Monday, July 20, 2009

In My Life I Love You More

Boyfriend comes from a huge, huge family. After 4.5 years of dating I am still meeting new cousins at every big family gathering that is held. His Dad is the oldest of 5 children and there are 13 cousins, as well as another 6-7 boyfriends and girlfriends of cousins, and about 6 children of cousins. On his Mom's side there are at least 11 cousins and stepcousins, who knows how many boyfriends/girlfriends/spouses, and like another 6 children of cousins. They are also really close to their extended families on both sides as well....great aunts, second cousins, all that.

I come from a really small family. I had 3 uncles, two who have passed away, and none of them were ever married. Nae and I were the only grandchildren on either side. We didn't have any cousins and we didn't have a lot of contact with our uncles growing up. It would've been nice to have cousins, and I think that's why I think of all the kids in our travel group as my cousins, but I don't really understand the bond that exists between "real" cousins. Anyway, when I first started dating Boyfriend and I had to go to the first couple of family gatherings I was really overwhelmed. Both sides are so loud and happy and friendly and there were just so many names to remember! I'm better now but for along time I would get anxious when I knew we were headed over to Nan and Pop's for a party because big crowds stress me out. Now I'm part of the group and am just as loud and chatty as any of them and feel some sympathy when a new boyfriend or girlfriend is first brought around, remembering how scary it all is!

This weekend was Nan and Pop's 60th wedding anniversary. We headed around to their place on Sunday night for a bbq and it was a really fun night. Once again, I met two new cousins and 3 new cousins' children and they were all really nice. There was good food, singing and dancing along to MJ's Thriller from one of Boyfriend's aunts, a beauty shop was set up by one of the little second cousins and ALL of the boy cousins, as well as her grandpa, great grandpa, great uncles, and great grandma got their hair done by her! Boyfriend's Mom got her hair AND makeup done. My hair was done up in the hottest side ponytail for the night and it was cute to sit and talk to this 9 year old about what was going on in her life. She and her sister were such loving little girls, once they had a quick chat with you they weren't shy about coming back to talk to you some more and they loved to give hugs.

At every big event, Pop likes to give a speech and this occassion was no different. He told about the history of how he and Nan had gotten together and gotten married and a little bit about their early married years. He talked about how much he loved everyone there and how proud he was of his family and about how he loved Nan so much. Their daughter was in the kitchen washing up and listening and was crying the whole time and said after the speech she wished she had someone like her Dad as a husband. Then Boyfriend's Mom and other aunt went to hug her and they started crying. Then Boyfriend's Dad got up, as the oldest child, and said a little speech about how glad all the kids were to have Nan and Pop as their parents and how they were grateful to them for always supporting the kids in everything they did. He got choked up about halfway through then just about everyone was crying with him! It was the sweetest thing. Then someone made a joke about how this was a happy occassion so what was with all the tears and everyone laughed and it went back to normal.

All in all it was a really great night. When we got home and were lying in bed, I said to Boyfriend that I hope someday we'll get a 60th anniversary party like that with all our family surrounding us and he made some joke and I was like, I was trying to be serious. So then he turns over and says to me that he wouldn't mind at all being with me for the next 60 years. I thought that was so sweet, but Boyfriend, being Boyfriend, then had to be cheeky and add that 61 years was probably his limit!

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