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Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mixed emotions

Every once in a while my birthday falls on Mother's Day. That happened this year. And, as most people know, Marc and I share the same birthday, so with that in mind and it also being Mother's Day, it was a pretty big day around here.

It feels very appropriate to me to celebrate the day I was born on the same day we honor our mothers. It's like a double celebration of my Mom and she deserves that, no doubt. For all who know her well, know how blessed and lucky I am to belong to her. And I am!

The whole weekend, though, felt a little overwhelming and kind of heavy. Like big, dark storm clouds hanging off in the distance. On Saturday there was a tragic drowning accident in our little town, to a family I know and a fellow young mother in our play group. She lost her little boy yesterday, just barely older than my two boys. It hits way too close to home. My heart felt like it broke in a million pieces when I first heard the news. There were a whole lot more tears at church today. It's just so heartbreaking and we're all in shock.

It seems that everyone is feeling a little more protective, a little more cautious, and a lot more grateful for even the crazy moments with our little ones. It's good to be reminded of what matters most in life, but it's hard that it sometimes takes such sad events to remind us. Life is so fragile and mortality is so unpredictable. Death can come to anyone at anytime for any number of reasons. We're just never ready for it to happen to someone so young, so fresh, so full of promise. And, it's humbling to realize no one is immune.

I've had a hard time processing this friend's loss. I can feel my defense mechanisms blocking my emotions to a certain extent, pulling me away from the strong pull of grief. I also fully recognize that my losses are totally different than this loss and it's just too painful to try to put myself in her shoes. It takes my breath away and makes my heart rate increase. It's awful even trying to imagine.

The other side, though, that brings me an incredible reassurance in the face of sorrow and pain is that there is a healing balm available that is equal to the wound. That is a beautiful, miraculous, merciful blessing provided by a very loving Father. No matter the tragedy, no matter the depth and the size of our wounds, there is healing that can be found. It is painful. It is hard and it will take time. But, it is possible to find... and as hard as that journey is and as unwelcome as the path appears, there are powerful experiences along the way.

I'm feeling so much more grateful tonight for my life, my family, my blessings. I just hope I can find ways to help lift the burdens of those who are mourning.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Living and loving my life!

Life is busy around here. My free time lately has been dedicated to things that I love doing. And, I feel so grateful to be able to do so many things that I love.

First, of course, is time spent with my babies. I guess some might argue that time spent with them is not my free time, but I'm going to call it that anyway. On most days and in most moments they are just so much fun. Lucy is growing like crazy! As of today, she is TEN months old. A month ago she weighed 21 pounds 9 ounces and measured at 29.5 inches long - in the 90-something percentiles for both. She has learned how to wave and does it all the time. She's refusing the pureed baby food she used to devour and now insists on eating off my plate. She has figured out how to ride her big brothers' motorized quad, even daring to stand while it's in motion (redefining for us what it means to be fearless). She can stand up with ease and is so steady that we're pretty sure she'll be walking before she turns one. I keep wondering where my baby went... they grow so fast!

It seems that the older the boys get, the more time they spend playing nicely together. They are best friends and do pretty much everything together. I'm so glad they have each other and get along so well, for the most part. They are talking like crazy and come up with the most hilarious things. The other day I captured a moment of the two boys in the backyard, sitting on the steps with big sticks talking about how they were fishing, reeling in their catches. Pretend play at its very best!

They're into pretending to fish because we've been doing a lot of real fishing the last couple of months. My mom bought my dad and I fishing licenses, so we've have a set day of the week when we go fishing together. The second time we went out Hugh happened to wake up while I was getting ready, so I asked him if he wanted to go with us. He was so excited! When we came home later, Ben wanted to go so bad that we all went back out for a little longer. It's a little crazy to have the two boys out with us, worrying about them falling in the water or doing something crazy like getting a fish hook stuck in a finger (like what happened to me when I was a little girl out fishing with my dad and brothers). So, we have rules that we try to get them to follow. Some rules are sinking in better than other... Last week as we were driving out to our fishing spot, I was going over the rules with the boys and when I asked them what the first rule was, Ben said, "Eat doughnuts." Pretty smart kid, I'd say!

Most other mornings are spent running or biking, training for my half marathon next month. So far it's going great! Tomorrow is a 9-miler and I'm feeling pretty good about where I'm at.

Most evenings are spent relaxing on the couch with Marc, either watching a favorite show on TV (Survivor or Amazing Race, anyone?!) or helping Marc with some website projects. He's taught me how to do some basic things and I find it fun to help him do what he loves to do. Now, if we can just get my new blog design up and running... hopefully soon!