"My life is different because of . . ."
Even though I am posting this early, I think I'll make it the form of a Thursday Thirteen. AND maybe a Works Of God Weekend post as well. Because the more I tried to pin down just ONE thing that has changed my life, the more it dawned on me that there are myriad reasons I am the person I am today.
Here's just a few...
My Life is Different Because of...
1) My oldest child, #1. So brave and willing to stand up for the underdog, yet such a tender heart. When his sister came to tell him what had happened to her, he didn't hesitate to report and I so grateful he did. Even though it changed our lives forever. From my amazing son, I learned to always stand up for what's right no matter what the cost.
2) My number 2. She has endured pain far beyond her years with her heart defect at birth and the abuse she suffered. Yet she is not afraid to love. Animals are her special passion and she has planned how many horses, cows, dogs, cats, frogs, rabbits, etc (ad infinitum) that she will keep on her farm when she grows up. Oh, and I get to live there, too. :D This mischief making girl has taught me to sleep with one eye open, yet not be afraid to love.
3) Number 3 is my free spirit. So amazingly uncaring about what others think of her, she is an incredible tom-boy. Short hair with highlights that came out orange, wild clothes - even wearing them backwards TO SCHOOL just because she wants to, most of her friends are boys and she has been known to fill entire spiral notebooks of her art and prose. She has opened my eyes to the fact the one can be happy and have peace yet not conform to the constraints of "society".
4) Number four makes me laugh everyday. The twinkle in her eyes and the silly little off-the-wall comments remind me to "lighten up"!
5) My gastric bypass has changed my life 180 degrees. Everyday I am reminded of the things I couldn't do before. Like yesterday...went to the eye doctor and realized I could actually FIT into the chair with the arms up! wooHOO!
6) My college scholarships have allowed me to attend college full time without having to work, too. Amazing impact on my life...
7) My midwife friend who has taken me on as an assistant. She didn't have to accept me...she has two other assistants. She doesn't have to help me with gas or teach me the lab procedures. She didn't have to be my friend...but she chose me and I am eternally grateful.
8) My first husband taught me how to hunt and fish and to know that I could survive without electricity and the other common amenities of life.
9) My second husband taught me that you can live with someone for many many many years and truly never know them. He also taught me that you should never just automatically assume that people know you love them. Tell them everyday.
10) Coffee! My life is different because of coffee...I am so grateful for that black, aromatic liquid that feels like a warm hug from the inside.
11) My life is different because of the amazing example my parents and grandparents set in their marriages and in their lives. Once I chose to see it, as an adult, I realized that truly they were NOT the perfect people I thought they were as a child. They make mistakes; sometimes they don't get along. But they have made a commitment that will not be broken.
12) MG has changed my life by telling me over and over how beautiful, smart and sexy I am at a time in my life when my self-esteem was in the toilet and the only thing that exceeded my guilt was my fear. He has made it his fulltime job to cheer me on; to make me see that I am not that bad after all.
13) My life is different because of my Heavenly Father. I know that He will always be there, no matter what horrible stuff happens. If I need something that seems impossible to me, He will either provide or show me how I can live without it.
My life is also different because of this blog, my blog-friends, my real-life friends, and a deep appreciation of the beauty of this world we've been given. I am amazed and blessed everyday that God created so many different shades of orange and red to make the fall trees so incredibly beautiful.
Yes, my life is different and it seems strange to ponder where I might be today if any one of these factors had not come into my life.