Things that make me smile.
Today we remembered an amazing man. My husband's uncle that passed away a year ago. We spent the morning at the cemetery sharing our favorite memories of him. I couldn't help but get a little introspective. Here was a man, a husband, father, brother, uncle, and friend that impacted so many. His funeral was packed to the rim, with so many people showing their outpouring of love. Today there were maybe a dozen people surrounding his grave; all with tear filled eyes, and heavy hearts. Here, a year later, there were a dozen people who's live were forever impacted by this man. Sure, his funeral was evidence of the many more people that loved him, were affected by him, but here stood 12 who would never be the same. His wife and two daughters obviously still missing his presence. His three sisters who were aching to have their brother back, yet rejoicing in the fact that he was united with their parents. His five neices and nephews all laughing as they remembered him scolding them, or praising them. My two little nephews who are the sweetest most compassionate 7 & 9 year old's I know. Stood there with tears streaming down their faces at different times during morning. I would watch their faces and my own eyes would fill up with tears. And now in our family we have a whole new generation of "babies". While they will never have the joy of knowing this man, his legacy will be forever ingrained in their lives by their parents and all that he would have taught them.
He was many things to many people. To me, he was love. He was the first person I met from my husband's family. My husband's father passed away when he was only 16 and his Uncle took over many of the fatherly responsibilities for both my husband and his two sisters. When my husband (then boyfriend) first told me about his uncle he went on and on about his crazy Hispanic temper, his sense of humor, but mainly focused on the important role he had in my husband's life. From the very beginning I knew that he was the closest thing I would have to a father in law. As soon as he met me he gave me the biggest hug. It was one of those hugs that just makes you feel loved. We spent some time talking and getting to know each other but then we had to get going. I landed in Houston, but the rest of my husband's family was in San Antonio (about a 3 hour drive). His uncle insisted that on my departure day we drive up early so that we could spend some time together. And so we did, we got back to Houston about 5 days later and his uncle actually changed my flight so that I would have more time there to spend with him. He insisted that I got to spend 5 days with the rest of the family, surely I would spend the afternoon with him.
That was close to 5 years ago now. We didn't see him very often but when we did he always took the time to make me feel special. He would seek me out at family gatherings. Ask me how I was doing and listen carefully to my answers. It was apparent to me how much he loved and cared about my husband. He treated him as a son, and me as a daughter.
Standing there today in the cemetery it's amazing that while he has been gone from this earth for a year, his legacy and place in this family will not ever be forgotten. And this makes me smile.
Adios Mis Amigos,