On my 30th birthday I woke up and cried. Not because I was turning 30, but because I was entering a decade that my father would have no part of. He died when I was 22 and so he had seen a small part of my twenties. Entering my thirties meant starting a chapter that would be devoid of any semblance of his imprint.
As I was searching my basement this weekend for suitcases, I found myself in a nostalgia detour. My inner procrastinator happily combed through boxes and Ziploc baggies brimming with the past, and as each vessel surfaced with archives of long-lost treasures (treasures maybe a strong word for old pictures, “Welcome Home Baby” cards, baby teeth and hair, positive pregnancy tests from my first and second born–yes, I kept them–and umbilical cord stumps, but one person’s treasure is another’s trash) another hour was almost surely lost. But then I came across something else quite unexpected.
I didn’t do a July 4th post… I tried, I couldn’t do it. I kept putting stuff together and bursting into tears, nothing felt right and I just couldn’t get into the spirit. July 4th we always celebrated my grandmothers birthday–her birthday was July 3rd. She started the tradition years ago with a lobster bake and my aunt has continued the tradition–a promise she made my grandmother before she passed away in 2008.
So this last Wednesday would have been my grandmothers birthday, and I can’t call her that… I never called her that. I called her Nanny. She was the best Nanny in the world. She was beautiful, she was effusive and she lived adventurously. She was proud of her family and she made you feel loved yet she also could give a kick in the ass when it was needed.
Yesterday was Pride and it was in no way ordinary. Just days ago on June 26, 2013, The Supreme Court found DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) unconstitutional; and as we say in our house, love is love. My family and I have been privileged to witness many loving relationships of all types and make-ups–cultures, genders, nationalities–all of them perfect in their imperfections, beautiful in their real-ness as they perform an everyday ballet…
How strange it is that I never felt grandiose enough to make a judgement as to whether those couples had the human right to be together or not. Doesn’t that just sound absurd?