Saturday, November 15, 2014

to have and to hold

Last month, we attended the wedding ceremony of my brother and his long-time partner.  It was joyous, affirming, and important in the lives of our family, collective.
But in our little Carter family, there was an ugly event, one that marred an otherwise wonderful weekend.  There was anger, fear, frustration, disbelief, and embarrassment.  And yet, during the ugliness, there was love, support, friendship, faith, and respect.  In time, there is forgiveness and healing.

Looking back on the weekend as a whole, and as we continue to forgive and heal, the word that keeps coming to my mind is that our time with our family was affirming.  Listening to the vows that were shared affirmed the very most important components of a relationship, including mutual respect, unwavering love, commitment, humor, and friendship.  Gazing around the circle of witnesses to the marriage affirmed the feelings of gratitude for the many ways in which each of us, individually and as couples, have forged ourselves into family.  And the way in which the Carters were loved and cared for, even during the darkest of our days, affirmed the concept of Family in a way I'd never imagined. In our circle, I saw loss coupled with joy; struggle coupled with perseverance; commitment, devotion, and unconditional love:  it was all present, each of us bearing witness to it all.  And to each other.

To Love.

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