This may have been my longest absence yet! Many apologies to those who have enjoyed reading about our army. Those of you who know me understand that our family has gone through a lot since just before Christmas.
I hope she will forgive me for opening up about this, but we started with "Mommy" who is only 34, receiving a diagnosis of breast cancer. Talk about a punch in the gut for all of us. I am in awe of how she and the Trooper handled all of it. Together they have guided us through a double mastectomy, chemotherapy, and reconstruction. Faith can not only move mountains, it can build them.
In the midst of "Mommy's" life event, Doc ended up in the hospital and surgery with a hand infection. In my absence while helping with "Mommy", Calvin and Mini-Me stepped up to the plate and took care of their father. The rest of the gang pitched in as needed. I love my gang!!! There were other surgeries in the gang, the "Stylist" and "Chief". Again, our gang are a bunch of troopers.
In March, my mother passed away. Although it was not a great relationship, she was my mother and that brought with it a whole new set of emotions.
Finally, a bit of fun and good news, but still hectic times.... The "Surprise" and his "Lacrosse" both graduated from college in May and moved home. Love having them around, but the graduation, party and move were exhausting. And, they have now added a Great Dane to the mob of hounds that surround us.
Calvin also finished residency and we attended a beautiful dinner and listened to a speech that touched my heart. I wish I had it in writing to share.
The "Blonde" got married in July, so that kept us busy with planning, bridal shower, bachelorette party.... all the crazy wedding stuff!!! The entire gang was in the bridal party including the grandbabies! I loved it. And there are two more on the way!! Calvin and P3 are waiting for a baby girl and so are Mini-Me and the Admiral. That will bring us up to eight.
Barely time to breathe, and yet I am most grateful for every minute of my life, even the tears. I came across a letter that "Mommy" wrote to me at Christmas. I cried....again.... I hope she forgives me for sharing. It is the kind of letter that every mother should get a chance to receive from their child. (I have taken a few lines out) So.....
Merry Christmas! This year, I wanted to tell you how much you mean to me and to thank you for the many ways that you have influenced my life. Without you, I would not be the person that I am today. You may not realize it, but sometimes it's the little things that are noticed and remembered. So, here are just a few of the life lessons that I have earned from you.
Intelligence is one of the most important things that a person can possess. You always encouraged me to read, learn and explore. With every new experience came new knowledge. I was always eager to be smart "like Mommy."
Wit is another sign of intelligence. Your wit continues to make me giggle, and I am proud to say that I think a little of it has rubbed off on me.
Flexibility keeps your sane. You have taught me that if you try to maintain a rigid schedule, and you are not willing to be flexible, then you will struggle. Life throws curveballs at you, and you have to be willing to roll with the punches. You have even shown me that life will continue even if you arrive late...ALL THE TIME!
Generosity. You paid for a meal for a table of soldiers and always have dollars to spare for the Salvation Army buckets during the holidays. You taught me that money is not the most important thing in life, and when you have what you need, your money should be used to help others.
Selflessness is a mother's blessing. You always put EVERYONE's needs before your own. Your children were the most important things in your life...From skinned knees to hurt feelings, you took care of every wound like it was your won. Time (and money) was not an issue as long as it fixed my broken heart.
With your selflessness, came both tenderness and firmness. You were there to walk beside me in my troubles, but also to give me a swift kick in the butt when I needed it. The late night talks to deal with bullies, anxiety and life were some of the most important moments in my growth.
Faith is the foundation of life. As we have faced every challenge in my life together, you have always reminded me of the importance of faith. God is the pillar of your life, and you have firmly passed that faith on to me. I face every challenge with a prayer on my lips, God in my heart, and a Bible by my side.
I love you Mom. In the years to come, I hope that my daughters can learn as many of these life lessons from me as I have learned from you.
I cried....again.... Well, my first post back is certainly long and packed with love. I hope your life is filled with faith, hope and love. Although we think we are supposed to teach our children, this year, I have learned from them. Have a blessed day.
Wife, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Nurse, Grandmother, Friend...that's me in a nutshell!