Monday, December 31, 2018

Dear 2018

You were a rough one weren't you?  A roller coaster unlike any other I have been on.  From the highest highs to the lowest lows, but I'm still standing. 

At the start of the year we got a glimmer of hope that my brother would be ok, but that was short lived.  By March we knew the end of his courageous battle was near.  I was so fortunate to be able to travel to Ohio to spend time with him.  I got to help care for him, talk to him, hold his hand.  The last day I was there I got to have a last conversation with him.  I told him what a great big brother he had been to me.  His response was so "Bob", when he said " You were an ok sister". Typical.  lol. He assured me he was not scared, but sad, but ready to go.  We gave our last I love yous and then he told me to "Hang in there".  Then he went to sleep.  Walking out of the house knowing I would never again hear his voice again was terrible.  Less than a week later, God called him Home.  I was honored to do a reading at his funeral (and honestly I cannot believe I did it).  Harder though than losing my brother, was watching my mom mourn the loss of her son.  Her baby boy.  I cannot even imagine how but she handled it with grace and courage.  My sister in law and nephews amazed me with their strength and resolve.  I will miss him always, but am glad his suffering is over.

We also lost our dear Aunt Phil at the same time as we lost Bob.  She was nearly 103 years old and feisty as all get out.  She saw a lot in her life time  and loved to play piano.  Such a great life she had.

Another blow to our family was the loss of my Uncle Moose in October.  Uncle Moose taught me how to swing a bat (or tried to anyway).  He had the biggest heart, and the best laugh of anyone I ever knew.  He will be sorely missed.

2018 also took a great family friend from us.  She trusted me with her kids when I was still practically a kid, and gave me a second family for a large portion of my younger years.  Debi was hilarious and caring and just a great friend.  Her kids are shining examples of all that was good in Debi and her late husband Jim.

However, 2018 also gave me some amazing things as well.  In February, Mark and I decided to put our marriage back together.  We had been separated since 2015 and I prayed everyday that we would find our way back to one another and God came through in a big way for us and here we are!

I got to spend a week in Ohio with Adam and his sweet girlfriend, Bekah.  We had a family picnic with my dad's family and then a huge family reunion with my mom's family.  It was great to get to spend time with all my family, but especially my mom.

July found Adam and I packing up our home and getting ready to go our separate ways.  He was  moving into his first apartment.  The last weeks of summer were rough on me knowing that my "baby" and I  would never again live under the same roof.  Our days of cooking together and hanging out were coming to a close.  We moved him on 7/30 and then Mark and I set out over the open road.

I learned so much about myself in the first three months on this truck.  It was quite the learning curve living in about 100 square feet of space, day in and day out.  22-24 hour a day.   I love so many things about it, but it took me a moment to adapt.  There were a lot of tears and tons of sleepless nights, that is for sure.  We were in 38 states in the first 90 days.  I took 7 weeks off in November and December and could.not.wait. to get back out here.  I loved the time I got to spend with the boys while I was home but woo wee I needed to be back in this truck with  my husband.

One of my best friends gave birth to her beautiful daughter, Miriam, on 12/20.  I cannot wait to see that little baby girl as soon as we can get there.  Robin, her husband Bill and Miriam's big brother  Theo are all very excited about her arrival.

Finally, we had a WONDERFUL Christmas with three of our four sons and the lovely ladies in their lives.  We ate, talked, watched football (Saints won!) and opened tons of presents.  I do not think there was a happier woman on the planet that day (12/23).  I FINALLY had my husband, and most of my kids with me and I was on top of the moon.

The next day, back out on the road..but that is for the next blog.

So, 2018, you ran me all over the place emotionally but you didn't run me down.  I am thankful for the lessons I learned this year and the things I have gotten to do.

2019, let's go.  I have more places to go, people to see and more lessons to learn.  I cannot wait to see what comes next.

To my family and friends, Happy New Year to you all! I wish you the best of everything in 2019.  Thank you for continuing to read my blog.  There is much more to come!

Love always.

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