Today is my 32nd birthday. I can honestly say that I never could have imagined all that transpired from last year’s birthday to this one.
2015 has been HARD for our family. Obviously, the most recent and probably hardest to date is losing Leslie. Back in February, we lost my 36 year old uncle suddenly. In the midst of his passing, my grandma (his mom) was struggling with heart issues and we watched her getting weaker and weaker and weaker. The weekend my uncle died was the weekend Leslie finally ended up in the hospital for the first time.
March 17th was probably one of the hardest and toughest days of my life. I was on the way to my doctor appointment for my three hour glucose test and my mom called me and told me that Leslie was not good and that she needed to be moved to Kansas City. She was very sick that day and we weren’t sure if she would get through it. I had some emotional texts with Leslie that day that included discussions about the future for the girls if something happened to her. Let me tell you, that’s not something you ever want to talk about.
In the mid-afternoon that day, we got confirmation from my dad that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. It truly felt like the world was crumbling around us. My mom was moving to NWA for however long to take care of Caroline and Ainsley and my dad was going to be going through this huge medical ordeal. Fortunately, his prognosis was good, and he is expected to be cured, but cancer isn’t ever something you want to face, especially as you have another family member fighting for their life.
After all that, I got confirmation that I’d failed my three hour glucose test. That was just icing on the cake (ha!) for the day. That was obviously minor in the scheme of things, but it still concerned me because more than anything, I wanted Grant to avoid a NICU stay as I never wanted to experience that again. I closed my office door around 4:00 and spent the last hour of the day in tears. It was one of the moments where I felt like my world was falling apart. In the midst of all this, my grandma also underwent very serious heart surgery and it took a LONG time for her to recover. She is still working on getting back to normal, but we are thankful to still have her here with us.
I share all this because as I face another year, I’m truly aware of the fact that LIFE IS SHORT. We are never promised tomorrow and our lives can take a complete turn in an instant. I wish I could rewind a year and change some things. No matter what you say, or what you did, it seems as though when someone leaves your life, there’s always something more you wish you’d said or done.
I’ve decided in the time since Leslie passed that the new motto for my life is to “live and live well!”! We only get ONE life to focus on the things that matter. To be present in the moment. To be the people Jesus calls us to be. TO LIVE!
They are my life. I’m not sad I’m turning another year older. I’m grateful to be here with them to see another day, and Lord willing, another year. I am right where I want to be and I’m going to live this next year fully and wholly and not take one day for granted!