Saying hello and goodbye to my nephew, Sammy in August is creating a very mixed emotion when it comes to the closure of 2012. I want to hold on to the year that made me an auntie for the third time. I want to squeeze as much as I can out of the year that allowed me to feel an insane amount of joy as I held my sweet Sammy. I want to hit pause on the year that brought us together as a family celebrating the life of my nephew. In that same breath, I can't wait to flip the calendar on a year that made my heart hurt like I've never experienced before. Sayanara to the year with such a cruel twist and a punch to the gut of this family. I'm looking forward to another year under my belt and possibly another year of healing but never EVER forgetting.
Most mornings I trudge downstairs and start the coffee first thing. I look out the kitchen window over the sink and although there's no wind and nothing else is moving, I watch the toddler swing on the swingset go back and forth. I choose to believe it's Sammy saying 'good morning auntie Netty.' I guess it doesn't matter what year it is...I'll continue to look for his spirit and feel his soul.
So whether 2012 was fabulous, great, good, mediocre or a mess...here's to still standing!
I was told that when I became a mom...I would wear my heart on the outside of my chest for the rest of my life. That's never been more the case as it was Friday and continues to be today. The shootings in Connecticut are a harsh reminder that nothing in life is guaranteed. I, like most went home Friday and grabbed my son and held him and kissed him as he squiggled to get out from my arms and get back to reading his books. I can't even begin to imagine how these families are feeling. And as a sister, daughter and niece to teachers, I've never been more proud of them...the stories that are surfacing describing the strength, love and selfless bravery of the teachers and staff are amazing yet completely believable...these afterall, are people who have dedicated their lives to children; yours, mine and theirs.
I think it's human nature to try and figure out a solution for the problem, it's what we do. There are so many things that are swirling around in my head about what went wrong; what happened to this boy that made his snap. And not just this shooting, but in a stellar year of evil...the movie theater, the spa, the church. And I keep coming back to the brain...if you have thoughts of killing people, you need help. NAMI - the National Alliance of Mental Illness, needs to get on the horn right now and start working with our politicians. Mental Illness is something that people hide and are ashamed about. It's many times considered make believe or made up and usually help isn't covered by insurance. We also need to be informed about what mental illness entails. And there needs to be a clear path of how to report it or how to get help. It's not something to be ashamed about and it's very real...these shootings are definitely proof of that.
Meanwhile, as politicians and loudmouths alike begin to battle it out, I ask you to do this. Be kind...to your spouse, to your coworker, to the person behind you at the grocery store line, to that person who five years ago did you wrong and you're still carrying a grudge. When we start noticing each other and not assuming, we can actually make a difference. It's an attempt at being proactive because I think we've proven over and over that being reactive doesn't work.
I picture the first-graders little wrists and sweet faces. I can see their size 6 shirts that they purposefully picked to wear that day and I can hear their giggles like only a first-grader can as someone burps in the hallway. My heart hurts and yes...I finally get it, it's definitely being worn on the outside of my chest. God bless, sweet angels.
A year ago at 5:30 tonight...I was alone at my house. My husband, Marc had taken the dogs to the Wisconsin River for some much needed exercise and I was enjoying some time to myself. But that ended quickly when my water broke a month before Mr Everett was supposed to make his grand entrance. I got a text from Marc asking if I had eaten dinner...if not, he'd grab something for us on the way home. I don't know why I thought it was appropriate but I text him back...'ummmmm...my water just broke.' About a milisecond later my phone rang and I don't remember what Marc was saying only that he was breathing hard into the phone out of excitement and nervousness. He got home quickly and packed the bags to head to the hospital. My mind was racing...We may be spending Christmas in the NICU. I don't have any premie clothes. The thoughts were endless. We got all checked into the hospital...it was great to hear his very healthy heartbeat. Just then I thought it was VERY important to get Everett a Christmas stocking since he was now going to be here for Christmas, so Marc ordered one online without flilnching, bless his heart...he had to think I was crazy.
At 10:38am, 12/12/11, Everett Bradley DeCarli was born and stole my heart. I've never been so humbled by anything in my life. What an honor to be his mommy.
Tomorrow the birthday boy will get his first big boy haircut. And not a moment too soon because he's bringing back the mullet as of a couple weeks ago. :)
Thirteen years ago today the world was graced with one of the most spectacular young women I know...my Godaughter, Reagan Marie Clark. I remember heading out to Colorado for her baptism and crying the entire flight back because this little girl was just so precious. She's even more fantastic than I could've ever imagined. Not to mention smart, funny, independent, sweet, fearless, caring, determined and beautfiul. Happy birthday sweetheart. I love you! (and your gift will be on its way later this week...promise.) :)