Despite her struggles after getting her ass whooped and stomped the f out, Juanita Bynum still managed to see the positive of reaching her 50th birthday:
ESSENCE.COM: At the sacred ceremony, which was an integral part of your birthday celebration, you wore your wedding dress. Why?That’s a nice story. But, if we are going by tradition, then when she got married in that white dress, she hadn’t ever fu…oh, never mind. God doesn’t like ugly. Some more below. via Essence
BYNUM: One of the greatest moments of my life was the day that I married. That day was supposed to be the defining moment of my life when I would show the world that I had stepped into my womanhood. It was always the original intention of my dress and I refused to let it not be because it was made for me. So I wore it because I felt like someone had robbed me of that right. I waited so many years to walk in it and I wanted to give the dress the honor for which it had been made. My father told me to always face your fears head-on, and since this was the dress that is connected to the incident for which the whole world remembered me, I said that if I’m going to cross over I have to go back and stand in the same place.ESSENCE.COM: Was it difficult to wear the dress again knowing the pain and heartache that was once associated with it?
BYNUM: Not at all. When I opened it up my first vision wasn’t: “This is the dress I married the wrong person in.” I touched the dress and said, “I almost forgot how beautiful this dress is.” When I stood in that dress for the second time I looked at myself in amazement because I knew the real moment that I waited for all my life had come again for me to define who I was. So that’s when God gave me my new name, Juanita Bynum, II, because I have redefined myself and been reborn. It was like being given an opportunity to be me again—the new evolved me. I rewrote my ten commandments and I declared that my past would not be a part of any mockery, shame or error, and it would only be a part of my future for me to pass on lessons about my experiences. I will never allow anyone to mishandle and misrepresent my name because it’s one of the most valuable, God-given gifts.