Last weekend we celebrated our 20th Anniversary with a vow renewal and gathering afterward…you can see more about that here, but the thing I loved the most was being surrounded by our family and friends. Now. There are some of you reading this that might be sad because you missed it (and it WAS great), BUT this is NOT a slight or rant on you missing it. It was our fortune to be married in June. Who knew that 20 years later June would be the month of finishing school, graduations and the general crazy busy that ends school and begins summer? Who? Not my 24-year-old bride self, that’s for sure. Anyhoo…….as much as we would have LOVED to have each and every one of our family and friends present, it’s just not a reality. Life and all that. That said……
The people who were supposed to be there were. It was a neat gathering. ALL of our kids (and with our 16 yo’s recent crisis of faith–that says a lot). Many of Hubby’s AA friends came, and that is a diverse group of pretty cool people. Truly. We had friends come from church, and for the few friends we have there….that was a nice feeling. Hubby’s parents were there. Probably one of the very few times my father in law made it to church. A continued grace in healing of a strained relationship. My grandparents were there, right up front with us and my grandmother kept her claustrophobia at bay so that they could be on the front lines where they have always been. Fraternity brothers, to which I can never say enough good about this group of guys. Friends from our old city who drove 4 hours for a date weekend; this was an extra special because of the time we were able to spend with them the night before catching up.
My fear of getting up in front of the ENTIRE. 9 A.M. MASS. to renew our vows was real. When Hubs started getting emotional prior to Mass, he almost brought me over the edge (so I had to threaten him with bodily harm and eggplant…he doesn’t like eggplant). During the ceremony, I remembered our priest’s advice and just kept my eyes on Hubs, and the priest. It worked. Thankfully I followed those instructions because toward the end I snuck a peek at the parishioners and holy cow! The looks of love and sweet smiles on their faces. NOW I know why our church opts for this manner of vow renewal. Talk about a witness. I would never have made it had I looked out. Also, the fact that our only response was “I do” rather than repeat the entire wedding vows was a HUGE help. Death by publicly speaking heart-felt vows and all.
The graces were real. The love was real. The friends are real. The icing on the cake.
Now hopefully life will get real and get our friends here throughout the summer for some visitin’!!!