Being Thankful

Our annual family Thanksgiving get together was yesterday and once again our table overflowed with bounty of all kinds – delicious food, great conversation and catching up on each other’s lives. A few of our loved ones were absent at the table but present in our hearts – Sean (hope you’re feeling better!), Katie and Jackson, Chad and Kirsten, and Scott, Cindy, Brody, Darby and Hailey. We had new family at our table too - our son Evan's wife Heather and her parents Shaun and Mildred. Now you're officially 'in'. Welcome to the fold!
The day was nice enough outside to sit on the deck before supper – leaves falling in the wind onto the already leaf-laden back yard, wind chimes gently joining in with the laughter and stories, family members touching base and sharing their news.
In this province and country of plenty, it’s easy to take our lives for granted and the way we live as something that is our right. It is good to have a day to reflect and remember, cherish and appreciate, and to be thankful for the abundance we enjoy on a daily basis. Fresh air, fresh water, fresh food, love, comfort, friends, and family – we are rich beyond our wildest dreams in the things that truly make life a miracle.
Things are just things but it’s the people in our lives that make all the difference. I am thankful for all of our friends and family and for the bounty in all forms that touches my life.
Thank you for being part of my life. I am thankful for you, always.

Heather and Evan - June 7, 2014

Last Saturday we had the honour of watching our son Evan marry the young woman he’s been in love with for the last seven years. When he was younger, I often thought about the type of woman he would marry – and I wondered how I would feel about that. His was not an easy childhood, teenage-hood or even young adulthood both for him and for us. We never gave up on him and more importantly, he never gave up on himself. I knew it would take a special person to be the love of his life – someone who was strong, gentle, loving and understanding – and who had a good sense of humour. Who knew he would find his soulmate at sixteen AND that she would not only love him back but stick around through the trials and tribulations of a maturing male?

It’s hard to be a mom – to nurture, protect and raise your children then just when you a)figure you’ve done all you can do and the rest of it is up to the universe and b)realize they are turning into a person you can actually stand to be around, someone comes and scoops them away. You have to unravel the cocoon that motherhood wove around them and let them soar into their own life, for better or for worse. Letting them be their own person is one thing, letting them go is quite another.

Heather is Evan’s perfect one true love, in every way. It wasn’t so much a case of letting our son go, but instead welcoming a beautiful young woman into our family and our hearts. That made it all so much easier, especially from a mother’s point of view.

Parents want the best for their children, and in Heather, Evan has found the best for himself. Step aside Brangelina, we have Heavan – the perfect blend of Heather and Evan – truly a match made in heaven.

Stop! Don't Go

Up until a few months ago, I was that person with the full Day-Timer, with something planned almost every evening and weekend. It was like every day someone said ‘on your mark, get set, GO! and I was off. This had gone on for decades and it seemed like it was working just fine.

Then last year a strange thing happened. I hit a wall and it all came tumbling down. Where I used to be like Gumby and could bend every which way (figuratively speaking!), I became Mrs. Potato Head with all my important bits falling off – eyes, ears, nose, glasses. I wasn’t sleeping well, wasn’t functioning well and literally felt at the end of my rope. Poetry in reverse motion.

I landed on the ground with a thump and it took the support of a great many people (my own personal village) to put Humpty back together again.

What have I learned so far?
  • The most important things aren’t things. They are people – my family, my friends, my peers.
  • I was doing things because I thought I had to. Not sure why. Seemed to be living my life based on someone else’s rules. What the heck was that all about?
  • I wasn’t doing the things I loved anymore, or at least I didn’t love the things I was doing.
  • I forgot what my passions were.
  • I forgot that home was my sanctuary.
  • I forgot that doing nothing was really relaxing and satisfying.
  • I remembered what it felt like to enjoy the moment.
  • I realized I was holding my breath most of the time.
  • I am remembering how good it feels to just breathe.
I was astonished at how far from my true self I had drifted…caught up in goodness knows what. I wasn’t writing much and spent many of my holidays catching up on sleep before I could even enjoy the vacation. I wasn't even present in my own life. Yikes!
I had to do something drastic so I gave up all of my evening and outside of work obligations so I could regroup, re-establish and rebuild myself. It has been a huge eye opener.
I love coming home and sitting reading with the cat, or chatting with my husband without timelines and obligations. I love free weekends, to sleep in, visit with family, knit, enjoy and savor. I forgot how good time feels – and how much I cherish my free time.
I’d created my very own rat race and was wearing myself into the ground. My body finally said enough and I had to listen. It was time to stop and smell the roses that I hadn’t even seen were there.
Taking each day as it comes and so grateful for all of the beauty in my life. Thank goodness I can finally see it again. I finally feel like me…silly as it sounds. I forgot how good it feels to just be.