I thought I had been through the “first” of everything without my son on this Earth beside us. I was wrong. This weekend, my niece got married. It was a beautiful ceremony and great seeing all the family. All of my siblings were represented. The five of us still living were all there, and the three who have passed were represented by their widows!! I was prepared to see my niece get married and see my family. What I wasn’t prepared for was the “forever in our hearts” table!
I had not thought about it even though this is common at weddings and holds pictures of loved ones of the bride and groom who have passed. Represented of my family lost included the photo of my parents, my three brothers, and… my son! I was not prepared for that table!! Seeing it opened flood gates I could not control and it took me quite a few minutes. The more my family tried to console me, the more I wanted to cry. That’s ok!! I am sure a few of them were emotional, too! Father of the bride decided those photos should be in our family photo!! We each held the photo of the one we lost: my sisters-in-law held the photo of the one they were married to; father of the bride held the photo of our parents; I held the photo of my son! Such a great idea and tribute!
My niece and my son were only a few months apart in age and grew up together. Memories of the two of them were imminent. This table brought a lot more emotions than memories!! One, my son wasn’t there in person to help his cousin celebrate. Two, I won’t get to witness his wedding. It is in these moments I am reminded that my son lives in the hearts and memories of a lot of people! I truly believe that may have been the biggest factor in my flood of tears. I forgot that my niece missed him too on her special day. If I had thought about it ahead of time, I might have braced myself. Unfortunately, it had not crossed my mind until that table caught my eye!
I am so happy for my niece and her new husband. They are starting a beautiful life together and my brother is so blessed! I, too, am blessed and I know it. It just surprises me sometimes when I get caught off guard with something like this, even though I have acknowledged it a thousand times over these past two years!
I have to remind myself there are many things I won’t experience, but there are many things I have! I never want to forget that!! I know my son was watching over my niece today and was there in spirit, as well as my parents and brothers! I am so grateful that my brother and sister-in-law and my niece included him on this very special day!! It meant more to me than they will ever know!!
I also need to remind myself there are times in the future, near and far, when I think I have control when I do not! Times like this when I think I have convinced myself I am strong and have it all together, but I don’t. Times when the smallest of events can trigger a flood! These are the times when I am so grateful I have such a loving family who hugged me, cried with me, and understood I am not always strong and still need them! This will happen for years to come, I have no doubt!
Until I meet up with him again, I will try and brace myself. I will try and stay strong, but acknowledge strength doesn’t mean you don’t cry. I will never forget and know those that loved him, aside from me, won’t forget him either! I also know I won’t always be prepared when something pops up, and it is ok!! As always, I cry because he is gone, but I smile because he was here!!
#gonebutnotforgotten #nottheonlyonewhomissescody #familyisforever #mynieceisamrs #thedashinthemiddle