Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankfulness

I have to say, I have thoroughly enjoyed all the "thankful" posts that have filled my Facebook newsfeed this month. It has been so positive reading about the blessings that fill each other's lives. Even though I didn' t add my written thanks, these posts were a way for me to be reminded of the many, many things I have to be thankful for. As it is a day devoted to giving thanks, it is only fitting that I share some of what I am thankful for.

Jason

There are so many reasons I am thankful for Jason. He is the solid base upon which our family stands. It's Jason who makes sure that all the necessary logistics are taken care of. He has the "glamorous" job of paying the bills, mowing the lawn, changing the light bulbs, fixing the plumbing, and all the other little "joys" that come from home-ownership. I tell you, I would be completely lost with all of that stuff if it weren't for him. Beyond his various chores, that I greatly appreciate (and don't thank him enough for) there are two much bigger reasons why I am thankful for him. First, Jason has never squashed my creativity and spirit. I've had some pretty crazy ideas in the past, and instead of giving me a list of why they won't work, he talks through it with me and helps me create a plan. Many of those ideas have not gone beyond the initial test run (ask him about the juicer sometime), but some have great potential - and I couldn't have done any of it if I didn't have someone cheering me on, someone who supported me no matter what. I can't tell you how much I appreciate that.

Secondly, I am thankful for the father that Jason is to Abby. I have talked in the past about how wonderful those two are together, but it goes much deeper than shared fun. Jason has given Abby an incredible sense of self, and her own self-worth. She is his pride and joy, and that is glaringly apparent. She has confidence in herself because he has confidence (and a great love) in her. He truly is the best dad she could have been blessed with.

Family and Friends

What a support system we have! We have family and friends who will be there at a moment's notice, will be the first ones to cheer us on, and who continually forgive me when I drop the ball (someday I will get better at sending cards - regularly....really....I promise....someday....). The biggest thing though, is that my friends and family always have my back, and they are not stingy with their uplifting words. It always seems that just when I need it, someone is there that will offer a play date for Abby, a girls' night out for me, or even a simple thumbs up that lifts my spirits. I am so thankful for all of you.

Struggles

There was a time in my teens when I was terribly, terribly afraid of difficult times. I can remember actually praying for an easy go of it - as if we all have some cosmic bucket of struggles and once mine was full I would certainly have an easy life. I've come to realize that the "struggles" aren't punishments or finite. When I look back at the times in my life that have been the most difficult, I can clearly see the learning and growth that came from it - and how God has used that to influence my future. For example, I've always found it quite fitting that my most difficult year of school was my fifth grade year, and here I am - a fifth grade teacher (this is how I teach irony). Out of some of my greatest struggles, have come my greatest blessings.

Abby

Quite honestly I am still baffled from time to time that I am a mother at all, but there are so many nights that I look at Abby's sweet face, relaxed in sleep, and marvel that I am her mother. I remember in the very beginning, when we got the news that changed our perspective on her future, thinking: Why us? Of all the people, why us? How very narrow my view was at that point! Abby is amazing...I mean honestly, she's pretty incredible. I have never known someone who can grasp a hold of peoples' hearts as quickly and completely as Abby. She is just one big, incredible, blessing. There are times when I will still ask the above questions, but my tone is much different. Now I marvel when I ask: Why us? Of all the people, why us? because I cannot imagine that I've ever done anything to deserve such a blessing as Abby.

While waiting for dinner, Abby decided it would be nice
to share one of her favorite stories with her fairy friends.
Abby was so excited to go to Grandma's house for
a sleepover, that she barely said, "Hello!" before she
got comfy in Grandma's bed and started to "snore" - apparently,
she took the whole "sleepover" very literally.
Smiles for snacks at Grandma's.
The lady rides in style, complete with popcorn, movie,
and two Snow White's - because you can't just have one.

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