Don't get me wrong. I have close family, but almost all of my close family is my husband and my children. I have no parents (I'll get into this in a bit), my grandpa has passed and my grandma is in a home now. The relative that I am the closest to is probably my aunt and she lives just over 2,000 miles away. Next would probably be my uncle, but he is also over 2,000 miles away. My point is, I have no parent-child relationship of my own to compare to.
Before I elaborate, let me give you some background info. I was adopted as a baby and was raised by a woman who has become quite distant from me. I'm fine with this and have made my peace. Nothing more to tell about her...her parents are who I consider my grandparents and I love them dearly. They have always been my steady rock and people I could always count on. They are wonderful people and I'm honored to be part of their family. I was devastated when my grandpa died and I visit my grandma weekly in the facility where she lives now. Basically, they are my people. I love them like they were my parents. But they're not. They are not my parents. I have a wonderful grandparent/grandchild relationship with them, but it's not the same as parent/child. I understand that more than ever now that I have 2 children of my own. I also have a very positive relationship with my birth mom. I lived with her for 2 years and have known her my whole life. She's a wonderful, kind, generous woman with so much love and compassion. She also lives 3,000 miles away on the opposite side of the country. This, as you can imagine, does not assist in the parent-child relationship. While I love her dearly, she is not the woman who raised me. She's not the one who took me to the doctor when I broke my collar bone or held a cool washcloth on my forehead when I had a fever. We share DNA and we think alike, but as far as those mother-daughter moments go, we have very few. We understand each other on a deeper level, but the emotional connection is not what it is with most parents and their children. This is also okay. It's not something I have been needing my entire life and I'm not the least bit bitter or upset about anything I've missed out on because she decided not to keep me. I have always understood her reasons and I've never been upset about it.
Anyway, getting back to the wedding thing...I see parents dancing with their children all the time. I see the closeness they share and the emotion that goes into the day and that last first dance. Both parties are almost always crying and when fathers dance with their daughters, I almost always get misty-eyed. I wonder what it would be like to have a parent there for you like that, to have that closeness with a parent, to have that kind of love. You know, the love that I have for my children, but that lasts through adulthood. I see it, but I have never felt it.
All I can say is that I will feel it someday. I may not get to feel this way as the child, but I am looking forward to the day when I can feel this way as the parent. I know I will cry when I dance with my son at his wedding and when my husband dances with our daughter on her wedding day. I look forward to the lasting parent-child relationships that I have missed out on before. I didn't have the choice then, but I absolutely have the choice now and I'm not about to mess it up!