2021 at 4:08 am

Love You. Beautiful blog by a beautiful

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