Stand By You

For those that don’t know, I was lucky enough to marry my girlfriend of 6+ years this September.  Mom had very, very few requests leading up to the wedding, though I insisted that she had to choose the soundtrack to our mother-son dance.

She knew very quickly that she wanted to dance to I’ll Stand By You, by The Pretenders.  She ultimately settled on dancing to the Carrie Underwood version, thus breaking my only rule with the DJ, of “No County.”

I’ll admit that at first, I questioned the decision.  I didn’t love the song, and I really didn’t love the artist, but I told her it was her call, and I wasn’t about to turn back on that offer.  I listened to the song a few times, but never really put a whole lot of thought into why she’d chosen this song… I mean if she wanted a mid 90’s song, it should have been Jovi or Pearl Jam…

Now, I’ve done plenty of dumb things in my 30 years on this planet, and  yet I still didn’t quite get the significance of this song till recently.  She truly has stood by me even when my decisions are inexplicable.  She’s stood by me (albeit with eyes fully rolled) when I entered a high school talent show acting out a WWE wrestling skit involving me getting thrown off a stage and through a table.  And 13 years later, nothing has changed except that she continues to stand by me while I’m determined to enter a sanctioned boxing match.

She’s stood by me at my lowest, she’s stood by me at my best;  though I think what’s most amazing is that she’s stood by me when I’m in between.  She hasn’t just been there when I’ve needed her…. she’s always been there.  She’s there to let me bitch about the mundane of an everyday insurance job, or to really get ramped up about the Red Sox refusing to sign Roy Oswalt.  She’s there far, far more than my peaks and valleys, and that’s the most incredible thing about her.

This is one of my favorite pictures from our wedding last September and I think sums up our relationship until that point.

There I am, full cackle enjoying the endearing yet amusing emotions of a mother on her younger son’s wedding day, while mom takes it all in without giving me a well deserved dope slap upside the head.  With quiet confidence, she continued on enjoying a moment that was truly special to her without letting my somewhat misplaced chuckle steal her moment.

I didn’t get the song last fall, but it now resonates with me in a way now that I wish it had on September 4, 2011.

It’s now our turn, mom, and we will all stand by you.


The infusion pump came out today, and much like anyone would expect, she’s having a rough night.  I think 48 hours of straight chemo would knock anyone for a loop.  Last check she felt better than she did on the Wednesday night after round 1, and she’s determined to get through this round ahead of the last.  Keep her in your thoughts tonight as she could use all the well wishes and prayers we can muster.

Till tomorrow,….



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