Because really, the thought of going back through the year and picking out my favorite blog posts from each month is too much. This was a hard year. It’s still hard. I can’t look back. There’s too much pain there, and I can’t revisit it.
There were major bright spots. We got Lucky, and that’s been an unqualified positive. This dog is the sweetest, most passive and laid back, cuddliest little creature I’ve ever seen. Getting a dog was such a brilliant idea, and I’m forever grateful for having him, and what’s he’s meant for all three of my kids. And for me – I love this dog.
Each one of my kids grew up a lot this year. Jessie grew up, a lot. She assumed more responsibility than I ever wanted for her, and is the most empathetic, loving and aware teenager I know. She’s grown into this amazing, funny, smart person – and it’s not an exaggeration to say that she’s one of my closest allies. Julianna finished up kindergarten, and bopped into first grade like it was nothing, and has thrived, absolutely thrived in that environment. She lost her brother, on a real level, this year, and is slowly, slowly getting him back. She’s learned more than I ever wanted to about how to support someone you love when their world is crumbling, and I’m so proud of her.
My Sammy – I don’t have words to describe what he’s been thru this year. He’s lost almost everything, and been thru unimaginable trauma and fear. Even now, seven months later, his life is incredibly different from it was before. He’s staggered me, over and over again, with how strong and brave and resilient he is. He handles it – whatever it is. Whether it’s the loss of vision, not being able to see the board games, or the television or the computer games he used to love, the loss of his taste buds, not being able to just grab some cereal or enjoy Halloween candy or his chocolate advent calendar my mother gets every year, or the very real loss of the ability to walk thru the doors of his school – he’s found a way to take the incredibly difficult and make it okay.
Marc has struggled beside me all year long. He’s been my other half – I’d maybe have been able to get thru it without him, but I can’t imagine how. He’s what made it possible for me to do what I did this year, to raise these kids, to get them through the most challenging year of their lives… he never wavered, he was never not exactly what I needed at any point. I’ve never not loved him, I’ve never not wanted him at my side – but this year – this was the year when I knew beyond any doubt that our marriage was the foundation for everything. Everything we do is possible because of that.
So no retrospective this year. I won’t look back, but just forward. 2016 is a year I’ll never forget, and one that I’m incredibly happy to say is over. The rewards were huge, but the price was way, way too high.