My Son’s Memory is Alive

Peggy Green - Thee Grief Specialist

Written by Peggy Green Thee Grief Specialist

Last
weekend I attended a wedding for a young couple. The bride and groom were
absolutely stunning. We sat through a light rain in a beautiful fall setting
with aspen trees boasting gorgeous gold, yellow and orange leaves. The air was
crisp and anticipation in the air. As the couple said their vows, it was well
worth it to see them make it official. Because of Covid, their wedding plans
were delayed, and the big day had finally arrived.

The
reception included a buffet, open bar, and photo booth. The usual toasts were
given with high accolades for the bride and groom. I have known the bride since
she was born. Her parents are family friends. We have been through the hard
times and good times together. It is no surprise that the bride received
multiple toasts of graciousness, a loving heart and fun loving. The groom, whom
I have only met a handful of times, received similar comments of integrity,
honesty and love for friends and family.

The
party really started rocking when the dancing began. The dance floor became a
mosh-pit of people of all ages celebrating the marriage of their friend and
family. I just loved watching the wave of bodies sway, jump and bounce to some
familiar and many not so familiar songs. It is unusual for me not to be in the
middle of that mosh-pit, but a recent surgery kept me from doing so.

I
sat quietly at the table and observed great excitement in all the partygoers
faces. Smiles were rampant and bodies suggested nothing but happiness,
happiness in the moment to welcome the bride and groom to the wonderful institution
of marriage.

I
cherished the vibrancy of the young adults. 
My daughters were with me which made this even more of a celebration.
This was a special occasion for us to be together which is more difficult to do
as they move forward with their life journey’s. However, I could not help but
to stop and think about my son. He and the bride knew each other. They grew up together.
They were only 3 months difference in age. As I watched from my table, I
clearly pictured Connor dancing, twirling, and smiling. He should have been
there. He should have been celebrating with his childhood friend, his sisters and
myself. I paused and reflected on this. I miss him yet was able to enjoy the
wedding party and be present with my girls.

The
bride made her rounds to the guests, me included. She thanked me for coming and
that she really appreciated it. She then asked if I saw Connor. At first, I
thought she was talking about another boy named Connor. I told her no. She then
proceeded to tell me there was a picture of my son, Connor, on the memorial
table, along with the other relatives that passed away.

Wow!
I was taken aback. This was not something I would have ever thought of. My son
was included in their wedding and memorial. All the accolades of praise to the
bride and groom were affirmed in that simple gesture. I immediately rushed out
to the table to see his picture. Connor was smiling, happy and giving two
thumbs up. I wondered where the picture was taken and found out later it was at
a restaurant we frequented when my kids were young.

Another
young man’s picture was alongside my sons. I found out his name is Justin and
was a friend of the grooms. He died when they were in high school. I felt
Justin’s parents’ pain. I wish I could have met them, hugged them, and told
them I understood. I hope they too felt honored that their son was remembered.

I
am still reeling from this gesture of love and kindness from the bride and
groom. His memory is not forgotten. His memory lives on.  

Thank
you. Thank you. Thank you.