Sunday, April 03, 2016

Beginnings and Endings

I mentioned in my last post that I went to both a funeral and a wedding in the same week. Eight days before my sister's wedding, our uncle passed away, suddenly and unexpectedly, of a pulmonary embolism. My mother is one of six, and needless to say she, her siblings, and my grandparents were reeling. The only good thing about having a death in the family the same week of a wedding is that many people who were already coming to town were able to get there a few days earlier for the funeral, including me. I was so grateful for the chance to be with my family and mourn my uncle with them. One of the reasons I wanted to leave Texas and return to the east coast was so I could see my family more often, for celebrations but also for tragedies. It meant a lot to be there with them, and to know that my uncle didn't suffer. That said: damn. It's incredible and frightening to realize how fragile we are, and how quickly we can leave this world, without any warning or sign. 

After a few days on Long Island remembering and honoring my uncle, my family turned to the next event in an emotional week - my sister Susan's wedding. We were all glad to have something joyful to focus on, and honestly a celebration about love, family, and new beginnings couldn't have come at a better time.  

My sister Susan and her husband (!) Derek spent 15 months planning an impeccable wedding. It took place in Cape May, on the Jersey shore, a vacation town I'd never been to but immediately fell in love with. We stayed at the Southern Mansion (pictured above) a bed and breakfast that doubled as the site of the ceremony and reception. Cape May itself is picturesque, and my only regret is that we didn't have more time to explore. Luckily, the bridal party boarded a trolley before the ceremony and drove all over town, taking photos at some of the cutest spots. It was a fun way to see more than the just the Mansion, though honestly I would have been perfectly happy to stay there and never, ever leave. 

I was my sister's Matron of Honor and our youngest sister, Ally, was the Maid of Honor. We gave a joint speech during the reception that seemed to go over well. My favorite part was when I revealed that I had helped Susan edit her OK Cupid profile years ago, and so, in a way, *I* was the reason were all there that night. The other best part of the wedding was the $5 selfie stick I bought at Target the day before. While all of us have, at some point, rolled our eyes at and bemoaned the existence of the selfie stick, I am here to tell you that they are actually 100% awesome. We passed it around the reception, where everyone had a blast playing with it and got some great group photos. Highly recommended. 

Thanks, Susan and Derek, for an awesome weekend full of family, love, dancing, and selfies. Here's to a beautiful marriage!