She is inspiring women of all ages to never give up on their dreams and to take as many chances as possible.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on April 28, 2023. It has since been updated.
Getting married at an old age might not seem ideal for many. However, love has no age and people can decide to marry their soulmate at any stage of their lives. Janet Merryman found love at 80 and decided to get married to her 60-year-old fiancé. Moreover, she did not leave anything out when it came to having her dream wedding. A TikTok video of her trying out a wedding gown went viral recently. In the clip, she looks absolutely stunning as she twirls in a beautiful lace dress.
The video was posted on the platform by her granddaughter, Danielle Jefferson, who goes by @theonlydanij on TikTok. The text overlay reads, "My 80-year-old grandma is marrying her 60-year-old fiance." In the video, Merryman excitedly shows Jefferson her gown. Her granddaughter replies, "You look great. Turn around 360." It is a strapless white lace dress with a high slit and she looks like a million bucks in it.
The granddaughter then asks her to walk and show off the gown. The store staff then tells the grandma: "Close your eyes and put yourself in the venue, thinking of your future with your fiance. If you both have positive thoughts, then bells are here to celebrate with you." Merryman opens her eyes and rings the bell. Everyone around her starts cheering for her in the clip.
The video has gained more than 1 million views and people couldn't stop admiring Merryman for her incredible looks and courage. @user4846378477939 commented, "Grandma looking better at 80 than most of us in our 40s." @mirandaa_rightss wrote, "That’s amazing!! You can start over and have your dream guy any time. Beautiful." @mizpaofvhid expressed, "Your grandma looks like she is in her 40s stunning and getting married. Go grandma."
@migdalyolivier pointed out, "She looks terrific. I hope to see me like her when I get there." @arianearsenault86 commented, "This gives me hope with my 20 years younger than me boyfriend."
Talking about the wedding, Merryman told Good Morning America, "Did I ever think I would be getting married at 80? Absolutely not. I picked out three outfits and the first one I put on, I'm going like, 'This thing looks really good.'"
Jefferson said that the brides around them in the shop couldn't stop looking at her grandmother. "Honestly, it was heartwarming. I'm so happy for her. I love how happy she is. And she found love, especially at her age. I know she inspired so many women who are, you know much younger than her and have given up hope on finding love," said the granddaughter.
Merryman did not have an easy life so seeing her finally happy is heartwarming. She shared, "I met my late husband when I was 15. 16 years ago, he took his life. I was diagnosed with colon cancer and I had a battle with that. And I got a blot clot in my lung and I didn't think I'd be sitting here today. I had Danielle, I took Danielle in. Well, she left and gradually, I got lonelier and lonelier."
However, meeting her fiancé changed her life for the better. "We were neighbors for seven years. And I was a widow for those seven years. He was married and had three children," she explained. "After seven years, he became single. I started inviting him over for lunch and to just have somebody to eat lunch with and have company. And it just grew from there. We started spending more time together." Now, they are going to be married soon and spend the rest of their lives together.
Merryman hopes that her story inspires other older women to not give up on life. "If there are any 80-year-old women out there, take a chance, that's all I can say. That's what I'm doing," she said.