Friday, October 24, 2014

somebody's missing

The period of planning a wedding and marriage is such wonderful time of your life. It's full of excitement and anticipation. Your wedding day is spent surrounded by the ones you love most in the entire world as you vow to one another your forever.

The thought of this just makes my heart burst with love and gratitude.

It also fills a part of me with pain and grief.

You see, somebody really important will be missing on our wedding day, and that person is my brother.

circa 2006// personal photo 

When my brother was killed in a plane crash in 2007, my world was forever changed. My entire childhood is filled with memories of growing up with an older brother and in an instant, that person and relationship in my life disappeared.

One of the things I struggled with the most in the early days of my grief (and to this day) was the fact that he wouldn't be there for the big milestones in my life. My wedding day. The birth of my children. I wouldn't get to see him grow up and become a husband and a father. Those memories of my future were taken away from me and my family.

So, while our wedding day will certainly be one of the best days of our lives, a part of me and a part of my family will feel a huge absence.

My brother was a goof, the life of the party, and everyone loved him. To honour him on our wedding day, we have several things we're going to do.

A personal presence 
I will be getting a charm for my bouquet to have him with me throughout the day. This one is for me and nobody else.

Etsy shop ElegantChicJewel

A Special Shot
My brother's favourite drink for some ridiculous reason was Jagermeister. When he died our town was sold out of Jagermeister for weeks. It makes me so happy to know that BM Click and her sister actually bought the last bottle! Much to the dismay of our family, we bring out the shot glasses at special family events and toast to my brother with a shot of the nasty black substance. We all have our post Jager yucky face and smile in his memory. At our wedding the only shots we will be offering is of Jagermeister. I'd like to do up a little sign at the bar explaining the drinks we're offering, including the reason behind the Jager only shot option.

having a shot of Jager in Germany! // personal photo 

A Special Toast
As I said, at special family events (Christmas, birthdays, our annual party for my brother, etc.) we usually do a special Jager toast for my brother. What more of a special family event than our wedding? Later in the evening we will be doing a special Jager toast in his honour, and for everyone that is with us in spirit on our wedding day.

larger than life // personal photo 

Mr. Narwhal and I are really excited about these special touches for my brother. A fun fact about Mr. Narwhal: while he and I never officially met until 2012, when he first moved to Muskoka over ten years ago my brother was one of the first people he ever met. He also attended our family's first memorial party in my brother's honour. We never actually met that night, even though there are photos of him on one side of the room, and me on the other with a mixture of the people he came to the party with!

We think that we've found fun and meaningful ways to incorporate my brothers presence into our special day. While he may not be there in person, we're finding ways to fill his spirit into the day.

Do you have somebody missing at your wedding? Are you finding special ways to incorporate them?

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