Life’s Casualties

They have a way of causing one to think about their own life.  It makes people consider or reconsider whether they are living life to the fullest or simply skating thru while making little effort to ever change.

Recently, hubby got some very sad news about a friend.  This friend tragically lost their life.  A spouse has been left alone to raise their children.  These children have lost a parent.  Parents have lost their child.  Siblings have lost a sibling.  Friends have lost a friend.

I have lost all my grandparents.  Hubby lost his father at a very young age.  He lost his mother several years ago.  He lost his step-father (the only father he really knew) a few years later.  Without question, the most difficult loss in our lives was losing our son 6 1/2 years ago.  The numbness of that loss has taken a lot of time to begin to wear off, although I  question whether or not it will completely go away.  His death changed us in so many ways and the impact of losing our son continues to change us.

So when one of us gets tragic news about the death of someone we know, especially someone gone way too young, it stops us in our tracks.  It makes us re-evaluate our lives.  It causes us to seriously question if we are living our most authentic life or if we’re simply skating thru.

Life’s casualties shake our world and our world has been shaken.  The question now is, what we do from here?  Do you go backwards or continue to move forward?  Do we change direction or stay the course?  Do we give up or keep fighting?  Do we crumble or stay strong?

Loss is certainly not easy.  Unfortunately, it is a reality of life and in this loss we reflect on our own life and what is truly important.

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As much as we may want to, we can’t change what has happened but . .

We can learn to love more deeply.

We can strive to appreciate the life we have.

We can make different choices to change our future and make this world a better place.

We can live our most authentic life.

We can be the change we wish to see in the world (Gandhi).

 

 

November 3, 1985

They had known each other for years as friends, good friends in fact, but his enlistment in the Army meant they were parting ways.  Her life going one direction as a soon to be single mom and his life going another as a solider.

Two years later and things so much different then before, he returned home on leave.  It was during this leave that they reconnected.  No expectations, just two old friends catching up on where life had taken them.  Yet somehow during their short time together,  their  friendship blossomed and became more than either of them expected or had imagined.

He returned to his overseas Army base and her life as a single working mom continued. However, distance could not keep them apart. For 10 long months they wrote letters to each other, talked on the phone and began to learn and  understand each other in ways they never had before. Their friendship grew stronger and a new love emerged.

For 10 months they lived with an ocean between them, but that ocean would do nothing more than bring them closer together.

Finally, the day came when he was able to return to the states.  His time overseas complete and for both of them, a new life about to begin.  They committed their lives to each other and became husband and wife.

Their marriage began without the acceptance and support of some of their closest friends and family.   While sad that others could not accept their relationship, they forged ahead knowing that their love and commitment would withstand all the challenges along the way.

Together they faced all the ups and downs of raising a son with autism and watching all 3 of their boys grow to adulthood.  They stood side-by-side at the graveside of his mom and years later his dad.  At a time when many of their friends were sending kids off to college and welcoming grandchildren into their lives, they made the decision to add two beautiful little girls to their family thru adoption.  A few short weeks after bringing home their second daughter, they found themselves living a parents worst nightmare as they  said good-bye and buried their youngest son. They held on to each other tight knowing that the strength of their love would get them thru.

That young couple, so happy and excited to begin their new lives together so long ago, have ridden the waves of life and now celebrate 28 years of marriage.

David Weeks, I am grateful and so very happy that I have spent the last 28 years of my life building a home, family, and life with you. You are my best friend and I thank you for walking this journey of life with me.

I am excited to see where life takes us and know that with you standing beside me, we will continue to tackle any challenge life throws our way.

Forever and always, you are still the only one for me !!

 

Our anniversary song.

4? Seriously?

In November, 2009 we received these pictures of the baby girl who would soon become our daughter.

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Seriously, how can my baby be 4 years old already?  Yet we celebrated this beautiful, energetic, chatty, creative, fun, exuberant, dramatic and loving little girl’s 4th birthday yesterday.

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Naomi, our life certainly wouldn’t be complete without you!!  Happy Birthday!!!!

18 Months Later

We are connected,
My child and I, by
An invisible cord
Not seen by the eye.

It’s not like the cord
That connects us ’til birth
This cord can’t been seen
By any on Earth.

This cord does its work
Right from the start.
It binds us together
Attached to my heart.

I know that it’s there
Though no one can see
The invisible cord
From my child to me.

The strength of this cord
Is hard to describe.
It can’t be destroyed
It can’t be denied.

It’s stronger than any cord
Man could create
It withstands the test
Can hold any weight.

And though you are gone,
Though you’re not here with me,
The cord is still there
But no one can see.

It pulls at my heart
I am bruised…I am sore,
But this cord is my lifeline
As never before.

I am thankful the cord
Connects us this way
A mother and child
Death can’t take it away!

Author Unknown

Date Night

For the first time since Naomi came home, Dave and I went on a date.  Yes, I mean a real date.  No kids, went out to dinner and had Indian food, then off to see a movie – “Tower Heist.”  Things are certainly different for us now.  Twenty-six years ago we could keep going until well after midnight, but now we are home shortly after 10:00 and want nothing more than a good night’s sleep 🙂

Nighty-night!!

November 3, 1985 = 26 Years

They had been friends for years and in December, 1984 their friendship blossomed into something more.  Their long distance relationship – him in Germany, her in Illinois – gave them the unique opportunity to truly get to know each other.  Their friendship and love only grew stronger and on November 3, 1985 she walked down the aisle, put her hand in his and they said ‘I will’ – I will always love you; I will always take care of you; I will be there for you no matter what life throws our way.

For 26 years they have loved each other.  For 26 years they have taken care of each other.   And in 26 years, life has thrown just about everything at them and they have endured – raising a son with autism, the death of another son, moves, the adoption of two children with a third in their future, the death of grandparents and parents, job changes, financial ups and downs – more than many marriages could survive.

They had family and friends who did not support their decision to marry.  Family and friends who didn’t think it would last, but after 26 years they are as committed to their vows as they ever were.

Thank you David for 26 years of love, friendship and dedication.  There are not words to describe the love and respect I have for you as a husband, a father and a man.  There is no one else I would rather travel through life with than you.

I’m quite sure this song was written especially for us because we have certainly made it and will continue to make it.  Youre still the one!