The whole Goodman clan attended a wedding together last night. We all got gussified and took over a whole row at the ceremony and then a whole table at the reception. It was probably one of the last events we will ever do as a complete family and it was terribly bittersweet. The coolest thing about it was that the venue was a special place for Josh and I, it was the locale of our very first date almost 23 years ago. Crazy to think that my 18 year old self had not one inkling of what was to come. Two decades and six kids later I sat there feeling all the normal feels you get at a wedding, but mingled in was just a tad bit of sadness too. About halfway through the toasts my little Zion decided he wanted to sit in my lap and his older brother was running around snapping photos and it was all I could do not to run out of the place yelling for a do-over.
This is it.
A few weeks ago we were all carousing in a friend's pool and my kids all started teasing me about not being able to swim. Its not true, but they all insisted that since they had never seen me swim, I therefore could not. They never stopped to think that I had always been the one hovering warily beside one of them to assure that nobody drowned. There was no allowance for swimming laps during the times we spent in the water or diving into the deep end while one of them was always needing to use the bathroom or have a snack or need another application of sunscreen. Aside from that it got me thinking of what other things they have never "seen" me do that they are taking for granted. Do they know my heart breaks when they hurt? Or that my stomach is in knots while they waited for that job offer or acceptance letter or each time they delivered a speech or spelled a word or buzzed in at the Battle of the Books? When I walked away from our discussion and cried my eyeballs out because they thought I just didn't "get" it? My silent prayers, my sleepless nights and early mornings, all confirming my unseen devotion and love for each one of my babies.
And this is it.
All the love, sacrifices, mistakes, lessons learned, culminating into this new era of living for each one of us. Let us enter into it with a renewed grace for the things we don't see, silently and invisibly working on our behalf. Trust, believe, hope, that its all moving us together toward the glorious finish.