What a weekend. Of laughter. Of love. Of tears. Of hugs. Of happy reunions and bittersweet departures. In a weekend of total celebration, I reunited with my extended family. Saw old friends. Saw new family. The weekend was notable for the people who were there and the people who weren’t.
We celebrated my graduation, my sister and my mother. I caught up with my family, finally under happy circumstances. There was no tragic loss to mourn.
I’ve never had a weekend of so much concentrated happiness. Never celebrated three tremendous events in a two day period. There was so much life in my house. So much excitement for the people who were able to make it. People who have the busiest of lives. People who, somehow were able to put their lives on hold for this weekend.
All of the celebrations looked forward to the future. We celebrated my graduation from college. We celebrated my sister and her future husband. We celebrated my Mom and new Stepdad. There is so much to celebrate. So much to look forward to.
Some absences were noted. The ones who have left us. Who we mourned only a few months ago. We felt those losses. Those empty spaces.
But I think it’s about celebrating all that we had with them. And remembering that they don’t want us to stay sad. I think that, that is the most important thing to remember. To remember, as Serious Black put it, “The ones that love us never truly leave us.” To remember that they are there. They are celebrating with us.
I mourn their loss as much as I know they are watching over me. I cherish their memories. I try to take every opportunity to tell my family that I love them. I try to take in every moment of gatherings like this, knowing how infrequently they occur.
As I grow up, I realize how few and far between these opportunities, for seeing each other becomes. That is why we must relish the opportunities for reunion. And always remember that there is much to celebrate.