Ed and I were husband and wife, and we also were dad and mom. We did our best to stay connected as a couple while staying close as a family. We believed that our job as parents was to give our two sons roots and wings. We also kept in mind that one day they would leave the nest, and we would be a couple again.
We both volunteered together at many of their activities. It wasn’t always easy. We were no angels. We argued like normal married couples do, but we tried to show the boys how to resolve issues with understanding and love. We did our best to let our sons know that even if we didn’t always like what they did, we still loved them and each other.
Ed especially enjoyed having the boys involved in Boy Scouts. He went with them to campouts and other dad-and-son Scouting events. As they progressed in rank, our sons learned to be men of honor and ingenuity. Ed told me that he worried about the time that Scouts was taking away from us as a couple. I felt so loved by his concern. I told him that I was willing to sacrifice time away from him for the good of our sons.
At the Eagle Scout ceremonies, Ed was recognized for his amazing effort mentoring the boys. To my surprise, I also was recognized. The boys, each during their individual Eagle ceremonies, pinned me with special mom Eagle pins. Each time, Ed looked at me with great joy as tears streamed down my face. I hugged my sons with a joy that is hard to describe. We were humbled and honored to be their parents. Ed was a wonderful husband and a great dad.
Leonor “Leo” and Ed Rivera were members of the local Worldwide Marriage Encounter community for 32 of their 34 years of marriage until Ed unexpectedly died of a genetic heart defect on Aug. 1, 2020.
To read more of Leo and Ed’s blogs, visit https://catholiccourier.com/viewpoints/blogs/to-have-and-to-hold.