Wednesday, March 23


I won't be posting much, if at all, for the next few days.

My nephew is getting married. And we are all, in our immediate family, traveling from Dallas to Panama City, Florida (my home town) to celebrate the event.

This is one of those times when a parent is so proud and happy that our five grown children are taking three days off from work (and since they are young adults, it is a sacrifice and risk in some respects) to come together with their larger family to rejoice and enjoy their expanded family, I can't express my joy and satisfaction.

The fact is, my panhandle Florida family is quite different from our own. My kids are the results of a psuedo-sophisticate urban upbringing. My sister's (including her son, the groom) are what some would call "rednecks," but they have a sweetness and genuineness, apace with their own eruditon and education, that my own kids envy and honor. About once a year over the past 25, they have spent time with their cousins, and have grown to love and treasure them beyond what most would expect. My kids are crazy about their genteel Southern lady grandmother (my mother) and aunts (my sisters), while in some way they take their mother for granted.

So I just spent the past thirty minutes talking to my investment-banker oldest daughter (aged 25) about what she should pack for the trip and events. Earlier in the evening, my youngest son (22-year-old national AAU karate champion and now an oil-lease salesman) informed me that he would driving alone all the way to Panama City in time for the wedding because he couldn't bear not to be present at his much-loved cousin Justin's wedding. He's really glad, though, that he's not a "member of the wedding," and thus doesn't have to wear a Tux.

There are times in a family that bear witness to joy. My sisters and I have a relationship that I wouldn't trade for gold. I know that no matter what, they will support and rescue me if that's what I need. Thank God, I have a husband of 30 years (The Sage) from my teens, that is still the smartest, kindest, and most attractive man I have ever known. I don't know why he sticks with me, but I thank God that he does. I have screwed up with my five kids over and over, but now that they're grown they show every evidence that they're smarter and better than I ever could have hoped even if I did everything right. I am so blessed and so undeserving, I have a glimpse of grace that most people may not, because it makes me realize the nature of that grace -- an undeserved gift.

Anyway, I am so looking forward to the next few days. And I feel a gratitude for the opportunity keenly, because I know it is a gift I haven't earned.


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