Kathleen and Jon were married about five years ago. It was my honor and privilege to officiate. We had an immediate connection through their names and my husband’s and mine. “My” Jon was included in the wedding festivities and we were invited to the rehearsal dinner at ZTejas Grill, hosted by Kathleen’s father Richard Moore.
Fast forward a few years. Jon and Kathleen have two children. Serena is 4 1/2 by now and Jacob is almost 2. Beautiful children; happily ever after and all that. Then in June I was contacted through this very blog. When Jon “found” me I was traveling in North Carolina, but that was old news. By the time he sent the message, I was in Phoenix for a church conference. Jon wrote:
I just read on your blog here that you are/were out of town, are you still out of the area? The reason I ask is that Kathleen’s father has passed away, and we would like to have you officiate the memorial. From what I understand, he liked you when you talked to him at our rehearsal dinner; you made a strong impact on him, and we know that he would have liked to have you for this.
A sweet reconnection with a family I had met as a group during one special event. They lived close enough for visits with Grandpa–Pflugerville, Austin, Cedar Park, San Marcos, and Leander. A little over a year ago Dick and his third wife Marsha moved back to Texas and spent much more time with the kids and four young grandkids.
Kathleen, Lori, and Jason remembered wild rides with Dad on a golf cart; the Bradley Kit car he worked to assemble (and never quite finished); and his invention of the touch tone phone. Too bad he never applied for a patent before someone else followed through and manufactured it! The family enjoyed entertaining dinners together every month and brought in the extended family on holidays. The greatest memory after Dad died was the laughter and hilarity of these times together.
I’m glad Dick and Marsha, who had been his childhood sweetheart in San Marcos, moved back to Texas. He had been absent for most of 25 years in Albuquerque or Florida after he and their mother divorced. When family members separate, the children–in this case, teenagers–feel a real void. In the midst of pain they all did the best they knew how.
How do YOU keep love alive? It’s so easy to lose touch with friends and family members whom we don’t see on a regular basis. It’s not so easy to break ties when we would much rather stay connected. Perhaps Dick and his children needed that time apart to go on with their independent lives without undue drama. I’ll never know the whole story. The ending of Dick’s story is that he was indeed back in touch. This Henry Van Dyke poem was included in the memorial service:
For Katrina’s Sun-Dial
Too slow for those who wait,
Too swift for those who fear,
Too long for those who grieve,
Too short for those who rejoice;
But for those who love,
Time is Eternity.
–Henry, Van Dyke