About 14 years ago when hubby and I were just starting to date, Auntie and Uncle came to town to visit. They were considering moving up to Idaho. I really wanted them to meet this guy I was interested in because Auntie has always been an excellent judge of character. I recall being at our favorite Mexican restaurant in town - we call it the La Tapitia (joke that there are two the's). We were waiting outside for our table and Auntie looked at my sweetheart and frankly asked, "Let me see your shoes." I was kind of taken aback and not sure that was exactly what she meant to say. She repeated herself and he showed his shoes. She looked at them and replied, "Very nice, clean, tidy - a keeper". Of course, as the evening went on she really got to know him and when the night was over declared secretly to me, "You need to marry this one". I agreed but we were still in the early stages of dating so time would tell.
Fast forward a couple of years and we are getting married. I live far from most of my family but I really wanted Auntie, Uncle, and their family to all come up to the wedding. I had all the cousins as either brides maids or flower girls. It was awesome to we surrounded by such positive family. Auntie and Uncle funded a lot of the travel and clothing expenses so that everything would be just perfect. As I said previously, she was always a big supporter and cheerleader of mine. It was a beautiful event and one I will always remember because she, uncle, my family, as well as a few other key folks could be there on our special day celebrating with us.
I was so happy she and uncle moved up to Idaho several years back, along with their youngest daughter and her family. It has been so wonderful having family close by. Special family that loves you no matter what your race, religion, or creed and takes you with your flaws and gifts. They have seen me at my best and at my worst and no matter what they always keep loving me. I know that is because their dear parents taught them true Christ-like love and they carry the spirit of my Aunt who is truly the most positive person I have ever encountered. Real genuine positive energy. Not the Polyanna syndrome, I call, when someone can take something negative and turn it into a positive (i.e. "Oh you broke your leg - well, at least you did not break both legs" - gee that really helps). No, those folks annoy me. I mean, even when things are horrible she would acknowledge the bad thing and say, "It's okay to be sad, it will work out. In the mean time, you have my prayers" and insert her special hug. By the way, she and I have the same body morph so it was sort of surreal to hug her - I know what it is like to hug me but I still have a ways to go before I get that specialness added to my hugs. We were the same size, height, weight, everything. A gift from Grandma Zamora.
Auntie passed away just a few days before our 12th anniversary. Once again, all the family gathered together. However, as wonderful as it was to be with all the family, our hearts were heavy knowing she was not physically there. I could certainly feel her happy spirit in attendance, even the spirit my my grandma but it's just not the same not having them physically there.
All the services were beautiful. The day was beautiful. I know Auntie would have especially approved of her pink casket with bright red roses over the top. For Christmas last year she asked Uncle to buy her a bright red coat. My mom has taken this all really hard. She was closer to this sister more than any other. She knows she will see her again someday, as do all of us, it's just we will miss her deeply. I cannot explain how powerful her spirit was. Such a positive flow of energy that it is hard to not notice its absence. Does this make sense?
So, Hubby and I opted to keep our anniversary celebration a quiet one. Auntie's services were all completed the day before our anniversary but we were so tired both physically and emotionally from everything we took the day off. Actually, I was quite sick and slept about 18 of the 24 hours in the day - again keeping things in perspective. But it was still a lovely day being together and enjoying our children. The evening before we did not feel like cooking so we went out as a family for sushi. We toasted Auntie with our waters and said one final farewell to this wonderful woman. Then it was off for a walk to throw coins in the fountain and walk past the building where we had our reception. We especially felt safe having super hero escorts.
When Hubby and I chatted last night about our simple celebration we were happy. We actually felt it was one of the best anniversary celebrations ever. We remember being at Auntie and Uncle's 50th wedding anniversary. In fact, they were just a few weeks short of making it to 60 years of marriage. I hope the same for us. If we continue as we are, I see no reason why not. This year, we thanked God for our beautiful family and the many happy years we have shared together. Simple times together. For I feel it is the every day efforts that are most important and make up the majority of our lives, not moving between special days and big life changing events.
Happy 12th Anniversary to my Dearest Love!!!
|Kids dressed and ready for Auntie's services. I had to make Lil Sister a new dress with red edging in honor of Auntie.|
|Had to have freshly polished shoes for her, too.|
|Family sushi dinner to celebrate anniversary.|
|Super cool traditional Japanese dessert for kids - orange with whipped cream and strawberries. (No, T did not eat whipped cream.)|
|Fully restored classic VW bug parked outside - kids were awed and impressed there were no seat bets. Speedometer did not go past 80 MPH.|
|Wishes at the fountain - first wish I ever made here was that I would be the girl Hubby wanted to marry. Wishes (and prayers) really do come true!|
|Tall building to the right was where we had our wedding reception and spent our wedding night.|
|Best man at the wedding interviewing Auntie and Uncle for our wedding video - my heart still hurts too much to re-watch this yet.|
|We insisted Auntie and Uncle be in our official photos - true honored guests.|