Sunday, September 09, 2007

My dad got married yesterday. It was the last of the Triumvirate of Dreaded Events this summer (sister Laura moving and the family house being sold were the others, if you're keeping score.) But this morning, as I reflect on yesterday, I feel much much better about everything.

Not that it was easy, seeing my dad marry someone who was not Mom. It was really really hard, maybe the most difficult thing to get through in this whole crappy year. I think the minister was a little worried about us. But now I see that Dad is happy and contented and settled and with someone who loves him and will take really really good care of him. And for me, it's not so much about Mom anymore, which was the toughest adjustment to make in my head. I know Dad loves and misses her. I also know that he wants to look forward in his life, not backward. (My sisters and I are all about looking backward and pining for Mom, so it was tough for us to understand how Dad could move on.)

We went back to their new house after the ceremony, and I had two pleasant surprises. One was that, contrary to what I thought with my shaky grasp of geography, they are only two minutes from Valley Forge Park, one of our favorite hangouts. So he is not now on the other side of the earth where I would never see him, as I had formerly thought.

The other pleasant surprise was Jean's family, whom I had never met before. My father has three daughters and Jean has three sons. Yes, we can make up a nutty middle-aged Brady Bunch. (As one of them said yesterday, "I smell a crazy Christmas card!!!"). Two of the sons were married. The sons and their wives were absolutely wonderful - warm, funny, kind, welcoming. My sisters couldn't make it back to the house afterwards, so I was feeling a little outnumbered beforehand. I don't know what I expected, but I have been known to wildly exaggerate anticipation in a bad way in my brain. They took a potentially awkward social situation and made it delightful. After all, they lost their father not so long ago, so it must have been weird for them too.

So, even though it was not a day I would particularly wish to repeat, I'm in a better place than I was before (remember, it's all about me!!!). I feel like my father's not out of reach - maybe he'd even want to poke around Port Kennedy train station with us! And I feel like, in a weird unexpected way, I gained a whole new nice family.

I said to Matthew this morning, "I feel like everything might actually turn out okay..." And he said, "Ya think?!"

Mazel tov, Dad and Jean.

3 Comments:

Blogger taxmanmike said...

wow

5:35 PM  
Blogger Liz K. said...

Wait. I live 2 minutes from Valley Forge, and grew up a different 2 minutes from Valley Forge! Where is the Port Kennedy train station??? And where did you dad move?

10:31 PM  
Anonymous mighty momogus said...

tmm - yeah!

liz - do you know where the old Kennedy-Supplee Restaurant is? The Port Kennedy station is right next to that. I believe it is near the Welcome Center but is right next to the river. My dad moved to Chesterbrook (I think on Route 252). I thought Chesterbrook was in Chester, but is not. That side of the Schuylkill is still a mystery to me.

5:42 PM  

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