Fiftieth Wedding Anniversaries are something to celebrate. Today, we live in a world that disrespects marriage; people get married for the wrong reasons, divorce rates are high, and children are constantly born out of wedlock. All the more reason to celebrate two people who have loved each other for better or for worse, for rich or for poor, in sickness and in health. True love like that is a miracle. But the real miracle, is that my family made it to this point when two months ago, we didn’t even think it was possible.
My grandpa was in and out of the hospital three times. My grandma could barely walk or talk. Today, they are both healthy and happy. Grandma looks and sounds five years younger. She can walk without the aid of a cane, let alone a walker. She eats custard. And she’s planning their next trip to Rome or Hawaii or Disney or…
My eyes sting a little with tears whenever I think about where my family could be right now instead of celebrating my grandparents’ fiftieth wedding anniversary. We are so blessed. And this is how I know there is a God. And this is how I know that Miracles happen. He has blessed them for their never-ending love and devotion to each other by ending their pain and hardships. Seeing their loving devotion to each other sets the best example for me as I move onto the stage of my life when I am looking for the person that I want to spend the rest of my life with. I couldn’t ask for better role models.
One of the special things about this celebration was that my grandparents asked me to sing at their vow-renewal Mass. After Mass, my grandma told me that the only time she had tears in her eyes was when I was singing. That means so much to me; that I could touch her that deeply and make her day that special by singing for her. At the reception, my male cousin and I sang the duet “The Prayer” (which was last week’s music video of the week for those of you who remember; I encourage the rest of you guys to look up this incredibly beautiful duet), which brought tears to many people’s eyes. Our aunt said, “Your Nana is smiling down from Heaven right now, very proud of both of you. She always hoped that one of her grandbabies would be blessed with her musical talent, but here we are, and three of you have it.” Our Nana was an opera singer in her youth, and the third person our aunt is referring to is my younger brother, a budding musician. I’ve always wanted to be like Nana for as long as I can remember, and hearing people relate me to her is one of the highest compliments I can receive.
This post is mostly a retelling of what happened to me this weekend, but I think that’s very important. We need to appreciate the Miracles of life, whether they be great or small. Yesterday was a Miracle. As my dad said in his toast, “Nobody is guaranteed anything, let alone a fiftieth wedding anniversary.” I guess you could translate all of this to “Live life to the fullest” and “Praise God every day for what He gives you,” and yeah, it is a little bit of both. But it is mostly “Recognize how truly, truly blessed you are.” Blessed. Each and every one of us is blessed.
And never, ever doubt the power of true love.