My son is getting married on Saturday. Even though he is 29 and hasn’t lived at home in years, it feels like a really big change. I love his future wife and I think they are perfect for each other. My overwhelming emotions are not about that, or anything having to do with the present.
I worried so much about him when he was a little boy. It was not easy for him to be a kid. I don’t think I’ll ever stop worrying about him in a certain kind of way. I am so delighted that he has found love and has eagerly embraced the concept of marriage, even though he was seriously affected when his father and I split up. He has been a wonderful boyfriend and fiance and I know he will be a great husband. I am very grateful that we are close, that he and his bride live close by and that I get to see him frequently. I was certainly not a perfect mother so I’m really glad that he seems to like me.
Because of my divorce, a lot of memories have been lost or repressed. I’m sad about that and have realized that one of the things that intact families have is the ability to remind each other of those funny or poignant family moments. I didn’t realize that until I was on the other side (Divorce Class of 1998). Also because of the marital strife, there was a long period of time where no pictures were taken. However, after the original family structure ended, we became a happy little band of three.
It was important to me that my children have fun and go on vacations even if there was no dad around and we didn’t have a lot of money ( I remember spending one vacation on the phone with Capital One trying to get them to free up a hold on my credit card so the vacation could continue). We went to Chicago, Niagara Falls, London and Barbados between 1998 and 2006. Those memories are very vivid for me and they make me smile.
I feel lucky that my sons included me in their lives and still do. I never told my parents ANYTHING, so it always amazes me when they confide in me or ask for my help in solving problems. It’s really the best compliment ever.
When I was raising them, it was so hard to imagine the future or that they would ever be self-sufficient and autonomous. I now know being in daycare and therapy, going through his parents’ divorce, living through money troubles and my volatility and his father’s insensitivity and all kinds of other complications — that none of these obstacles could stop my boy from becoming a wonderful, loving, accomplished and competent man. I am so very grateful to whatever higher power made that happen.
I hope that my son’s wedding day is the most glorious day of his life, and that I don’t sob too loudly or otherwise embarrass him with my tremendous well of emotions. I didn’t think there was really anyone who could understand what this day means for me, but I found out that my younger son does. He was the only other witness.
It seems I really did raise two compassionate, caring men who respect and admire women, who value good manners and who can be silly and serious when each is appropriate. I don’t know how that happened, but it is THE crowning achievement of my life. There is nothing more I need to accomplish, except to thoroughly enjoy and kvell over what their futures bring my way.