Our wedding day was spectacular (as you can see from these pictures). It was a truly perfect day.
The best part of being married to my best friend is knowing that no matter what is thrown at us, that we have each other, that we're on this journey together. He supports me, believes in my dreams, urges me to keep going if I want to give up. And I hope I do the same for him.
It is also the day that our dear friends welcomed their beautiful twin girls into the world. Today they turn six. For them, this is a day of celebration for the lives they've welcomed into their family.
But this day is not just a day of joy. It is also a day that someone I know (not closely) lost her very young son in a drowning incident. Though I don't know her well, my heart still aches for her when I think of what September 23rd means in her life. Heartache instead of joy, pain instead of happiness.
And now it is also the day that marks the beginning of a fight. The fight my cousin's dear husband is waging against cancer. They are a gorgeous, young couple, full of life and love. They have only been married for two years. He competed in Lotoja (a local insanely difficult bike race) and found out he had cancer just a few days later. The lump in his neck was not a brachial cleft cyst like I had when I was 14 (that they thought he had as well). It is stage four Alk-negative anaplastic large cell lymphoma that has already spread throughout his neck, hip and possibly his bones. Today was his first chemo treatment. September 23rd for my cousin and her husband will be the day that marked the fight for his life -- the fight for their life together here on earth.
September 23rd is just another day on a calendar for many of you, I'm sure. But it means so many more things to me. A day of joy and remembrance, of pain, of endurance, of loss, and life, and those that have passed on and that which is still to come.
Most other days are just that to me, dates on a calendar. But to someone, somewhere it means much more than that. I guess I need to remember that more often if a stranger seems rude, or jubilant, sad or full of smiles.
So to my cousin and her husband: we love you. We know you can beat this. You are strong, and young, and full of faith and hope, and God will bless you, I know it.
To the mom who is mourning the loss of her baby three years ago (though I doubt she reads this blog): though I barely know you, our prayers are with you. I can't imagine your pain or how you stay so kind and sweet to everyone around you, from what I've seen the few times I've been near you since then. God will bless you as well, I know it.
And to my husband: Thank you. For being you. For loving me. For giving me the last eight years, and for all the years yet to come. I love you.