This year is coming to a close, just a few short hours remain. As the moments melt away into memories, I
have been reflecting on what 2012 signified to me.
The moments that meant something, the milestones and heart ache and life altering decisions; the changes that shape my future.
This year has been one with many growing pains; we have added another child to our tribe, our home is different, and our relationships have grown and evolved. But I suppose that’s how every year is, full of change I mean, because if it stayed the same life wouldn’t be very interesting. I have no idea what tomorrow or the next day will bring, and I have no idea what I will be doing this time next year, but I trust it will all work out. Things don’t always get better, but change is inevitable. Good or bad, in the end it’s all a chapter in our stories, and every story an adventure. An uneventful life is hardly a fulfilling one. So instead of a New Years resolution for 2013, this year I am simply thankful I survived. I am thankful for our families and friends. I’m thankful for the roof over our heads and the clothes on our backs. I am thankful that I woke up this morning happy and healthy. Hardships make us stronger, an prepare us for whatever comes next. Stronger day by day should always be the goal, no exceptions. Life isn’t perfect, and I won’t pretend it is, but I am grateful for every moment, and pray no matter what the future brings, I never forget who holds the future.
Stronger December 31, 2012
This year is coming to a close, just a few short hours remain. As the moments melt away into memories, I
Family Christmas December 28, 2012
This Christmas was simply beautiful.
I don’t say that because of the mountain of gifts my family was blessed with,
The glimmer of the lights or the shimmer of ornaments.
I say that because the entire day was this surreal, dream like day of laughter and love and enjoying the people who mean the most to me.
No one was fighting.
Nothing else was on my mind at all except just enjoying the moment as it came.
I was blessed with some wonderful gifts this year, but I found myself more excited for my kids.
They are old enough to ask for things and excited for Christmas all on their own,
And their facial expressions are simply priceless, filled with surprise and wonder.
A few days before christmas my six year old Anthony came to me and gave me a giant hug.
“Mommy?” he said with a smile, his giant brown eyes meeting my hazel ones.
“I don’t even really care what I get for Christmas, I will just be grateful for whatever I get.”
I smiled, and felt a little warm and tingly inside.
I am so proud of my children. Every one of them, with all their unique attributes are so precious. Maybe they are just a really good batch of kids, but I like to think at least a small part of who they are comes from what my husband and I have taught and showed them.
Needless to say, my children got everything they wanted and more for christmas.
But it made me feel like such a success that even at such a young age my son understands gratitude.
My dad will be 75 in a few short months.
It amazes me every day how quickly the time has gone by, even in my short 22 years in this world. It seems almost cruel how limited by days with him are, but I am thankful for every one of them.
This year was different, only six of my dads eight kids were present for Christmas. I missed my brothers and their families, and I could see in my dads eyes he was sad the group was so much smaller this year, but I’m grateful the those of us who could be there were. Every year the family grows and changes. Fresh faces seem inevitable with such a large group, but there is truly nothing like the traditions. Opening gifts, biscuits and sausage gravy, a giant turkey dinner and singing Christmas carols in the living room. The jokes and the laughter, the happiness I can even begin to explain. It’s all I have known to be Christmas, and I hope it stays this way for many years to come. There is nothing quite like the familiar, home for the holidays is the only place to be. I love my family so much. New and old faces, the ones I see often and the ones I see almost never, you are all jewels to me I cherish with all of my heart.
Empty Beds December 15, 2012
My heart is truly broken today.
All I can think of are those sweet children, whose blood cries out from the ground.
The world is filled with others who echo my sentiments of grief and devastation.
I can’t even imagine the pain of the families who are now eternally broken, missing a priceless piece that can never be replaced.
I can’t imagine the suffocating grip on their lungs as the words spewed from the other end of that phone; the call that changed their lives forever as news of an unspeakable tragedy spread.
Breathlessly waiting for word, searching for the faces of their little angels in the crowded chaos.
Screaming, crying, and horrendous images flashing before them.
It didn’t seem real.
This cannot be real.
As more time passed, realizing your child had still not been found and praying that perhaps they were hiding, waiting for it to be safe to come out.
The seconds pass by slower and slower, time seems as though it is standing still.
And you suddenly see it: a policeman is approaching you, his head hanging, his eyes brimming with tears.
His word hit you like a train, violent and unforgiving with unimaginable weight; knocking you off your feet.
Your worst nightmare has manifested.
Your baby is gone.
You will never be able to look into their eyes again and see that unconditional love that filled every fiber of their being.
They will never run to you from across the room and call your name with excitement, simply because they missed you.
They will never again wrap their tiny arms around your waist and whisper “I love you.”
They will never be with you again.
