Seizure free for one year!!!

Memories of the past three years float around in my mind. As I sort through the trying and sunny times, it’s almost impossible to put all my feelings into words.

There is heartache for the loved ones I’ve lost along the way. There is fright and frustration for the storms I’ve had to face.

There is embarrassment for all the silly things I’ve managed to do. There is love and gratitude for the kindness and encouragement my family and friends have given me.

There is a sense of accomplishment for sticking it through. And there are fuzzy, warm motions stirring inside today, and I can’t help but smile.

It’s hard to believe that 365 days have come and gone, but the day is finally here!

Today, there is a purple sunrise, and it simply feels like a dream.

I’m one year seizure free!

Dear Mom,

Mom,
I could tell you that you’re the best friend any girl could ever ask for.
I could tell you that you’re the kindest person in the entire world.
I could tell you that you’re the strongest and loveliest person I know.

I could tell you all these things, but I’d only be saying what you already know.
Instead, I’ll tell you all the non-mushy things I’ve never said before.

Mom,
You’re the most stubborn person I know. You simply won’t stop to rest.
You’re beyond scary. Those “What did you say?” eyes will always haunt me.
You’re a master lie detector. You’re the reason why I’m such a bad liar.

You’re crazy, weird and funny. You’re simply one of a kind.
You’re the wonderful woman I’ll always aspire to be.
Mom, I love you, and I hope you have a great birthday!
 

This is for you, the one I never got to meet.

I could see your bright smile long before I ever saw your face.

I could hear your cries and sobs because you needed a diaper change.

I could feel your warm hugs when you needed my comforting embrace.

I could imagine all the memories we’d create through the years.

I could picture you reaching all your milestones.

I could. I could. But I didn’t get to.

I love you even though I never got to meet you, and I always will.

I’ll tell those that come after you how special you are to me.

A piece of you will always be in my heart, and I will never forget you.

When I give my last breath, we will finally meet.

In paradise, I promise to make up for all lost time.

I will hold you, make you smile and laugh.

Because that’s what mommies are supposed to do.

I wish I could say life is a bed of roses without thorns, but this would be a lie. My older sister was in her second trimester when she lost her twin daughters. My friend was just five weeks pregnant when she had her first miscarriage.

Besides being a mom to a kid with four paws, I have no children of my own. I’ve never experienced life growing in my womb, but I still feel a sense of loss. I can imagine my two eight-year-old nieces pleading for me to make them another tea party. I can picture their poor drawn color penciled Happy Birthday and Valentines Day cards, which would say I was their greatest aunt, or maybe even their best friend. Those cards would mean the world to me more than any beautifully crafted Hallmark card.

For all the moms who’ve lived this nightmare, I cannot say that I know what you are going through. I cannot say that I know exactly how it feels, but I do know that you aren’t alone. The world might feel a little more broken, but your family and friends are there to help you through it all.

Life is a bed of roses filled with painful thorns, but it’s still beautiful. Roses are wonderful, and need someone to tend to them. Let those who love you be your gardeners to help put yourself back together again.

Monday Reflections: Remembering Christmas

christmas tree

This time last year, it was a little over two weeks since I had left the hospital. My body was weak, and my meds kept me asleep rather than awake. I was too tired to do anything, and when I managed to stay up, it was difficult to concentrate. I can’t recall much of the 2013 holiday season, although I really try to.

As I think about this Christmas, a smile forms across my face. This year, I can and will remember everything!

So what happened this Christmas?

Family and friends gathered at my parents’ house. Lights covered entire rooms, poinsettias topped every table and wreaths adorned each door. Dead center in the living area, the colorful christmas tree glowed, and underneath lay a pile of presents. Next to the presents, were my little nieces eager to open them up.

Chatter could be heard around the house, including the laughter brought on by my father’s jokes. The Chef Masters, my mother and older sister, worked away in the kitchen. Their cooking filled the air with sweet, savory aromas. Dinner was nothing short of amazing!

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been the family’s Christmas elf. Organizing and making sure the right present was handed to the right person has always been my responsibility. I love this, and I look forward to entertaining everyone as I go around the room every year. My health had prevented me from passing out presents last year, but it never will again! I am and will always be the Christmas elf!

Today I reflect on the joy the holidays bring and how wonderful it is to spend it with the ones you love.

This year has been wonderful, and I continue to receive the best gift of all. I’ve had the love and support of my family and friends all these years. No matter how hard the travel or how scary this year may have seemed, they have always been on my Fighting Epilepsy team. Having them here is the best present I could ever receive.

 

Monday Reflections: Life and Death

Red

Life begins with an inhale and ends with an exhale, and at both moments, tears are shed. Happy tears welcome the newborn baby. Melancholy tears bid a loved one farewell. While we look forward to the former and dread the coming of the latter, we can’t deny that both hold lovely memories.

The beginning brings out hope in the gloomiest of places. The smile on a baby’s face shows us a future full of dreams and laughter. The conclusion offers a sense of reflection where we realize how our strength through pain isn’t all that miserable, but rewarding.

From the start to the finish, there is beauty throughout. Love is the glue for the happy and the sad. One without the other, simply wouldn’t work. Things don’t always turn out as expected, but love remains the same. In that love, we can find happiness despite anything.

I can’t deny that it deeply hurts when those we love come to pass. As I write this, I remember the pearlized, pink coffin. Surrounded by calla lilies and red roses, she looked lovely dressed in her favorite red, silk dress. I see her pleasant smile and porcelain doll reflection. I miss her now and forever will, but I will never forget her. My love for her then and now remains the same. It is my love, which will keep her memories alive.

We inhale and exhale. We are young and get old. Life is meant to have a beginning and an end, and today I reflect on that.

 

Finding Strength in Sadness

heart sketch

My heart is heavy.
There’s a lump in my throat.

I’m trying to stay steady.
I’m trying to stay afloat.

Why did this happen?
This just isn’t right.

This is hard to imagine
But I need to come to light.

This fight isn’t over.
I won’t let you down.

I’ll regain my composure.
And together we’ll be strong.