It is with the utmost joy that I deviate from the usual course of content for this blog, and focus on the complete happiness that my brother’s wedding brought our family this past weekend. Rest assured, hunting remains at the forefront of my mind, as I’ve missed several hours in the woods doing family stuff, but the peak of the rut remains, and I have all the free time in the world coming up.
I must admit, I wasn’t too thrilled when my brother messaged me last September with the news that he’d just proposed to his future bride and she’d said yes.
Selfishly, my thoughts were that Josh and I had sort of been cohorts for all of our college life, and that would now end. We’d lived together since the spring of 2004, three years spent hanging out together every single night and doing the typical things that college students do. We even vacationed together. It was a necessary bond between brothers who could be solid for one another when life became frustrating, and it was the best time of my life.
So when Josh got a girlfriend, and they moved in together, I looked at it as good for both of us. After all, he’d still be living near me, and we could still enjoy each other’s company, and he could enjoy the company of a female, something we never considered doing seriously when we lived together.
But the engagement was the one that stung my self-centered outlook the most. Now I knew Josh and my days of living close by were numbered. Now I knew I was losing my best friend. Now there was a finite number of days until the wedding which signaled the end.
But it’s not the end; far from it, in fact.
The wedding, to me, signaled a new beginning for my big brother, and it couldn’t have been more beautiful.
During the wedding, the priest talked of Josh and Nikki’s first date, a date that consisted of going fishing, and how awesome it was that Josh tested a girl from the get-go in order to see if she was the type of girl for him. What the priest didn’t know was that I went along on that date. Nikki, Josh and I took out our little 15-ft. bass boat, and I spent a good amount of the time un-snagging Nikki from the structure we were fishing around while Josh maneuvered the boat. I had to work in the early afternoon that day, around 5, and after I left Josh brought out his GPS system and his map of sunken brush piles, and they ended up limiting out on crappie.
I love this memory, because he saved the best for her.
After watching them exchange vows, I know they absolutely are in love, and I think that same feeling permeated throughout the church.
I know it was one of my grandmother’s and mother’s happiest moments in life.
And if something can bring them such genuine joy, it must be right.
Welcome to the family, Nikki, and congratulations to both of you. I’m so very proud of you both.
Caleb Regan and his wife, Gwen, live in rural Douglas County, Kansas, where they enjoy hunting, fishing, and raising and growing as much of their own food as they can. Caleb can’t imagine a better scenario than getting to work on a rural lifestyle magazine as a profession, and then living that same lifestyle right in the heartland of America. Connect with him on Google+.