This was a weekend of white dresses. My best friend Jenni is getting married in December. Saturday afternoon she called me wanting me to see a couple dresses she had been trying on at a boutique. Without hesitation I ran to the car and was on my way to meet her.
The dress Jenni tried on was stunning. Her mom, sister and I looked at her with our jaws dropped and eyes filling with tears. While I realize that it's just a dress, a wedding dress is very special.
Sunday was First Communion at church. Young girls wore white dresses with lace veils and gloves. They too were stunning. As I watched these second-graders through Mass I prayed for their special day. I don't think that it's a mere coincidence how much a first communicant resembles a bride. One young communicant caught my eye as her mother draped her arm around her shoulder, holding her lightly after receiving Christ for the first time. The small girl rested her head on her mothers shoulder while her mother wiped her own tears away.
This image stayed in my mind quite awhile. There are many occasions where it is appropriate to weep, but I am always struck when tears come not for sadness or joy, but for complete and overwhelming awe. As a mother, how amazing it must be to have the child that you carried as a vessel now a vessel for Christ, a living tabernacle of His love.
Life is a never-ending cycle, and I feel so blessed that I am able to witness the beauty of family and faith. On one side I get to see a dear friend prepare for marriage, a sacrificial giving of oneself, and on the other I am able to witness the love of a mother for her daughter as they are first able to share in the Eucharist. I think tears of awe and white gowns go hand in hand.