I work in a cardiac ICU, I see mothers, and fathers die, brother, sisters, husbands and wives. I watch as children have to tell their parents goodbye, I see parents have to tell their children goodbye- and had I not had to hold my Conor and kiss his forehead and tell him to be with God I wouldn't understand how to be the nurse they need during that time. I wouldn't know how to find that compassion, that understanding. I stand holding loved ones hands, I hug them and I cry with them- and then I come home to my perfect family. To the loves of my lives and still find myself searching....
I read daily on social media that a friend or even a complete stranger is dealing with death of a loved one, or is standing strong facing illness themselves. And here I am in my house healthy, with my son- who, yes, has cerebral palsy but is alive and actually pretty healthy comparatively... And I'm wanting more...
I am truly way more blessed than I accept on a daily basis. I live in a beautiful love story, and only in the past few days have I began to try and be as thankful as I can be for it! I once wrote in my blog for prayers, for God to grant us with the privilege of being parents to Blake, and begged for the honor of being his mom and watching him grow. I remember asking for him to bless me with acceptance and understanding if that however was not his choice for us. Then once I got my prayer answered, I forgot to be constantly truly grateful for all the wonderful things God has graced my life with. Don't get me wrong I am thankful everyday for Zach and Blakers and even my crazy dog Aussie- but I forget to actually take a breath, look around me and truly just soak in the wonderfulness that IS my life. I sometimes forget to get off my phone, or out of my head....and just embrace life.
I found the love of my life at the age of 15, he has stood by me through all the angst of growing up. From the overly enthusiastic teenage Katie, to the party goer college Katie, to the "id rather stay home, mom" Katie. As I think of our love story it is what movies are made of... Boy meets girl, girl meets boy- they date- they have trials and they overcome them to end up in marital bliss.... But ours continues after the movie ends... And our true love story only blossomed more when we brought children into our love story. That is what makes our story even stronger and more romantic than any title you can imagine in your head. Our story didn't have the typical happy new parents beginning, it had loss and fear tangled into it. But the romance in it is the way we held on to each other despite the stress, despite the loss, the anger and the depression.
I remember one day I was outside, I had wanted some fresh air, and Zach came outside to check on me....he held my hand on the bench outside the women's hospital. And as I sat there, zombie eyed, in disbelief, without words only a day after we had just lost our son, he knew we didn't need to talk, we just needed to sit there with the sun hitting our backs as we held each other's hands. It's these moments I find truly romantic.
The romance in our love story, isn't always story telling- it is filled with boring laying on the couch listening to a new music album while snuggling, it's laughing uncontrollably over some stupid 90's movie that I'm still not sure is "the best movie ever", and our romance even involves the days I lose control of my emotions and just cry into zach's shoulder as he holds me close.
The day my love story surpassed "Notebook" worthy romance was the day we brought Blakers home. The day we were blessed to have this child by our side was the day I should have stopped looking for the greener side and realized I'd reached it. I was standing in it.
I want to cherish all the times that blake will grab my face just to turn it to look straight into his eyes- just so he can show me what he is finding so funny. I want to remember the sound of his laugh when I come home from a long 12 hours shift. I want to remember the way he points to his daddy when Zach walks in the room and then just smiles ear to ear.
Yesterday was a prime example of just taking a deep breath and instead of getting frustrated just enjoying the moment. And it turned out to be one of my favorite days. Blake was a complete fuss butt yesterday, he cut his therapy session short because he would not stop throwing a tantrum- he was just not having it. And then when I took him to school at 12, it wasn't even 5 minutes after getting home that the school nurse called saying he was inconsolable. So I calmly made the decision to just go ahead and go back into to town and get him. I knew Blake wasn't sick, he wasn't hurting, and that had I just said you know I really think he should try to power through the day- he could have probably stayed and finished the school day out.... But this was what I prayed for. I prayed constantly in the NICU to be his mother, to be his rock, to be able to spend time with him...AND, so I picked him up. As soon as he saw me his tears were gone, he smiled ear to ear and we left. We came home, and Blake was not sick. And Blake was not hurting. And Blake and I had one of the best mommy and Blakers day we've had in a while. We danced, we played and we snuggled. And for that I am thankful, and my grass just keeps getting brighter green!
Sometimes you just need to take a moment and close your eyes... Cherish your love story, because you never know how green your grass is compared to someone else.
From my family to yours remember to fall in love with the everyday love stories!