“Come on girls!” I call cheerfully, “We need to get out of the house!”
It’s a Saturday night and the girls and I have been home all day while Ryan is at the hospital working late.
Evee and Kaya look up from my phone that they have been playing on for far too long…their little heads smooshed together trying to see the tiny screen…makes me chuckle.
“Where are we going to go Mama?” Evee asks, as she stretches her arms high over her head.
“I’m not sure yet…just out” I reply, as I hand both girls their shoes.
“Yes!” Kaya smiles, “Can we go shopping?”
“Hmm…maybe let’s just go get a treat…how about we go and get a few Frosties?” I counter.
Both girls jump up and down clapping their hands.
We crawl into the truck, buckle our seatbelts, and begin our spontaneous adventure.
“Turn it up Mama,” Evee pleads “I can’t hear it.”
Evee loves listening to the radio. I turn up Katie Perry’s song, “Roar” and Evee starts wiggling and dancing in her booster seat.
Oh how I love the two little girls in my rear view mirror. My life is so much better with them in it.
Soon after arriving at Wendy’s we pull up to the drive up window to make our order.
“I’ll have one small vanilla Frosty and…” I turn around to look at the girls, “let me guess two chocolate kiddie Frosties?”
“Yes!” Kaya shouts.
“Wait…I want the same thing as you Mama…I want a bailla one,” Evee states in a matter of fact way.
The way Evee says ‘Vanilla’ warms my heart and I instantly smile.
“Well ok…make that two vanilla Frosties and one chocolate Frosty,” I tell the person taking our order.
“I guess someone is being brave and trying something new,” I tease Evee.
She smiles and replies, “I just want the same thing as you…it looks yummy!”
“Haha, well you’re going to love it! Vanilla Frosty’s are the best. You may never want chocolate again!”
This month marks another year of new beginnings. On Sunday afternoon, August 23rd 2015, we lost two amazing individuals. Our family was forever changed. This last year has been a blur. There are still moments… almost a year later… when I don’t believe my babies are gone. I have had so many moments catch me off guard and I’m left wondering, “How did I get here?” Usually my heart stings with pain at the thought of losing two of my most loved family members.
How did I get where I am today? And where am I going…
I am where I am today because of people…the kind of people who show me what is important in life.
I was born into a pretty amazing family. My parents taught me right from wrong. They taught me to love others and be kind. My brother and sister taught me to laugh, to have fun, and to forgive. I have friends who have watched me grow and have stuck with me through both thick and thin. I have the most wonderful in-laws who continue to love and take care of Kaya and I. I have my Ry Ry…who taught me to be passionate and pursue my ambitions. I have two sweet little girls who showed me how to be a mom. Who love me no matter what. Who teach me patience and long-suffering. I am grateful for where I am….although it may not be what I expected for myself.
This year I have been stretched far beyond what I thought possible. I have felt despair…pain…heartbreak…joy…peace…and comfort. Ryan and Evee’s passing has made me realize that the things I once thought were important…maybe don’t matter as much. Family matters. Kindess matters. Service matters. Love matters. Choosing bitterness over peace and love…hurts only you. Choosing to be angry with circumstance, robs you of true joy. I pray every day that I’ll be slow to anger and quick to forgive….that I’ll choose meekness…that I’ll choose Christ.
I live my life with a different perspective now…
I look forward to the future and to where I’m going…
I don’t know a lot of things. I don’t know what jobs are in store or what other callings I’ll have in life. I’m not sure if life holds more tragedy and heartache or more joy and happiness beyond comprehension….
But I do know this….
That I’m going in heaven’s direction. I’m going to look to the sun and ride on angel’s wings. I’m going to keep striving to do what I know is right and true. I’m slowly being smoothed and refined. Things may be rough now…but the joys and treasures waiting in the eternities are far more beautiful than I can imagine.
I was thinking about the new school year coming up and the still wonderful and exciting things that await us. Kaya turns 8!! She starts 3rd grade and has chosen to be baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She’ll be in her 4th year of dance! She’s becoming quite the little artist and she’s always learning and growing in some way.
This year I turn 30!! This year Ryan and I celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary! This year we get to travel to places I’ve only dreamt of. This year is another year of self -discovery and learning just what I’m capable of.
This is a year of new beginnings.
This year I’m going to think of Evee and ‘bailla’ ice-cream. Going from chocolate to vanilla ice-cream was new for her…and although she still loved chocolate…she discovered that ‘new’ or ‘different’ can still be delicious. Evee loved ‘bailla’ Frosties. I miss Ryan and Evee more than I can describe…but I know that they would want us to continue to live life to the fullest.
So with them by our sides we are going to do just that…live!! Each of our lives have great potential…but it’s up to us to be brave and to choose to try that new flavor of ice-cream. There are so many different ‘flavors’ or ‘experiences’ waiting to be tasted. Sure it’s ok to be content with just chocolate…but think of the new glorious possibilities that can be ours…when we but make the choice.
Why not try some of these flavors…
Choose goodness. Choose love. Choose forgiveness. Choose family. Choose meekness. Choose happiness. Choose courage. Choose Christ…because after all he did already choose you…