The Gift

Weddings 2011

Weddings 2011 (Photo credit: The Style PA)

She laid down for the night in her big, empty bed. She hugged her extra pillow close to her. She had made this a habit each night since he went away. Lying there in the darkness, tears ran down her cheeks as she relived her marriage, and wondered how  it could have  ended. She went back to the days when they had promised to love each other until death came for one. Stars shone in her eyes, and admiration came from his. Their reflections bouncing off of each other, told others this marriage was sound, secure, and never-ending. The wedding was beautiful. She wore a beautiful, white flowing gown, with pearls and crystals glistening from the veil and the gown. The church’s windows caused dancing of lights to travel from one guest to another, as she walked down the aisle. Her father, who rested his arm softly around hers, was so proud to be walking his eldest daughter down the path to greet her future. She thought at that moment, seeing him in his white shirt and black tux, that there was no more handsome man than he. She looked straight ahead, to the tower of strength, her protector, the man she wanted to commit the rest of her life to, and felt flutters in her heart, as her love for him came pounding through. They had met through a friend, at a graduation party of one of her cousins. They noticed each other immediately, and had made introductions, and had never been apart since. He was hard-working, he worked for his father in the lumber business. He was the second in command. They spent many afternoons on the weekends taking in picnics at the local park, getting to know each other, finding that they had much in common. He was a strong man of his faith, and it seemed nothing could stand in his way of following the Lord. He wanted a family, with two or three children. She loved children also. She watched over the toddlers during church services and felt a strong connection between them and her. She wanted a home in the city, and he wanted a home in the country. They came to a compatible decision, and decided to buy a home on the outskirts of town. He was going to remain at his father’s business, and she was going to be a stay-at-home wife, babysitting, until they had a family of their own. The wedding was started. Her father gave her to him, with blessings. She glanced back at her mother, and saw tears of joy, and they smiled at each other. The vows being said, the longing kiss had been given. The cake had been cut, and all gifts had been opened. They went on their honeymoon, to an island with small population. There they gave their love to each other, and committed themselves to each other for the rest of their lives. Back from their dream vacation, life carried on as if nothing had happened in those prior days. She found children to care for and he continued his work. They saved every penny, and within one year, they had enough to put down on their very first home. The first night of living in their new home, they made it truly theirs, pouring their love through out each room. They were made for each other, their lives fit like a perfect puzzle. There was only one thing left that they both desired, and this was children. Spring turned to fall and Thanksgiving brought them two new changes to their lives. At the Turkey dinner, after all were finished, the newlyweds stood up to make two announcements. The first one, the one they had dreamed about, was they were expecting! The family was so happy for them. Congratulations and hugs were given. Plans were being made for the new baby’s arrival. A crib built by grandpa, a crocheted blanket made by grandma. The second piece of news was held in until all the excitement of the baby was settled down. As they were all in the living room, sipping on left-over desserts and drinking coffee, the new husband stood up and took an envelope out of his shirt pocket. He handed it to his father to read. When the father read this news, he sat down in his chair, and his face grew pale. The questions started coming. What was happening, what was this all about. The father regained himself and announced that his son had been drafted, and would be leaving for military duty in thirty days. The room grew silent. No one wanted to speak. You could hear a pin dropping, it was so quiet. Soon the father made the first move. He spoke about how proud he was of his son, and soon the military would notice what a fine man his son was and he would make lieutenant in no time at all. Everyone in the room forced themselves to make happy comments about the new experiences he would be living. The night ended, and the newlyweds were in their bed, holding each other, and showing their feelings. Giving to each other like they had never given. Time passed and soon it was time for him to deport. They hugged, they cried, making promises to write every day, to call when ever they could. The entire family was their to send him off, and there were no dry eyes anywhere. Waves of goodbye’s and memories of soft lips touching his kept him going through out the months. He came home on a leave for a short time, but it went by too quickly and soon he was sent overseas for a mission. Life moved slowly for the expecting mother, but she tried keeping busy with getting the baby’s room all finished, buying baby clothes, and there was also two baby showers that were given for her. One night, she lay down in her bed and hugged the pillow next to her, remembering him with tears in her eyes, and waiting for his home arrival. She fell asleep and a few hours later was woken by pains. She was in labor! She called her doctor and then her parents. They came and picked her up and together, as family, they were introduced to the newest member of the family. A boy, a boy who looked just like his father. Each member took turns holding him and touching his fingers, and letting the new addition know that he was loved. The new mother was so happy and asked her father to try to get in touch with the new father to let him know of this new miracle in their lives. Grandpa was able to get straight through, and you could hear the hoops and hollers through the phone of his excitement. He was coming home. He had been saving his time for this and now he was going to go home on a small leave, to welcome his new son. He would be home in a couple of weeks. The excitement grew as new mommy awaited new daddy’s arrival. She had since come home and was rocking the baby after just giving him his morning bath. When she opened the door, there stood a military captain with papers in his hand. He offered them to her with his apologies. Her beloved husband, the new daddy that had never met his son, had been killed in action. She closed the door saying nothing to the officer and went and sat down in the rocker. She didn’t know how long she had been sitting there, but knew eventually, that she needed to call her parents. They immediately came over, and took their new grandson home with them to give her time to think and to make plans for his burial. Her life was a blur. The days never separated. She lay in her bed, hugging her  extra pillow, tears running down her cheeks, remembering him lying there next to her, how they had committed their love to each other and how now life has been changed without permission. The baby cried out and she got up and went to him. This was the biggest gift God had ever-blessed her with. A part of her husband will live on forever through his son. She picked the baby up and hugged him tight to her heart, telling him his daddy loved him so much and would be so proud of him.