I can't believe it's been 15 years since we got married. I was looking through my wedding proofs this week reminiscing and I had a couple of thoughts.
1. Wow, we were young. Fresh out of college and already getting married - crazy! 2. What the heck is that poof on the back of my head? Ah yes, the mid 1990's in all it's glory. 3. These pictures scream "My Big Fat Italian Wedding" to me. Ha!
Which brings me to this little picture below. It's my husband and I in the center surrounded by some of his cousins. Who in the world has this many first cousins? There were 56 at last count.
I am not Italian, but I married into this huge, very traditional, first generation Italian-American family. And so I've learned a few things...
1. Spaghetti sauce is called "gravy" and it can only be homemade from the tomatos you picked at the farm and canned. I've got the gravy down, but I refuse to pick the tomatos.
2. You will attend the wedding, baby shower, baptism, communion and 50th Wedding Anniversary party of every single one of those cousins pictured above. We've been to 48 weddings since we've been married.
3. Family comes before all else. Period.
4. Mother-in-laws are very involved in their sons' lives. Especially so, when the son is the eldest and the "golden child." An opinion on finances, parenting and even furniture placement is freely given. I've learned to smile quietly and nod (alot).
5. If you ever need something, there are two dozen families who would give you the shirts off their backs to help. There is always someone there for you.
6. Holidays are an event. A big group, 16 main entrees and a buffet table of desserts is required. Everything is celebrated BIG.
And so often times I find myself dancing a tarantella, cannoli in hand, surrounded by 200 of my closest in-laws. And I smile. This sure isn't how I thought my life would turn out. And yet it's better than I dreamed.
Thank you Mr. Damiano (because I know sometimes you read here), for making me a part of this crazy family. Ti amo bello mio.