marriage

A Celebration

Last month, in celebration of my husband’s 51st birthday, we enjoyed a four day escape to our state’s gorgeous coast. The Fort Bragg~Mendocino area is about a four hour drive from our home, and holds a special place in our collective heart. We spent many random long weekends and holidays in this splendid place prior to our wedding nearly seven years ago. We really haven’t had a chance to visit as much as we used to in the last few years-illness, our home, responsibilities, expenses and other needs have stood in the way of wants. Such is life. But that is what made this time away all the more special.

My husband, overlooking the Pacific

My husband, overlooking the Pacific

The ocean view at Glass Beach~Fort Bragg

The ocean view at Glass Beach~Fort Bragg

The bounty of Glass Beach, Fort Bragg. A famous and favorite spot for gorgeous, authentic sea glass.

The bounty of Glass Beach, Fort Bragg. A famous and favorite spot for gorgeous, authentic sea glass.

The cliffs of Mendocino

The cliffs of Mendocino

Mendocino sunset

Mendocino sunset

Stretch of coast between Fort Bragg and Mendocino

Stretch of coast between Fort Bragg and Mendocino

Mackerricher State Park, north of Fort Bragg

Mackerricher State Park, north of Fort Bragg

Path to the coast~MacKerricher State Park

Path to the coast~MacKerricher State Park

MacKerricher State Park

MacKerricher State Park

Ocean waves, MacKerricher State Park

Ocean waves, MacKerricher State Park

MacKerricher State Park

MacKerricher State Park

My husband on his birthday~MacKerricher State Park

My husband on his birthday~MacKerricher State Park

Sunset view from our room~Fort Bragg

Sunset view from our room~Fort Bragg

My husband's birthday sunset~Fort Bragg

My husband’s birthday sunset~Fort Bragg

This amazing time together was the perfect way to celebrate my husband’s next trip around the sun~a good and loving man who deserves everything he dreams of. This time with him also returned me to a fundamental truth~travel, this earth, beauty and love, all of it reminds me that I am meant to be here. Alive, happy and aware.

Have a gorgeous week.

Moments

Where there is love, there is life.

~Mahatma Gandhi

bride

On Sunday, my dear friend took her vows.

As expected, she was beautiful. He was beautiful. It was beautiful. It was filled with the kind of moments, too numerous to count, when I literally could not find my breath. Love and devotion have a way of creating that kind of magic.

The tears actually started many hours before. I felt weepy as I did my hair and makeup, listening to ABBA and Olivia Newton John; just a small sampling of what we loved as teenagers, and what we still love to this day. My mind went back to movie nights and beach vacations. Six years ago she witnessed my walk down the aisle, and on this evening I would witness hers.

The tears came in earnest when the ceremony began, with the sight of her brother lovingly leading her mom down the aisle. I caught a glimpse of glistening eyes and a quivering lip. The telltale signs of love.

wedding flowers

As the night progressed, I had my broken moments. The inadequacies of illness sometimes win, no matter how much I know better and no matter how hard I fight. I watched her from across the room, full of energy, talking to friends from work and others who came into her life after me. I heard the conversations swirl around the table and from elsewhere~about jobs and vacations, remodeling and children, college tuitions and 401ks~and there I was, exceptionally boring, struggling to find things to talk about. My husband looked at me, sensing my pain, and gently kissed me.

“She loves you just as you are,” he said, “that hasn’t changed.”

“I know,” I nodded and whispered back, joyful tears threatening again.

As the first dance as a married couple came and went, and the customary parent-child dances were complete, I grew tired and it was time to say goodbye. She hugged me hard as if she would never let me go. Emily Dickinson once said “forever is composed of nows.” These are the kind of moments that are the very precious fabric of life; there can never be enough of them. I want to sit still in quiet and peace and burn them into my memory so I can hold them forever.

After this very beautiful night, my heart and mind are overflowing.

Congratulations, Calli and Derrick.

I am blessed beyond measure by your love and friendship. 

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