You suddenly regret every time you were impatient.
Every single moment you lost your cool, yelled or didn’t have the time for whatever it was that they wanted or needed.
Now you can never take that back.
You are out of time.
There are no more second chances.
There are no more fun days to make up for the nights you couldn’t be home to tuck them in.
No more pajama days and snuggle time.
No more movie nights with popcorn and over sized blankets.
No more bedtime stories or homework help.
Every moment you treasured, and every second you took for granted has been stolen, in the blink of an eye it’s all gone.
Their bed will never be slept in again,
Their toys remain scattered on the floor.
Their Christmas gifts will never be opened from its shiny wrapping.
Every hope and dream you dared hold onto, for the future and your lives and your family, has vanished.
Everything is empty now.
Nothing makes sense.
No amount of comfort can bring back your baby.
No amount of kind words or good deeds can numb the overwhelming and uncontrollable sense of loss.
Their life has not only ended, but your dreams, your reality has died with them.
I grieve for those families.
My eyes brim with tears as empathy overwhelms me for the loss they must be feeling.
Why have these innocent little ones been stolen from this world?
A gunman coming into a school, and slaughtering babies as they wept and screamed and begged.
He killed them as they cried.
He killed them as they pleaded for their mommies and daddies.
Their hearts racing with paralyzing fear.
There was no one to save them.
There was no one who could have stopped him.
Evil manifesting in the purest, most unimaginable form.
School’s are thought of as a safe haven for children,
Their classrooms and friends and teachers are meant to represent stability.
This image of security is now shattered,
As I contemplate sending my little one to school tomorrow,
Nausea and anxiety is all but overwhelming me.
I know there is nothing I can do to control the world around me,
And there is nothing can stop some things like what happened in Newton, Connecticut.
Knowing that doesn’t make me or the rest of the country feel any less violated.
I feel as though we have been ruthlessly raped of any innocence we still possessed.
Every day it seems the news is plagued with images and stories of shootings and violence and death,
Murdering children the same age as my son.
Taking their life without remorse or regard.
Executing the innocent without motive.
I lay next to my husband and breath in his scent,
Listening to the gentle snores of our infant.
Our children are the single most important things in our lives,
Without any one of them my whole world would fall apart.
How do you go on from such a tragedy?
How do you move forward when something so precious has been stolen for good?
I don’t have any answers for you.
I don’t know when it is exactly the families of the victims will be able to go an hour, or a day without weeping.
But five hundred miles from my home, those parents are fighting sleep.
Some of them will be laying their children to rest tomorrow,
Something no parent should ever have to do.
The darkness is all around them, but all they can see is their child’s face.
Their angel’s empty bed is haunting,
There is no rest in sight for their weary souls.
All I can do is pray that God comforts them as they grieve.
All I can do it be grateful I got the gift of one more day as a mommy to my four boys.
Nothing can be taken for granted,
None of us know when it will all end.
None of us know when the world as we knew it today will be forever changed with the mark of evil,
And leave us with empty beds and hearts.
Seasons December 5, 2012
The holiday season is in full swing, and its hard for me to believe its been over three months since my last post.
My hiatus was much needed, although I have missed writing terribly.
Since my last post, as you can all safely assume, we now have a beautiful and healthy three month old boy.
Jeremiah Xavier Guinn was born on August 23rd 2012 at 10:01 pm.
A lengthy and drawn out labor, but of course more than worth it.
My son Anthony has started Kindergarden, Jordan started Preschool.
Devin has learned to say quite a few words, and is a complete fire ball of personality.
Jeremiah is growing like a weed and getting cuter by the minute, if that’s even possible 😉
We have moved, and I now am planning on going to college in January.
So many changes!
This holiday season is so full and intense.
A part of me is looking forward to the whole thing being over and January being here,
But I’m just trying to enjoy the moment in front of me and embrace these wonderful times.
Christmas really is the best when kids are young, and I only have so many years to enjoy their innocence, so I might as well drink in every second I can before it evaporates.
On a positive note, I’m adjusting a lot better to being a parent of four than I thought I would.
All my fears and irrationalities and over-analyzing were just me selling myself a little short.
Don’t get me wrong, its hard.
Parenting is the most challenging thing I have ever done, but I’m doing it.
Somehow, someway, at the end of each day my kids end up safe in their beds and I have yet to be institutionalized. This to me is success.
A small one maybe, but I’m getting through and I know despite the sleepless nights and endless days of chasing after a toddler, keeping up with an infant and my other two little ones we are all going to be okay.
Well, now that we have played catch up, we can pick up where we left off.
I’m very excited to be back on the tablet, and I cannot wait to share the stories of my life with you as these new seasons unfold.