Thanksgiving - a time of family, pilgrims, turkey, football, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, midnight shopping, green beans, and traditions being carried out from house to house
Whatever thanksgiving means to you and yours....there is one guarantee, every year you will be given a day where you will be asked to give thanks for what you have!
This day last year I will always remember as being MY rock bottom! I couldn't see past my present, and pregnant and alone was all I could focus on. I didn't think, just a year ago today, I would ever smile again and I didn't know how I would be able to ever recover from the hurt, pain and fear I had let take over every part of me!!! So when asked to give thanks (although I had plenty to be grateful and thankful for) I instead focused on what I didn't have!!!
Well now, exactly one year later, I can't stop counting my blessings!!!! So while everyone I know is naming them off day by day through their Facebook accounts...I've decided to just compile them all right here....so next time I'm having one of those rough spots in my life, I can refer right back to this page and remember exactly how blessed I really am!!!
The things I'm thankful for:
I am thankful to have the most AMAZING parents anyone can ask for. They have definitely dealt with their fare share of "my child did what" moments from me...and no matter what they have always been supportive and never made me feel un-loved!!! They are there for me ANY and EVERY time I need them and support me with out question. They are amazing grandparents and my kids are able to enjoy much more "normal" childhoods because my parents help me out so much!
My friends - this could go ON and ON and ON. But I really do have some of the most AMAZING friends anyone could ask for! I'm a tough friend to have sometimes, and I know that, but there are some people that have stood by me for decades no matter what...for that I'm very lucky!
My son - if you've met him you already know he's one of the smartest yet funniest little guys around. However, behind all of the rowdiness and trouble making he has the biggest heart of anyone I have ever met!I've not always been world's most perfect mom...and probably cried one too many tears in front of him, but no matter what he's always been my rock. He can look at me and with 100% true sincerity and passion tell me he loves me and that everything will be okay and from that I know as long as he's there with me it will be!
My daughter - at only 8 months I can tell Lilliana will be giving me a run for my money. She's a strong willed little diva. I went through hell to get here here but truly believe that she's here for a very special reason. I needed that little girl and all of her big personality to help me figure out exactly where my priorities were placed. Since the day I found out I was pregnant with her I've been asked to check my morals and stand up for what I believe in (something I had forgotten how to do). She made me fight for her and through that I was able to cut out the negative from my life and come to peace with where I am now. She's amazing and I wouldn't take back one irresponsible action that got her here.....however, I have learned from them and for that I am beyond grateful. Can't wait to see what other lessons my little princess has up her sleeve for me through the years!
My kids dads - oh this is a fun one! I go through my share of "he should have", "why didn't he" and "you won't believe what he did now" but the truth is despite everything BOTH of my children have fathers who truly deep down love them and want to spend time with them and although it's not always exactly the way I had hoped or think it should be, my kiddos are lucky to have those men in their lives!
My daughters extended family - last year at this time they were complete strangers to me. I wouldn't have known any of them if I crossed their paths in the vegetable isle. However, today and every day since Lilly has arrived they have served as a rock and a support system that I didn't even know I really needed. They are some of the kindest people I have ever met and not only opened their home to my daughter but also to me and my son, more than anyone could ask for them to do. They are there in a split second if I need help with the kids, if I've double booked myself or if I just need a shoulder to cry on. I believe that the lord put them in our lives to show us how mistakes can be forgiven and how family should really love one another!
My job/jobs - With out being "too republican" I do believe that I was lucky (and by luck I mean I went out and looked for a job rather than depended on the government...okay I'm done) to have the same job for four and a half years. I was able to learn so much and develop as a person while I was with my company. However, I was also lucky (and now I can see this) to have that job quit supporting me just in time for an amazing opportunity to open up. I know the future holds some exciting changes and opportunities that I couldn't imagine I would be a part of 5 years ago. However, through my journey I have learned my strengths and know what exactly I have to offer and what path I want my career to follow and am VERY excited to begin my new journey!
My sons kindergarten teacher - so this sounds a bit silly from an outside view but hear me out.... I decided to put my son in 1/2 day kindergarten at the last minute this year. His school, however, had more kids enrolled than anticipated. The school came up with a plan to put all the 1/2 day kindergartners in one class and hire a new teacher but were not able to tell us who she would be until the day BEFORE school started,....you want to talk about a high stress level!!! However, because of the changes there were more than 115 kindergartners enrolled in his school and my sons class only has 13 in it! Only 13 because that is all that were 1/2 day (do the math, the rest of the classes have more than 25, ugh), and for the new class they brought in a brand new teacher who is beyond excited to be involved, shape their futures and communicates with the parents amazingly. I think that God played a huge roll in making the transition of daycare to school easy for both Devin and probably mostly me! He loves going to school and I love being the classroom mom! It could not have worked out any more perfectly!
My Aunt Kristy and her family - not that I want to say I kept the best for last but I kind of did! My Aunt Kristy is probably one of the most amazing women I have ever met! Her and her husband were missionaries in Mexico, Guatemala and Scotland when I was growing up. They had 4 boys who are now between the ages of 15-22 and she home schooled them until they moved back to the states. The boys are such genuinely kind and caring individuals they make the K-State quarterback, Collin Klien, look like a bad boy! In the midst of having a brand new baby and stressing about kindergarten and daycare...my aunt came to me and offered to watch both Lilly and Devin! At the time I was excited to have such a wonderful person watching my children but had no idea how truly awesome of a situation it would be come. My Aunt Kristy is the most helpful and gracious person I have ever met...through watching her I am learning how to be a better mother, a better friend and learning to forgive people I never thought I could. Through watching the woman she is, I am becoming more thoughtful, more focused on my family and becoming an all around much better person. She does SOOO much for my kids and I but I don't even know if she realizes that just her kind actions alone have had such a huge impact on our lives! We are very lucky and thankful for her and her family!
So I'm sure that this list could go on and on...and the thought of that makes me excited! I can now see how really lucky I am and genuinely be thankful for what God has given me. I hope that all of my family (blood related and non-blood related) truly know how much I love and appreciate them. I hope that they know that the idea of being a "single mom of 2" is a not a curse but rather a huge blessing and a breeze with amazing support like this!!!!