From the outside looking in at a wedding, I get a good handle on family dynamics. I get to hear the stories, witness the special moments, those relationships that help us be who we are, and of course see the effects when a loved one isn’t there to share in the day.
For my friends Melissa and Brian (aka Murph), their wedding day was a celebration of two great families and the bittersweet moments of Murph’s mom not being able to watch her son marry his best friend. But his mom was there. Murph placed a bouquet of flowers on a front row seat next to his grandparents to help commemorate her memory.
There were tears and moving stories about the loss. But there was also many laughs, smiles and full on craziness. Have you ever heard of dramatic dance fighting? I have now. Murph’s family does this crazy show where it’s guys against girls in an all-out Meatloaf lip syncing battle. There was also a tour of the Boise State University’s stadium and a few quick pickup games on the world famous blue turf. And for the guys the next morning, there was a crazy competitive basketball game in the BSU practice gym followed by a lunch where fun stories and kind words were shared among the guys. Those moments and traditions highlight the amazing outpouring of love and appreciation for what they did have — two families joined together and the memories that helped shape Murph into the man he is and will continue to shape his new family.
I come from a very fragmented family where not very many of us our close. Yet it’s always an awesome part of my job to witness the closeness and moments these new combined families share at weddings. It’s even better to be brought into those moments and share them with these families.
Realize that life is short. And the people who you share those days with should be cherished and celebrated. Even if they’re no longer with us, they are still a major part of us.