wedding weekend: the pinning

I hardly know where to start. 

The weekend was a tizz of preparations and clean-up punctuated by life-changing events and celebrations: our son’s college graduation and pinning, the private marriage officiation, the big wedding reception. Laced throughout were countless precious moments filled to the brim with…

New faces.
Warm hugs and cold toes.
Authenticity and vulnerability.
Friends and family.
Powerful, heartfelt words.
Lasagna and champagne.
Pride and gratitude.

Like I said it’d be: it was a lot to take in. The whole experience was so overwhelming and jarring that it left me feeling gutted. It’s Wednesday and I’m only now beginning to settle back into my body. 

So, again: where to start?

Well, Friday night, our son’s fiancé’s mother and grandmother came for supper and during the meal I ate a stinkbug. While deep in conversation with the grandmother, I felt something fall on my lap and automatically assumed I’d dropped a bit of tortilla chip. Without thinking, I popped the crunchy nugget into my mouth and chomped down — and then froze. Something was terribly wrong. Was it a bad bean? I spit into my napkin and a quick peek at the contents revealed the truth. Without a word, I left the table to rinse all the bits of masticated stinkbug out of my mouth. Only when I returned, did I tell what had happened, and I apologized to the grandmother for so rudely cutting off our conversation. Moral of the story: look before eating!

That evening my older daughter flew in at midnight and my son picked her up, and the next morning, we interrupted our frenzied wedding prep to drive into town to his pinning ceremony. Which was kinda weird since it felt like just yesterday — both to him and to us — that we’d attended his white coat ceremony.

For the past two years — most of it during Covid — he’s studied and memorized and tested and worked. My husband and I have been impressed at both his continued hard work and unflagging interest in the material. 

I never quite trust that my kids are going to do what they say they will — not because I don’t believe they can, but because situations change and people evolve. I’m more about the process, and less focused on the end result, so when we do reach the end — a graduation! — I can’t quite help but feel a little bit surprised.

And happy, too, of course. 

Afterward, there were lots of hugs and a whole lotta tears.

Our boy done did do good.

P.S. While his fiancé was sticking the pin on his shirt, the speaker reading his profile announced that our son had accepted such-and-such a job at a hospital. My husband and I were like, HUH? Is this his way of telling us he got a job? But no, turns out he hasn’t accepted any position just yet — who knows where that bit of misleading info came from — and his plans are still the same: to work with my husband for several months while studying for his boards. After that, then a nursing job…somewhere.

This same time, years previous: the coronavirus diaries: week forty-two, rock on, Mama!, ludicrous mashed potatoes, 2016 book list, old-fashioned sour cream cake doughnuts, the quotidian (12.22.14), toasty oatmeal muffins.


  • Becky R.

    Oh, YUCK, I hate stink bugs! I once drank a roach from a glass of water in the middle of the night. I don’t know which is worse.
    Congratulations to your son! It takes a lot of commitment to finish nursing school during a pandemic. I am a nurse, so I know of what I speak. It is not a profession that will make him money rich, but it is a profession that will make him experience rich, and it is very gratifying to work as a nurse if you are in it to help people. I admire his tenacity. And congratulations to you and your husband for the support that made this possible. You all done good!

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