Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The biggest sun

Two years and two days ago my life changed forever.  I didn't know at the time, but my life would continue to change throughout the course of the year. 

I couldn't sleep one night (Feb 4th, 2011 to be exact) and stayed up reading.  A neighbor called me.  To say she was panicky would be a huge understatement!  She screamed through sobs that my house was burning down.  WOW!  Ok.  I told her to calm down and it was okay as the boys and I were staying with my parents. 

In an instant, a more composed neighbor was on the phone telling me my grandparents house was on fire.  I was imagining a kitchen fire.  I can't recall what my neighbor said verbatim, but she let me know "It's bad, Robin.  They are okay and the fire department is on the way.  You need to get here!"

I grabbed the boys, woke my parents and we sped to see huge flames in the distance.  I'm certain this is about the time I went into shock.  This was no kitchen fire.  Their whole house was being destroyed by tall red & orange flames.  The smoke was so thick that people were coughing from quite a distance.  My grandparents were safe at a neighbor's house wrapped in blankets shaking and crying.

I ran up the hill to see their house and get a better look at the fire.  Caution tape surrounded the perimeter and then some.  Adrenaline was in full force, so I ran through the caution tape and paid no attention to the authorities telling me it wasn't safe.  A little caution tape wasn't going to stop me when I knew my grandparents were losing everything they owned.

Police officers and fire fighters were standing around talking as snow began to fall.  I remember crying and calling out all I could say in a prayer, which was "Oh, God!"

The fire fighters quickly stopped spraying water and brought out chainsaws to cut the house apart.  The sound was more than I could bare.  I watched the home that I had spent so much of my life in go up in flames.  Thirty years of memories, everything they owned, and so much more all gone. Black. 

"Now the air I tasted and breathed has taken a turn.  And now my bitter hands chafe beneath the clouds of what was everything.  Oh the pictures had all been washed in black.  Tattooed everything. "  Eddie Vedder

The next week was spent shoveling through ashes and snow in what seemed to be the coldest days of any winter I had ever encountered.  Something about the traumatic experience and smell of ashes put together made me shake every time I shoveled.  To this day, I still shake if I ever smell that horrific smell.  My grandparents moved into my house and the boys and I moved in with my parents.

Since then, my grandparents moved into a new house and the boys and I have our own home.  I can't say that I was always okay with the fire and divorce documents that came the same week.

I am at peace now.  You see, God had big plans then and he has big plans now.  God saved my grandparent's lives that cold, winter night.  They were moments away from death and lucky to be alive (this is exactly what the paramedics told me)! 

Whenever you feel like you are drowning in life's situations, remember your maker walks on water.  I think God allows awful things to happen so that our focus is always on him and so that we can truly learn to appreciate our blessings.

It took a long time for me to be content.  I'm so proud to tell you that I want for nothing and am completely content!  Sure, I would love and hope to see my boys grow up happy and healthy, but we don't need a new car, clothes, house, or other "things" to be happy.  I've seen material things burn in a matter of hours.  I've learned what's important in life can't be bought. 

Dear friends, please embrace what's really important in life.  Have a fabulous day and let your smile be the biggest sun in someone else's sky who is in the middle of the storm~

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A New Reality

I haven't had too much time to write lately, but I've promised myself to make time more time.  I hope you all are having the best year ever!

Reality has struck my family and I pretty intensely in the past couple of weeks.  I'd say it's about the same as sprinting into a brick wall, but I know God's in control and I never doubt his plans of greatness.  "Nobody said it would be easy.  They just promised it would be worth it."

Last week my loved one was diagnosed with another disease.  Alzheimer's.  I can't express how that specific word and all that comes with it is a tough one to register, let alone deal with first hand on a daily basis.  It's not fair to keep it a secret from her anymore, so my family and I told her on her birthday.  I dobut she remembers, but that may be best.  I've never spoon fed medicine to anyone other than my sweet babies.  I've never done a list of other things for someone who is helpless other than my children.  Scratch that, two years ago I sat with a neighbor in the hospital until she passed because eveyrone needs someone and she had no family that cared enough to be with her. 

I trusted God and listened to him when I resigned from my previous position with my former employer.  You all know (well I hope you do) that I don't believe in coincidences.  God knew long before I did that my new position would be to run a family business and be a caregiver.  "I know God won't give me more than I can handle.  I just wish he didn't trust me so much."  ---Mother Teresa

Being a mommy is a caregiver position,  but it's different if it's your own children or just children period.  I've been a caregiver to children that weren't my own.  It's so much different when roles are reversed and you find yourself being a caregiver and making decisions for a precious older adult who is dear to your heart & a family member. 

I always thought that being a mommy was the hardest job in the world.  It is tough.  Don't get me wrong. But, I was wrong.  My current "job" is so rewarding knowing I can take care of my sweet & precious loved one, but it's a challenge to say the least.  I do my best, pray, and know God gives me the strength to do what I do.  Without him, I wouldn't be able to do it.  I can't tell you how it hurts my heart to see the things I've seen and to do the things I do because she can't do it herself nor can she remember to do basic things. 

Things have been wonderful with my sweet boys!  Yesterday, my oldest told me he loves me because I'm the best mommy in the world.  I'll take that one to the bank!  In my opinion, that's hands down the best compliment I could ever receive as a mommy! 

I discovered "rodent droppings" under the sink and panicked!!  I'm talking the boys and I stayed a couple of nights with family members type of panicked!  I'm petrified of rodents, reptiles, and most all the other little critters my boys love.  My grandfather set the mouse traps while we packed our bags =)  We returned home two nights later when I knew that sweet, plump, "Mickey" was dead and removed from our home.  I couldn't stand the thought of a mouse in our beds or running across the floor!  Ahhhhh!  Let's hope he doesn't have a family!

I'm BEYOND excited for the weekend!  I'm prepared for birthday parties, church, and to to see the superbowl commercials and my childhood idol (Madonna) to deliver an exceptional halftime show.

Life IS great and I'm so blessed.  I never take that for granted.  I say I love you lots because I don't know when I won't be able to say it anymore.  I take lots of photos even if they aren't gorgeous.  Health can change in an instant.  Well, anything can and I've become extremely aware of that. 

I hope you all have a fabulous weekend, tell those you love how you feel, and enjoy the little things in life!  I smile even when it's hard, because I am certain that one smile may brighten someone else's day.  I say I'm sorry because I am and I don't argue (well, most of the time).  I believe in love, happiness, peace, happy endings, and so much more!  Happiness is a choice and I choose to be happy!  I hope you all are too!  It's contagious =)  May God bless you and show you all you have to be blessed about.