11 July 2012


     On July 14th, I will be thrilled to watch my family history open a new chapter with the addition of a son-in-law. I've thought of bringing my laptop back to the sacristy and enter Frederick's name into my family tree program as he and Kelly signed their marriage record. But I promised to behave myself, so I will leave the computer at home.
     I've noticed that friends and family members  have asked me two related questions about my new son-in-law: "Do you like him?" and "Does he make your daughter happy?" I have also noticed that the latter question is usually asked by women with married daughters, so I deem it the most important, and yes, he makes her very happy.
     I know I am lucky because I can say "yes" to both questions! How can I not like Frederick--he is a history buff! I know that sooner or later the genealogy bug will infect him. Even if it doesn't, that's okay. I enjoy his company and conversation, and that makes me a very lucky mother-in-law. I am thrilled that my family tree will include him.
     My extended family of Irish and Polish cousins will celebrate with us that day. In the past decade, the Large clan has lost the last members of the generation of ten children born to May Magee and William Large. My generation of cousins has become the eldest generation. We've had too many funerals the past couple of decades, so I hope the wedding will be a chance for us to reconnect with joy and celebration. We have asked my Burdalski aunts and uncle to carry the communion gifts at the Mass, and I will be excited to see a generation walking up the aisle to the altar together.
     On second thought, perhaps I won't quite behave myself. I will cry tears of joy, laugh loud and often, and dance (even if my hips jiggle more than they swivel).
     As my husband's family will be saying at the wedding, "L'Chaim!" I love that toast most of all:
     To Life!