Tuesday, May 18, 2010

It's a Wedding! and a Marriage!

So this weekend is the one our last child, our "baby Jacob", gets married. He has selected a wonderful girl. JL and Jess have already brought us much joy. The wedding will be SO much fun--the weddings of Zachary and Amanda 5 years ago and Rachel and Aron 18 months ago will forever highlight my memories. As good friends, great people, wonderful family gather for the big send-off into married life, we will truly and deeply rejoice.

We had our own little private send-off last week. As the wedding of each child approached, the 5 original Youngs (Charlie, me, the 3 kids) got together for a last lunch at Skyline Chili, one of our favorites haunts when they were little. This time was not much different than the other two--loads of laughter, favorite stories retold. Only this time there was a twist. Zack and Rachel gave their little brother advice on marriage, the REAL DEAL that follows the big hype of the wedding day. That was very interesting for a mother to hear. :-) We all know that the marriage, the living out of the vows on ordinary days, is the really significant thing. It is life's biggest decision and most significant challenge, after the decision to follow Jesus.

As I listened and watched, I realized again that our house is going to be empty now of all the kids calling it home. There won't be anymore tribes of young people hanging out and making amazing noise. We've had the last sleepover. I'll be able to decorate every single room of the house the way I want. And there will be plenty of room in the garage and closets. Those thoughts didn't make me celebrate. I have absolutely LOVED having children and I have loved everything (well, almost everything) that comes with them. The knowledge that this era of my life ends on Saturday morning when JL wakes up for the last time in "his very own bed in his very own room" is bittersweet.

It makes me very happy that 36 years ago on June 15 I married a man to love forever. The kids are gone, but he is still with me, still faithful, still kind, still loving, still my best friend, still "the one." Fortunately over these years, the MARRIAGE has been the big deal, Our wedding was so much fun and a day I still enjoy reliving, but nothing compared to the joy we have right now. The house will be much less crowded with people now, but still overflowing with love.

Charlie and I are children of the 70's. The music of the Beatles blared out from the 8 track tapes and radio in his 1970 Camaro over many miles. Though we loved the music, we never picked up the lifestyle of the day, and came to our wedding with each other being "the one and only." But John Lennon captured the way I felt about Charlie then, and still do today. Jacob and Jessica--may it ever be true for you. Zachary and Amanda, Rachel and Aron--may the years make this your song.

There are places I'll remember
All my life, though some have changed
Some forever, not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places had their moments
With lovers and friends, I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life, I've loved them all
But of all these friends and lovers
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new
Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
In my life, I'll love you more

Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
In my life, I'll love you more