A Baby and a Wedding

Sep 22, 2023 by HL Bernabe, in Life Stuff

This week’s blog I was going to talk about developmental editing. Specifically, editing my own vs. editing someone else’s. I did a deep dive developmental edit for a novella over the weekend, and it was an interesting process. I find it strange that I can so easily spot where the issues are in other people’s work and offer suggestions to help the author make their story stronger; yet with my own, I spot the problems (mostly), but remain confused about how to fix them. There is a reason authors are told not to do their own editing. I can say from experience why. We are too close to our own work and don’t have the objectivity needed to strip it down.

But, after the stuff that has happened and is happening this week, I decided not to focus on that for this blog. Two things are making this week very special for me.

The first special thing requires a bit of backstory to explain why it is so important. My former roommate lived with me and my kiddo for over four years, which was nearly 20 percent of his lifetime. He’s young enough to be my kid and is a friend of my kiddo. He moved in after graduating from high school. Lucky him! I can’t imagine a better living situation for a kid just starting out—moving away from home and having complete autonomy, while having a mother figure around he could go to for advice. I started calling him my child from another mother. My kiddo and I consider him family. I absolutely adore his girlfriend, too. She’s another kid of mine from another mother. (I’m practically collecting them.)

Well, they are starting their own family, and now she’s had a baby! On Tuesday night, she gave birth to a little precious boy. He’s so itty bitty! His little fingers! Oh, my. Just so amazing. Holding him… I can’t even come up with words to explain how I feel. I’m just so excited. I’m an honorary Grandma!

The second special thing happened this morning. I officiated a wedding for a lovely couple. It was a small, informal affair with incredible scenery in the background--a 300 foot deep canyon with the Oregon Cascades on the horizon. The amazing scenery couldn't hold a candle to the beauty of witnessing two people so much in love pledging themselves to each other, though. And I got to play an important part in that, which was such an honor.

The bride works with my kiddo. I officiated for my mom and my stepdad a few years ago, and my kiddo told them about that. They were having trouble finding a good fit for a clergy person and so the next thing I knew, I agreed to officiate for them. We had a little over two weeks from the time they asked me to the date of the wedding, but despite the short time frame, we all made it work. Their vows were lovely, bringing tears to my eyes.

These two events are such big, life-changing events for the people they happened to. The thing that united them, that made them possible, is love. I recently read a quote about love that I think is true both for marriage and for having children:

Love is, above all, the gift of oneself. –Jean Anouilh

Considering parenthood practically obliterates the self, and the parent's new identity becomes that of Mom or Dad, I feel this keenly. And with marriage, giving oneself to the other, being there for them, listening to them, supporting them, helping them--it is a gift to be cherished.

I wish both families the best.