Monday, October 17, 2011

Fall Break 2011

Our Fall Break this year was not at all what I had envisioned, but it couldn't have been any more perfect!! I originally wanted to take the boys to the Zoo, the Adventure Science Center, and some other fun activities, but due to my injured foot and Brody having a little fever on Tuesday, we ended up spending all week at home. It was wonderful!! We played games, painted, colored, tie dyed T-shirts for the first time, decorated our front door for Halloween, watched movies, and cuddled a lot!!! It was a great break to our hectic daily schedules!

On Thursday night, we met the Richardsons for dinner and bowling. I was happy to do something special and fun as a family with some great friends!

On Saturday, we decided to take a road trip to visit some family in Cookeville. Randy and Myra invited us to come watch their youngest, Cole, in the Junior Rodeo. Brody and Colby loved it!! They rode a pony, rode a plastic bull, practiced roping, and even raced in a stick horse race. When the rodeo was over, we went to Randy and Myra's house for a delicious dinner and lots of fun! The boys rode the pony again, fed a bottle to a calf, and drove 4-wheelers. The 4-wheeler was definitely Brody's favorite part of the day. I am so happy we were able to do something new, fun, and memorable!! It was a great day!!

Friday, October 14, 2011

An Amazing Poem

I was reading another heart blog this morning and saw this great poem! I can't believe I have never read this before. It does a great job of describing the feelings I have experienced since hearing Colby's diagnosis.

byEmily Perl Kingsley.

c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

I absolutely love this poem!! I am glad that I am able to thank God for going to Holland now! If not for Holland, I would have never experienced the past 3 wonderful years with Colby! I would have never met so many amazing heart families. I would have never made such great friends at the hospital. I would have never learned so much medical terminology. I might never have appreciated the little things in life so much. I might have never gained the amount of strength that I have gained...emotionally, physically, mentally. Jason and my relationship might not be as strong as it is now. Brody might not be the amazing kid that he is. I could go on and on and on.

Basically, without experiencing the initial heartache of going to Holland instead of Italy, I would not be who I am today and our family would not be as it is today. I cannot imagine our lives without Colby. His half of a heart makes our family whole!!! Thank you God for sending our family to Holland and for guiding us during the times we were lost!


After weeks of Brody going back and forth between wanting his hair cut or keeping it long, he finally made up his mind last weekend...he wanted it cut! We went to the salon with him saying he wanted all his hair shaved off. I wasn't really ready for him to have a bald head, so we compromised. Colby knew exactly what he wanted too. As soon as he got in the chair, he told her, "I want spiky hair." I guess it is good that they know what they want!

Colby loves his faux hawk!

The first cut...bye bye long hair!!

Look at all of that hair!!!

A happy boy with his new haircut!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

"The Man Ride"

This past weekend, Jason and a great group of guys that share his love for riding did their first annual "Man Ride." One of the guys, also named Jason, did a great job of planning and getting this ride together. They drove to Tupelo on Thursday afternoon, and then the 2 day ride began Friday morning. They rode their bikes on the Natchez Trace from Tupelo to the Tin Roof 2 Restaurant in Franklin, which is over 200 miles!! The riders' families, including the boys and I, met them at the restaurant to celebrate the completion of this first ride. They are already making plans for next year's ride. I am glad Jason got the opportunity to do this. He had a lot of fun, and I am sure he made a lot of great memories!

They made it!!!

The boys were so excited to see daddy! They really missed him!

This was the completion of the first victory lap around Tin Roof 2...they then did another lap! You would think they would be ready to stop after riding 100 miles that day, but apparently they weren't!

These boys were so happy to get a hug from daddy!

Alicia and Kyle...I've known Alicia since I was about 10! We took dance together for years, and she was even in our wedding! Kyle and Jason met in the last couple of years, and they just happen to share a love for riding. It is crazy how small the world really is!

David and Maggie...this is the couple that just got married in Charleston the weekend before!