This week has been spent in Cancun…to attend the wedding of one of my favorite people in the world. There is just no getting away from it. She has just always been such an amazing person to me and so nothing would have altered my plans of traveling here to be part of her special day. Rebeca has been part of my life for almost 8 years now, then having given me the chance to work at a local establishment in Mexico, which allowed me to be legal as I worked in an effort to support my diving habit.
But putting that aside, she also continued to support my objectives in life…me wanting to be able to remain in this country legally, be with the man who I had chosen to share it with, as I adjusted to a different culture than the one where I was from…while meeting people from my own country, the likes of which I had never encountered before.
Last week, she and I went to dinner to catch up (it having been over 2 years since we had seen each other)…when she put it in a nutshell…you got up every morning to go to work and had no idea where the day would take us. The scene that would unfold for us while serving the American tourists coming off of cruise ships for a taste of “Mexican” culture as they had understood it to be…how much money we would earn…what crazy stories we might gain to take home to our own loved ones each day…the shock I might experience as I met another “type” of American I had never known before. I could not have put it better…and until you’ve done it, you have no idea what I’m talking about.
The week then took me back to Cozumel to visit for a day of diving. I was able to get in on the afternoon before my day of diving which allowed me to stop by Senor Frog’s (formerly known as C&C’s), where I was able to visit with some of the people who I used to work with…have a few drinks before then enjoy a beautiful sunset like so many of the ones I used to witness while still living there. Really insane! Then my day of diving was as incredible as any other day diving down to Palancar Caves. The clarity being what it is in the Caribbean and then as we dove off the wall, I was able to witness that vastness that always amazed me while diving in Cozumel so many years ago. Where you could literally put your back to the wall and only see that amazing blue fill your mask as you looked out into the waters between Cozumel and Playa. That feeling of total loss of gravity.
Once back in Cancun, the only thing on my list of things to do was to attend my friend’s wedding…on the beach, at a church that was just so beautiful that it made me forget those massive structures back in Brooklyn where we used to go to prove that we were “good Catholics” as I was so easily reminded how simple things can be while being just as significant. After the mass, we all walked down the road to the reception where we spent the next 8 hours drinking and dancing and sharing the night that I know has completely changed the life of this amazing friend of mine. Granted, while I ended up having known a couple of the guests, it was really only Rebeca who I knew before attending this wedding. (Just having met her fiance for the first time, only a few nights earlier…though since he referred to her as the angel he had found, I knew he was the man for the job.)
But it was during this party when I was finally able to meet her mother (who only lost her husband about 2 months ago). And it rang so true what she told me about my friend, something I had never thought of before. I had been singing the praises of Rebeca, how amazing a person I have just always considered her to be, someone whose unending support I have just always appreciated, for as long as I have known her. When her mother told me how “naturally” kind she knew her daughter to be. And that was it, that is the best way to describe this friend of mine…naturally kind…pure…as though nothing would ever change that about her. (Maybe why I have always called her “Sunshine.”)
I then spent the rest of the night wondering if we aren’t all “naturally” something when I realized that it was what I am naturally which actually brought me and Rebeca together so many years ago…and that is that I am just naturally “independent”…like a warrior. She knew then that no matter what, I would always defend her and take her side…even if it left me friendless. I have always been lucky to be able to find people to share my life with who were just naturally kind people…something that allowed me to be a stronger warrior in my unending defense of them and their lives.
So while it was a beautiful day for my beautiful Rebeca to marry her beautiful Prince, it ended up being such a beautiful week for me to spend having such an eye-opening, self-reflective time as I continue to learn so much about myself and those around me.
Salud Rebeca y Paco! I love you guys! I will forever be your warrior!