Saturday Night Social: Remember Me

Illustration for article titled Saturday Night Social: Remember Me
Photo: Omar TORRES (AFP via Getty Images)

We made it past Halloween! It’s time for my favorite of the yearend holidays: Día de los Muertos. It’s a time to remember those who have left this world and also come to terms that you too will one day leave this world.

It’s a holiday celebrated on Nov. 1 and 2 that spans all the way back to the indigenous people of Mexico. I love this holiday because it is a celebration of life, and isn’t somber at all. Americans seem to be incredibly scared of death, but it’s a great unifier. There’s no reason to be scared by death; that’s what I love about this holiday.

Celebrating the lives of people we love and admire and miss doesn’t have to be relegated to the one to seven days immediately after their passing. We can remember them forever with marigolds and oranges and their photos and their favorite things decorating the ofrendas.

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If the idea of remembering the people who came before you doesn’t worm its way into your bones, at least appreciate this song from Coco, which was correctly awarded the Academy Award.

Who are you remembering this weekend? Who are you celebrating?

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DISCUSSION

I’m so happy we have SNS this week because I wanted to thank all the SNS contributors who helped encourage me to get married in a hurry. I guess it was four weeks ago that I posted saying that my boyfriend of 10 years and I were thinking of finally getting married while my father, who is declining rapidly from late stage pancreatic cancer, can still be there and enjoy the wedding. I wondered if I was crazy for trying to do it, but people assured me it was a great idea. And there were a couple times when I felt overwhelmed and almost lost my nerve, but the words of encouragement from you, internet strangers, actually did help me power through it.

We got married last Saturday, and it was perfect. We booked a big oceanfront Airbnb home in Massachusetts, just an hour or so from where my parents live, which we were so lucky was available with under two weeks notice. We invited close family—aunts, uncles, and first cousins—as the rules of this Airbnb said no more than 25 people. It was almost all my family; from the groom’s side, only his mother was able to come on such short notice. We promised his family we’d do another party out where more of them are based at a later date, but given the situation with my father, it was really perfect at this occasion to have him surrounded by people who love him. I was surprised at how much of my family was able to make it on such short notice, but I think they all showed up for him as much as for me.

Anyway, it was a whirlwind, but we made it happen in under two weeks. I got my dress and accessories from BHLDN, rush shipping, the gown from the “Last-minute bride” section (in stock, easy to alter). The dress arrived on Monday, I took it to the tailor on Tuesday, and picked it up on Friday—the day before the wedding. Awesome. I decided to spring for a wedding photographer, because with all the family together with my dad I really wanted good photos of the occasion, and I was lucky that someone in the area was available last minute. My mom, my aunt, and a close family friend made the hors d’ouvres, dinner, and cake. Another aunt organized the decorations. Others helped with other meals over the weekend, as most guests were there from Friday evening to Sunday midday. It was really wonderful how the family rallied to pull this off. And the venue—oh, the venue!was even more ideal than I’d expected. The beautiful sunny fall weather on our wedding day was particularly fortuitous, but we had a big flat lawn where we set up chairs for the ceremony, with the ocean as the backdrop. Picture perfect. The house had a refinished barn where we set up tables and had the dinner and cake. Attached to the barn was a TV room with couches where my dad could lie down and the rest of us could gather in there with him (we were there for both hors d’ouvres and after dinner). The day after, it was drizzly, but we had a brunch in the house with all the guests, to see people off before they left.

My dad was so happy, the rest of the family was so happy, and my husband(!) and I were really happy, too. Everyone was saying how amazing and wonderful the weekend was. It was really special. So thanks to everyone for the encouragement. I hope SNS and all the comments stay around, because they matter. Here’s a photo from the Airbnb bedroom, overlooking the lawn where we had the ceremony (and my dress is there, too!).