last night our family celebrated my brother’s and sister’s birthdays around a giant round table at a local chinese restaurant we discovered just five minutes from my parents place.
14 of us, laughing and crying, having flashbacks of important and silly times in our shared lives. when i think about it, there had to have been a ton of forgiveness over the years for all of us to be able to sit at the same table last night.
my sister married a man whom my parents didn’t like. there were many tears and fights prior to the marriage. they were hoping she would marry the boy she had been dating in high school, the one who was studying to be a lawyer in college, the one who had ‘potential’. but sometimes life doesn’t turn out the way we want it to.
the dreams we have for our children, may not match their dreams.
they didn’t want to give her a wedding, they refused to say his name or look at his face. they insisted she deserved better and that her life would be ruined.
over the years, they’ve found forgiveness, and my sister and her husband are now welcomed and loved, but it took years of healing, compassion and understanding. my parents had to let go of what they wanted, and accept what was truly out of their control.
my parents did the best they could. at times it was hurtful, and mean. but we’ve all made mistakes, and if we can’t learn from those mistakes and find forgiveness, life can be unbearable.
and so we laughed, and remembered the good stuff – and there were so many. last night i could see my parents loving their children and grandchildren just the way they are, not the way they wanted them to be. instead of judging, that someone didn’t go to college, or that things could have been better, there was simple joy in the room.
as i tucked them in bed last night, and reflected on the fun night, i could feel the love. last night they slept like babies…in fact, they’re still sleeping – when you live from the heart, and stop judging from the head, you find so much to be grateful for, and you find that beautiful feeling of peace and harmony.