365+ days are done.

It’s been over a year. That seems hard to fathom. A whole lot has happened in this year. I believe, I have been through every emotion known to mankind. You name it – I have felt it. Especially the icky ones. But here is what I have learned in a nutshell.

We, as humans, take so much for granted. When your kids kiss you goodnight, you spouse hands you a soda, a friend leaves a sticky note on your car – what level of true appreciation do we have? This year has taught me that life is fleeting. Your whole world can change in an instant – and although we know it – do we comprehend it? Those are two totally separate things. For example, I went to bed a wife – woke up a widow. No idea that was even a possibility. Think of the people affected by a natural disaster – one day they have a home, vehicle, etc. – and in an instant, gone. And that’s just a couple of negatives. Those tend to be more dramatic and folks pay more attention to those.

But, there is the positive, too. And really, the things that we thought that were insignificant could have changed the complete path of your life. I mean, completely. And here is something that I have learned also – I really, truly thought that I could never love anyone but Shaun. And I guess, when I first became a momma – I never thought I could love another child as much as I did him. But then, I had another baby. And guess what – I think I loved them both even more than to start off with. It seems, that once you have love, your heart has a greater capacity for love. It spreads like Kudzu. You learn to see the beauty in a lot of things – and appreciate so many little things. And I feel like that is where I am at. I am content. And it is interesting to say the least, how critical people have been. And I am finally at a place where I respect it – but don’t acknowledge it, per se. I have heard, “It’s too soon… What is she doing… Seems a little quick to me…”, because I am with someone. People criticize what they don’t understand. And here it is. I know you only live once. I know how quick things can be taken. I know to grasp every moment, every second, of everyday. I am happy with my decisions – and I am being completely honest here – I know beyond a shadow of a doubt Shaun would be. He would want this for me. For the kids. I know that I am opening myself up to a ration of criticism in this blog – but I felt like it was important to put out there. Because if anyone reads this and it helps – it’s worth it. I got tough skin. ☺

I am content with me. Myself. My kids. My life. My love. I do not need anything else. As long as I am capable of receiving love, and more capable of giving love – that’s what is important. Shaun has passed – but I am still here. And if there is one thing that man taught me – It’s how to love. How to give it and how to receive it. I love him so much, but my life here must go on. And I am thankful that it does. God has blessed me so much. So I refuse to be angry, bitter, and hateful. I choose to celebrate, love, and be happy. And let the world know – how blessed I am. How lucky I am. How happy I am. And I choose to be this way. I could still be in bed, hiding under the covers, refusing to eat – but how is that honoring God or Shaun. I have been through a lot – but I have been blessed even more.

I used to be scared of becoming old. I’d pray for a long life but I feared old age. Now I know that old age should be worn with pride – there are many to whom it’s denied. I’m gonna end this with a few things I have learned over the past year. I keep sticky notes in purse, and I have random scribbles – so here are a few of my favorites.

If you want to look good, Smile.
Most of the things that we worry about, never actually happens.
If you do not rule your mind, your mind will rule you.
I intend to never feel or act as old as I am.
I believe a coincidence is a small miracle where God stays anonymous.
What your children need more than anything is your time.
Even if we do absolutely nothing – spring comes, the grass grows, and we take another spin around the sun. It’s up to you what you do with it.
Chances are, the things we haven’t worried about are the things that will happen.
Only kids know everything.
For your own sake, learn to forgive those who have offended you.
Sometimes a smile is all that someone else needs.
Heaven can be enjoyed here and now on earth – while we are alive.

So, I am ending this with I love you. I am praying for you. And continue to pray for me. We are all in this together – and thank you for being my support for this past year – my sounding board, if you will. You have no idea how much your positive comments, emails, etc. has meant to me. You will never know. It is an amazing feeling to know that people all across the world has your back. So thanks again – from the bottom of my heart.

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