a toast

6 Sep

I’d like to think it might have been less hokey/more dazzlingly witty if I had more time to prepare but, considering it made the bride, groom, and bride’s mother cry, I think it worked.  So honored to have had the chance to speak on behalf of one of my best friends in celebration on her marriage…

*   *   *   *   *

Caitlin is a hard woman to keep up with, and I don’t just mean on the race track <allow for courtesy laugh in response to awful pun–thanks y’s & co!>.  I was just thinking about this undisputable fact as I chatted with her mother earlier today.  I was lamenting the Diffleys’ impending move away from our home state of Virginia.  Then I remembered that the last several times I saw Caitlin were in North Carolina, South Carolina, California, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and, of course, in her new home in Colorado, even while she’s currently working halfway around the world…

Which brings me to two of the many characteristics I adore about Caitlin:

  1. her ability to continually find and create her own adventures; and
  2. her talent and capacity for including her loved ones in said adventures, consistently enriching their lives.

Yes, Caitlin is a hard woman to keep up with, and I am simply so happy for my friend: she has found the man who can not only keep up, but contribute his own explorations, foster her pursuits, and enable them both to find greater fulfillment in embarking on them all together, if not always in person then certainly in spirit.

When Caitlin and Chris first got engaged, I tried my best to begin to get to know him over email.  In response to one of my many questions (Chris, you were such a good sport!):

It’s not easy [to pick a favorite memory] because in the last six months we have had so many.  If I had to pick one today, I would say the first time we went swing dancing together.  I love to see her laugh and smile.

After only a little over a year together, Caitlin packed up for a year of service in Korea.  Chris wrote:

I am so thrilled for her…I miss her move than I thought I could miss anybody.  We will see each other every three months, and [we] are using this separation to improve communication and strengthen our marriage.

I am simply in awe of the two of you.  In the last year you have created such a beautiful life, very much together even while living mostly on separate continents.  It’s been a thrill to hear how you’ve managed to swing dance and run marathons around the world together…complemented by the great value you also place on faith, family, and home.  The warmth and peace I’ve glimpsed of your life here is reminiscent of that I’ve always felt at Caitlin’s home in Virginia, staying up all hours lounging on her kitchen floor with the yayas, brownie batter in hand.

Yours is the type of marriage to which others aspire: true partners who encourage one another relentlessly in his/her separate and joint pursuits, who build a home together, both strong and welcoming.

In the words of William Penn:

Nothing can be more entire and without reserve, nothing more zealous, affectionate and sincere, nothing more contented than such a couple, nor greater temporal felicity than to be one of them.

Congratulations to Caitlin and Chris!  I love you both!

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