Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Today Is Your Birthday!

Happy Twenty-Third Birthday Savannah!

Twenty-three years ago you were born very early, very little, and to parents that didn't have a clue as to what to do with a baby. Like most new mommies I was in awe of this bundle that I was now totally responsible for. But you made being a mom easy.

For the past twenty-three years you have filled our lives with joy. Your sweet spirit and gentle personality are such a blessing to us. You have surpassed all expectations that we ever had for you and we could not be more proud of the gracious,beautiful young woman you have become.

At twenty-three you have your whole life before you. I can't wait to see the wonderful things you do with it. I know you will make a huge impact on this world because you have already made such a difference in ours.

We love you Savannah! Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Ties That Bind

It's been a sad week for our family. We said goodbye to my mother-in-law as she entered into eternal rest on Thanksgiving morning. Her passing was unexpected and there are many things that she brought to this earth that will be missed but there are many things that she left behind that will forever make a difference in peoples lives. Probably the most important being her love of family and the strong familial bond that she instilled in her children.

No one can grow up in a family and leave home after eighteen years and not take some "stuff" when they go. Both tangible stuff and the proverbial "baggage" that we acquire while growing up. Stuff like unmet expectations, sibling rivalry, etc. etc. We can all fill in the etc. part with our own junk. I know this first hand because I am a regular old bag lady when it comes to carrying around stuff from my past! But I learned this week that baggage can be "checked" and hopefully stay forever in the unclaimed baggage area.

When my husband and his family knew that my mother-in-laws time was growing small, he called me and asked if I would like to come and visit her one last time in the hospital. I knew she was hooked up to machines and that seeing her that way would be difficult so I declined at first, but God really put it on my heart that I needed to visit her. Little did I know that in doing so he would bless me with the beauty of one of his finest creations - the love of family. The hours I spent in that hospital room were difficult but hidden in the ashes of impending loss was the beauty of family. There was no space in the small hospital room for baggage of any sort only room for the love of a family as they said goodbye to their mother and helped her transition from this world into the next. She left this earth knowing that she was loved, that her children loved one another, and that the family bond that she had sewn through the years was stronger than any past transgressions and too big to fit into any sort of baggage.

Sandie was very talented in many art forms but by far her greatest masterpiece was her family. I see it in the way my husband loves his family and works hard to provide for us. I see it in my sister-in-laws as they love their families and delight in their grandchildren, and I see it in her grandchildren as they love and care for their own young families. That love doesn't just happen. It has to start somewhere.

Thank you Mimi for loving your family!