I started out writing a shout out on facebook and then realized that I had too much to say for that (a regular problem for this verbose once English/speech/drama teacher!) So I came over here to talk about the last couple of weeks and the incredible people in my life.
First let me start by saying that for the most part, genetics have been a blessing to me. My family does not have a significant history of heart disease or cancer or many of the other hardships that plague other family trees. I do have the aggravations of acne and gray hair (thanks, Dad) and a really weird pinky toenail (thanks, Mom), but overall, my genetic code has been healthy....except for my back. That lovely morsel of a problem is passed down to me by my otherwise quite extraordinary mom.
So, with my crazy schedule this Spring (it's hard to transition from being a stay at home mom to more of a working mom--even if it isn't totally full time!), my back decided to throw an internal temper tantrum. "So, you're not going to stop going to bed so late and feeling overwhelmed with all there is to do," I can hear it say, "Then, watch what I can do!" As a result, last, last Sunday night, it went out. Now, after 5 days it was a lot better. I returned to my crazy pace (I really didn't feel like I had much of a choice), and voila! Several days later it really threw a fit. So, now it's 4 days later and I'm still struggling BIG TIME.
And here is where the amazing people in my life come in. On Thursday (at the height of the pain) I had my absolute busiest day. I mean really busy. Sick kiddo. Leave the house by 9:00 am to take the two other kids to Jenna's for babysitting. Get my hair cut and colored (thanks, Living Social) at a nice salon 45 minutes away from Jenna's. Almost 3 hours later, drive back home where I lay down desperately on the couch. Kole, precious boy that he is, heats up lasagna, bread sticks, gets me my water bottle, and serves it all up on a tray while I lay with an ice pack on my back. Then, Jenna shows up after graciously offering to bring the kids all the way home, with an iced mocha in hand. Just as she shows up, my sis shows up to watch the kids while I go to work (her normal Thursday routine). She will also be cooking dinner and taking the kids to tae kwon do (all FOUR kids). Then, Karl and I get home about 6:30 where dinner is basically on the table complete with freshly baked bread and we sit down to eat. Afterwards, Karl and Alyssa clean up the kitchen and Karl does the bedtime routine.
The next day I'm as bad as ever. So, I decide to have a try-to-be-guilt-free day with Owen, Selah, and Kole (still claiming to be sick, but now no fever) watching lots of media. During this time my Dad goes to "Special Person" day at Braden's school and spoils him as usual, calling me afterwards to tell me how wonderful he is. Meanwhile, back home, my friend Anjanette calls to see how I'm doing. An hour or so after offering to help with the kids and me rejecting the idea, she texts to say she will be there to pick up all 4 kids (did I mention she has 4 as well?!?) for the afternoon and evening...and maybe the night (Karl's going to be gone for the annual and much-anticipated fantasy baseball draft :) ). She ends up keeping them all. night. long.
The next morning I leave early for an all-day bridal shower event in Ohio with Mom driving as I lay in the back. It was a wonderful day of female companionship and love with some of my favorite people, including Aunt Heidi, Grandma Betty, sis-in-law Erica (who's sis is marrying my cousin :) ), cousin Amy from PA, Aunt Cathy, cousin Jen....and much more. I was mothered well as I figured I would be as we sat around (I laid) and talked.
When I got home, Karl had gone with all 4 kids to get me a beautiful bouquet of flowers complete with homemade cards from the boys thanking me for working so hard, even with a bad back.
Seriously, it is practically impossible, even in the midst of significant pain, to not look at these last 2 weeks and not feel the incredible love of family and friends. What a blessing relationships can be! I would love to hear about some of the incredible gifts of relationship you all have. Feel free to share and pass the blessing along. In this jaded and hard world, I think it's so important to remember those sunny things that keep us going. I know I sure need to!