Saturday was filled with wedding vows, muted pink bridesmaid dresses, and a church full of family and friends. The niece I used to babysit was getting married to her sweetheart. All the children who used to run around and throw tantrums were all graduated. I hugged the relatives that I missed last year because of not having family gatherings.
This time I noticed all the wrinkles around those familiar faces cousins, aunts, and uncles. How did all those years pass so quickly? Some of my family is a little more frail than the last time we met. Maybe I was in denial, still wishing we were younger than we really are because I don’t want to lose any of them.
As I age, I realize that having the living person there is better than a memory. Sitting at one of the round tables, I took part in another moment in time. A new relationship was written down and committed to out loud. I wondered how many of the younger children running around would remember the white flowers, round tables, or shiny wood floors.
I also realized I need to be more diligent with my pen so that moments like this are remembered, and not left a memory that can falter as we age. I took note of the warm wood floors, white draped tables, strings of lights that lead up to the skylight that stretched the neck. It was so high up that it could have touched the moon.
When the dinner speeches began, I smiled when my brother-in-law started to cry. He trusted his daughter to another man today. Despite his over six foot height, he’s a softy inside especially when it comes to family. When the groom’s father spoke we all laughed at his “smell my feet” story. Apparently, hopefully he doesn’t read this, but the groom used to flap his arms like a chicken when his dad came home from work and lay down and tell his dad to smell his feet. Yes, my niece’s new husband used to giggle, yes giggle.
After meeting my nieces new in laws, I feel better about her choice. The grooms parents are the nicest people I’ve ever met and they’re not even from Minnesota. Most of all I think her new husband will fill her life with laughter, and carry some of the same sweetness of his parents.
I looked over at the man I married and wondered how 12 years had past since we said our vows. Our wedding was filled with music performances, a drumming group, and hanboks. My aunt said ours was one of the most memorable because we didn’t have a traditional wedding but my niece did well, and she’s a better planner than I was. I told my cousins children that just graduated to takes notes about today for their own future weddings.
The dinner service continued before the music started playing. A best man who was deployed showed up on a video to wish them well. Any changes to lost venues, or caterers turned out to be a good thing because the setting was classy and the food was delicious. The cupcakes were sweet, and the late night snacks during the dance hit the spot.
When it came to the dance, well – I don’t know what happens to my husband but he dances to his own beat. I still don’t know what he’s trying to do and I laughed the whole time. Laughed even harder because he wasn’t the only one offbeat. There was one young man breaking all the beats, loudly on the floor. If you’re going to be offbeat, do it well.
So, get our your pens this week. Write down the memories you want to keep alive on the page. Write down all those offbeat moments, and remember to step away from your typewriter to have a living moment with the people alive right now. Stop spending all your time with dead poets and writers. Celebrate the ones still here. If you have a chance to recognize, award, or spend time with the ones in our social media – connect to them.
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