O'BRIEN: Tennessee bride's gown gets wedding season off to an i - Quincy Herald-Whig | Illinois & Missouri News, Sports

O'BRIEN: Tennessee bride's gown gets wedding season off to an interesting start

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Tis the season for something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.

Wedding season is here.

Summer is a busy time for weddings, a time when young lovers come together and tell the world that they're going to stay together "for better or for worse" all of the days of their lives. It's also a time where people can make silly mistakes -- other than picking the wrong person to marry.

One newlywed in Tennessee took the whole "something new" tradition to an entirely different level at her big day last month. During her wedding ceremony in Ripley, Tenn., Shona Carter-Brooks and her husband, Jonathan, had a unique way to incorporate their one-month old daughter, Aubrey, into their ceremony. Carter-Brooks decided to walk down the aisle with Aubrey attached to the train of her gown.

A photo Carter-Brooks posted to Facebook showed the infant lying on top of the dress. As you'd expect, the photo wound up going viral. It caused a buzz with some people saying that authorities should look into the couple for child abuse.

The headlines associated with the story were amusing, too.

"Bride straps baby to wedding gown," wrote the Examiner.com. One blogger referred to Carter-Brooks as an "idiot bride" on their post about the story. A Jacksonville, Fla., TV station referred to the baby as "an odd bridal accessory" in its report.

The grainy photo shot with a cellphone by someone at the ceremony tells you a lot.

The first thing you look at is the little baby at the end of the gown. The baby appears to have her eyes closed. Then you look at an older, bespeckled gentleman in the last row to the right. His look is classic. His body language screams, "What in the heck is going on here? Why is she dragging her baby down the aisle?"

Naturally, Carter-Brooks took to Facebook to defend her actions.

"Our 1 month old was awake and well secured on my train," she wrote. "Most important while yall got ya feelings in us we had our hearts in Christ which covers all!! So keep ya mouths running for it was just that Exclusive and Epic enough we made top blog way from small town Ripley, TN and the social media doing what they do, TALK!!!"

If the couple really wanted to incorporate the baby in the ceremony, there were plenty of other ways. One of them could have held the child during the ceremony. They could have rolled her up the aisle in a stroller with them and have her sit in the stroller during the ceremony. Maybe a family member could have helped her be the ring bearer by helping her hand the couple their wedding rings.

Anything would have been better than making it appear like you were dragging the little darling down the aisle.

It doesn't appear the infant was harmed. If Carter-Brooks' goal was to make her wedding memorable, mission accomplished. It appears her ceremony went off without a hitch and had people talking all over the country and even made headlines all over the world.

No harm, no foul.

There was no word on what Carter-Brooks used for something old, something borrowed and something blue.

-- dobrien@whig.com/221-3370

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