It's quite possible that I've cried more in 2009 than in any other year. But let me clarify - they were not all sad tears. It was a very even blend of happy and sad tears. I am a sappy person after all...I cry about all kinds of things.
Like when I opened my Christmas gift from my parents and saw two Kenny Rogers concert tickets - a guy who just happens to be the one artist I've loved my entire life. I cried.
Or when Josh and I traveled to Branson - just the two of us - and I saw all the lights throughout Silver Dollar City for the first time. And being the Christmas crazed person that I am...I cried.
When Caleb had a part in the Christmas musical at church, or when he had his preschool promotion...at both events, I had tears. When Sarah sings with me (and to me) and when I look at her and see what a pretty little girl she is, I often become choked up. As Gabriel took his first steps across the living room, and when I saw him making a huge mess with his first birthday cake (even though I was having anxiety about all the crumbs on the floor) I also felt tears as I realized how fortunate I am to have this sweet little boy in my life.
I cried at the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure as I watched each survivor walk by during the Survivor Processional...because my aunt was a part of it this year.
As I watched my sister receive her degree from MSU, and knowing she would be starting her life as an adult, I had tears. I'm very proud of her. It's still hard to believe she's a grown up...she's still supposed to be 12.
But I'll be honest, there have been sad tears, too.
Like when I learned that a life-long friend of my dad had passed away after fighting cancer for several years. Knowing he was the same age as my dad, and knowing how much heartache and grief that would be for his family. I had tears. I couldn't even sing all the songs at his memorial service.
I cried when I realized Sarah would be having surgery for her eye, even though it was a very common procedure, I was nervous about her having anesthesia. I've had to keep myself from crying about Caleb's upcoming surgery, especially considering it's more invasive (I'll blog about that later).
When Caleb's best friend moved away, I had a very hard time with it. I miss their family, and I think I miss the kids as much if not more than their parents! It is sometimes hard to find children who are just genuinely kind and sweet and who play well with other kids. Payton and Alli were always so nice. I pray that they have found wonderful new friends, and I pray their parents have, too.
Tears have been in my eyes when I wondered if it was time to begin serving in another church. Up until this post, I haven't even mentioned this on my blog. I've kept it between only my closest friends, and I know they've seen how it's been so heavy on my heart. It's a very difficult thing to have to figure out.
So many memories were made in 2009. And while tears accompanied many of them, I was able to make some memories without tears! :o) I loved going to Michigan with Josh and Gabriel, and that's not to say that I didn't miss Caleb and Sarah LOTS while they stayed back in Missouri with my parents. But it was a really nice trip, and I enjoyed spending time with just my little guy who was 8-months-old at the time.
I loved our family trips to Chuck E. Cheese, Maramec Spring Park, The Magic House, Elephant Rocks, The Zoo, and Lions Club Park. It was great to see Caleb take part in the kid version of the Tour of Missouri. I also enjoyed going to a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game with just my parents and sister. We joked that it was the original four of us!
And let's not forget...I turned 30 this year. I managed to survive. Josh's surprise certainly helped.
I believe I will remember this year very vividly...and the main reason is because I have written about so many of the things I just mentioned in this entry. I even have a hard copy of my blog now, and it will be great to flip through the pages in years to come and remember so many happenings of 2009.
Thank you, Lord, for another year.
(Below are some of my favorite pictures through the year...scroll over the pictures to enlarge each one. You can even click on it to see it in a different window.)
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