Another one of "my" kids got married this past weekend. Another set of parents who've been kind enough to let me be a part of their family, have watched their baby march straight into what is becoming an increasingly difficult world.

I first met Alison (and her sister Ashley) when she was in elementary school. My dear friend Jeff, her dad, brought her to work on "Take Your Daughters to Work Day". To be honest, she was an absolutely adorable, well-behaved, but sleepy and somewhat bored observer.

Over the years, I've watched her grow into a beautiful young woman; who at times was overwhelmed and bewildered by life. I have considered myself extremely fortunate to be on her short list of people she would turn to, as I myself have also struggled with my place in the world.

We have bonded over our mutual love of animals, travel, food that is bad for us, and comedy. She actually took me to a Bob Newhart show and a Jeff Dunham show and those events still top my list of best entertainment experiences of all time.

We have also found solace in our mutual disregard for mean people, our bewilderment at personal betrayal and the healing power of a really good rack of ribs!

I have found that simply thinking about Alison's impish smile, can bring one to my face. Her over-the-top, reactions to some of life's best surprises, (finding out she was going to be an aunt) warm my heart like few things can.

Something I must do is send a huge thank you to Jeff and his gorgeous wife Vicki for treating me like family, and for trusting me with this precious creature who has made my life much richer by simply being.

Watching Alison and her groom Josef walk down the aisle as a married couple was as surreal, as it was beautiful. I swear she was just very recently a sweet little girl in pigtails, sitting in my lap, very animatedly explaining a song she liked to me.


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