September 18, 2010
Sunday, September 5, 2010 wasn’t just another Labor Day weekend for the Tubalinals in Chicago. It was, after all, the wedding of our only daughter, Madelene Grace, the very first and a much awaited wedding event in our family.
I hope you can forgive us for this all-out publicity. A colored publicity spread and a featured bride in “This Week’s MegaScene” wouldn’t suffice. So, there was another full page photo story on page 16 and this, my column, occupying the entire page.
I admit; I went a bit overboard. But you know what? I would have devoted half the pages of this MegaScene issue if I had my way… No kidding.
God’s Wonderful Blessings
My marriage with Bart has been blessed with three wonderful children, Bart Xavier, Paul Xander, and Madelene Grace. They came in that order and in very short intervals. At age 29, I was done with my last pregnancy and at sixty, I finally got to see the first wedding in my family.
It was a long wait I didn’t expect to make when I was raising three teens. In fact, I thought I’d be raising grandkids much earlier, when I wasn’t quite prepared. I used to remind my firstborn, Bart X about making sure he finished college and got a good-paying job before settling down. He was the one I was most apprehensive about rushing or getting rushed into marriage because of his ‘preoccupation’ with girls. Well, he did finish college, got a great job and a very promising career, bought his own condo but there was no talk of marriage yet.
Then, I thought it would be my second son, Paul who would be first to tie the knot. He is more serious in his relationship, a one-woman type of guy. I’ve known just two girlfriends he had had from junior high till a few years after college. But things didn’t work out with his first or with the second. And then, like his older brother, he had stopped dating for a while. He, too, has a great job and a condo which he co-owns with his sister.
Madelene Grace, our youngest and only daughter, didn’t seem to mind waiting either. She made sure she didn’t only finish college; she went to law school, passed the Bar and got a job and changed jobs twice within a month. She now works at the Illinois Attorney General’s Office (IAGO). And just when I had almost given up on her as well, she told me about dating someone. It didn’t take long after that little “confession,” when Mark, her boyfriend, took us to dinner and in Madelene’s presence, asked Bart and me for her hand in marriage.
Last year on Thanksgiving Day, Mark came with our family to my brother in San Diego. I was glad that even my brother approved of Mark. He thought Mark was okay. And for my brother, okay is actually good.
Christmas Eve was at my niece’s home in Round Lake. Here, Madelene showed off her engagement ring to family and friends. Here brother Paul, with whom she has shared a condo for the past few years, did the toast for the newly engaged couple.
A Perfect Wedding
Every bride and mother of the bride must have planned to see a perfect wedding. The goal is to do the best they could given their circumstances. My daughter wasn’t an exception. With her and Mark’s limited savings, and a little help from us, she did a wonderful job of planning her perfect wedding. She couldn’t afford to hire a wedding planner but did just as great a job as a professional one would have done. From the biggest thing down to the smallest detail as bubbles after the wedding ceremony, there was not a thing missed. And to think that she did all these in the midst of a job transition, I couldn’t help feeling doubly proud of her.
And while she was picky and sometimes difficult during all the wedding planning, she proved quite the opposite on her wedding day. “She isn’t the bridezilla I thought she would be,” was a comment I overheard her matron of honor saying to the bridesmaids the morning of the wedding. And she was right. Madelene was calm despite some snags in the plan. I bet she made sure nothing would spoil her day and true enough, she was a perfect vision of joy and beauty as she walked down the aisle with her dad.
To our precious daughter, Maggie and her husband Mark, may the love and respect you feel for each other now grow with every passing day and stay with you forever. May you always be guided by the wisdom of the Holy Spirit in everything that you do. And may our good Lord bless you always.