Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Year of Thanksgiving

Looking back, 2012 has been a year of hell.  Without a doubt, 2012 has been brutal.  There never been a harder year that I've lived through.  And the same goes for Heather.

But when I look back, I don't just see the misery - I see what could have been.  And how close to true disaster we were.

In the last year we've struggled with....

I may look innocent, but I'm just waiting until your least expect it...
Many of these we've shared here on Faith Feet & Love.

But as I said, looking back, I don't really see those problems.  That's not to say that I don't remember them.  Trust me, when your kid projectile vomits on you 3 times in one week, you don't forget!  Instead, I find myself grateful that even though we've flirted with disaster far too many times, it has given me a deeper appreciation for the wonderful things we have experienced.

For me six things stand out when I think of 2012:

The moment when Eli smiled at me for the first time.  It was at about 3:00 in the morning, and he needed to be changed.  As I laid him on the changing table, I remember him distinctly looking at me, smiling ever so slightly (one of his first smiles by the way) and sticking his tongue out at me.  (Which was a game we used to play until he was about 3 months old.)

Playing "catch" for the first time.  Okay, so he didn't really catch.  But he knew enough to throw a toy back and forth to me.

Eli's love of games.  I've never seen a kid who loves to play as many games or who loves his toys more than Eli.  No matter how miserable he's feeling, he's always up for some kind of playing.  (Even if Daddy has to carry him while he plays.)

Why limit yourself to what you can carry, when you have a mouth.
His love of cars.  I don't know where he gets it, certainly not from me.  But this kid loves to watch cars.  The bigger and louder, the better.  And if it has a lot of lights, that's just extra winning.  We thought buying a house on a busy road would be a drawback, but it's saved us through the last few months of constant illness.  No matter how sick Eli is, he always makes time to watch cars.  Even at 4 AM.

Eli's work ethic.  No one works harder than this kid.  No one.  He doesn't know what it means to give up, whether that's learning to crawl, or learning to live with casts on his legs. 

Isabel showing off the one-shoulder backpack look of "older kids"
Of course it's not just Eli we're thankful for.  Our daughter has had an up and down year as well.  At times she's struggled with school.  But other times she's been a leader to her friends.  And while she had her own rough start to 2012, she's really become an amazing kid.  With a hilarious sense of humor, and a new-found love of all things Harry Potter, she's slowly growing up.

Okay, she's actually growing up entirely too fast!  But that is a post for another day...

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