This summer, my niece Mckyla married her love, Jordan, in an outside wedding surrounded by a few guests. It was splendid. She was beautiful in a sweetly simple yet elegant wedding gown, and he was handsome in a suit and tie. It was a classic wedding where friends and family celebrated what will undoubtedly be the start of many happy years together for this young couple.
As always, these events find me nostalgic because we have missing family members. Though it has been years since we lost them, their memories weighed heavy on my heart that day. I find myself even more nostalgic of late because yesterday was our brother Darens’ bday. If my memory serves me right, he was born in 1962, so he would be on the cusp of his 60th birthday this year. I have written about Daren plenty. It is the same message that I have shared again and again, but I feel it is so important to say over and over; love the people around you and love them hard. There is truth in the statement “here today, gone tomorrow”; we lived it so many years ago. As I watched my brother Randy laughing with family at the wedding, I could not help but think of Daren, “He should be here, beside him, and beside us today,” but he wasn’t and will never be.
Love your people hard.
And my parents, both of whom have been gone for several years. I couldn’t help but think of all they have missed: grandchildren and great-grandchildren, holidays, and a list of events that would fill an entire page alone. It is enough to say that we ache for their presence. Again, as I watched Mckyla’s grandparents Marlo and Deb, proudly watch their beautiful granddaughter marry the man of her dreams, I could not help but think of my parents. My mother, comfortable in her skin, would’ve visited with everyone; my dad would’ve been to the periphery quietly talking and laughing with those most comfortable to him. We have witnessed so much these past two years and the stories of families disintegrating into chaos over politics, vaccinations, and mainstream dogma sadden me further. I am not free of guilt; I envisioned my thoughts as “right” and others as “wrong.” It takes me only a minute to remember that things can change so quickly in our lives, and overnight, a family can be decimated by tragedy. Life can be challenging with some harsh lessons that I feel we all so often ignore. The one lesson we have learned in our own family is that we are to love each other unconditionally because tomorrow is no guarantee.
Again, love your people hard!
Back to Mckyla & Jordan…— August 15, 2021
May you have many amazing years together and if I can give you only one piece of advice it is this: Love each other hard, every day because tomorrow is no guarantee.
Power Ranger Moves
The mother of the bride and our sister Dawn let loose with some exciting new dance moves that are sure to win her a spot on Dancing with the Stars, move over Amanda Kloots.
And dad, Owen had a sweet and tender moment with only daughter Mckyla as they danced their father&daughter dance. Even the hardest of hearts couldn’t help but be swept up at the moment as Owen gave her hand to Jordan to have and to hold from this day forward.
Love Your People Hard