Friday, January 2

Tops of 2008

Wow. 2008 has come and gone. Does anyone else feel like the year just flew by? I know I feel like that every year, but last year seems to have vanished into thin air. As I think back over the year, some major memories flood my brain. Some of them good, some of them not so good, but all of these memories have impacted my life and this family tremendously. And, I don't think any one of them carries more weight than the others, so I am listing them in no particular order.

1. We found a new church home. This time last year, we were visiting churches. We weren't committed to any one. As a matter of fact, our boys never knew where we would end up when we all headed out for church. But, this year, we made FBC Clinton our home and felt so happy about it from the very beginning. Only shortly after, Scotty became the preschool interim. For the first time since we got married, Scotty enjoys his job. I am very thankful for this church -- our church.

2. The boys had some major accomplishments. Collin began the summer by learning to swim. Scotty loves teaching our children to swim. Caleb was very hesitant until last summer. But, Collin was so ready this year. He's not swimming for the Olympics, but he can certainly hold his own. We ended the year with both boys learning to ride their bikes without training wheels. Caleb was first (as he should have been) early in December. After Caleb rode on his own for about a week, Collin decided he wanted to learn. And now, they are both zipping up and down the driveway like they've been doing this for years. Amazing!!!

3. Scotty and I celebrated 11 years of marriage. Talk about time flying. I can't believe it has been that long. We've had ups and we've had downs throughout the whole 11 years. We had both this year; and, more than any other year, I feel that we had to put "us" on the back burner. That stinks! BUT, I also found myself being so thankful that I am married to someone willing to ride out the difficult times while being understanding about the fact that three kids, jobs, stresses, etc. will affect our relationship. And then, he's willing to put in the work it takes to make things right reassuring me that "we" are worth it. Love you, sweet husband! :)

4. I am teaching again. For years, I have wanted to get certified to teach aerobics. Exercising has been my escape -- the thing that I do for me -- since Caleb was born. After a few years of being home, I began to have the desire to teach some classes. But I was too scared!!! I'm not sure what I was scared of, but I was. So, this year, I braved up and just did it. I absolutely love it. I teach cycle, sculpt, and some step. Every time I teach, I am amazed that I can do it. While I don't make that much money, I get paid to exercise and someone keeps my kids for free. Sweet!

5. Caleb started kindergarten. You know, I thought this was going to be so much harder than it was. I think the events of the summer helped me to begin to appreciate life in every phase. I just kept thinking that one day, I would look back and remember Caleb in kindergarten, and I wanted to have great memories. If I had been sad about Caleb starting school, I know that the future me would wish I had just enjoyed that time. So, that's what I tried to do. Now, don't think I didn't cry as I dropped him off. It took me several weeks to stop doing that. He just looked so big walking in that giant school. But, he LOVES school, so that really makes it easier to deal with.
6. We had a fantastic trip to Disney World. Well, who DOESN'T have a fantastic time in Disney? It was especially great for us, because it was our first big trip as a family. And, it was so much fun watching the boys enjoy themselves. We got a card from Disney last week. All of the characters were on the front holding a sign that said, "We miss you." Collin said, "O.K., Mom I'm ready to go back to Disney World." Me too. I wish it were that easy.

**Now, I said I was listing in no particular order. But, these last two, while they aren't so positive, have probably impacted me more than the previous.

7. Claire had two seizures this year. Both of these seizures were febrile seizures and lasted only seconds. But, they have changed me to some degree. I was holding Claire through both seizures. No one should ever have to watch their child's body do what hers was doing. I hope I NEVER have to see it again. I am still working through what this last one had done to me. So, there's probably no way that I can verbalize it just yet. Let's just say that I can't seem to get over it and just relax. But, I do have a greater appreciation for those who live with any type of sickness or those mothers whose children live with sickness.
This is Claire at Christmas as she was starting to feel better.

8. Finally, the life and death of Jason Weathers will forever be a part of me. I've written about it, and many of you keep up with Stephanie's blog as well. But, more than anything else that has happened this year, his sickness has impacted me. Just about every morning since January 7th, I wake up thinking about the Weathers. Since his death, I have been torn between grieving for Stephanie and this life that she now owns and thanking God for the miracles that I have observed along the way. She and the kids are so taken care of right now. There are so many that love them. God is good and if you doubt that in any way, go to her site and read from the beginning. But, the situation is still a reminder that life is short and life is hard. And, for both reasons, we lean on the One that gives us life. The One that made a way that we could have life and enjoy life.

Our focus is so important, because what we focus on is always larger than everything else. So, in this situation, I am choosing to focus on God's provision, God's sovreignty and God's eternal love for us. Jason was also healed in 2008. So, I focus on that as well. And, then I pray for healing for Stephanie, Anna Lea, Jon Brent and Ally.

Well, that's it. What a year!! I'm ready to move on. How about you?

In making the list, I have been overwhelmed by how many people were involved in each of these memories; children, friends, teachers, doctors, nurses, strangers, church members, spouses, etc. Every single person involved helped to make this my list of memories. Let's just remember that we were called to relationship. We never know whose life we might impact. There's no way we can make positive prints on other lives when we aren't enjoying the very life that we are given. I'm making several resolutions this year, but I'm going to make that my enjoy this life and all that is in it. It's short and it's hard, but it's mine, and My Creator designed me to enjoy it abundantly. Hey, yours did too. :)


winstead family said...

you certainly have a way with words. *tears streaming down face.
thank you for sharing.

Dee Dee said...

I remember working through Emma's episodes and having to give her to God all over again...I thought I had already taken care of that, but, apparently not. :-) I know they were a reminder of the preciousness of life.

Truly, you do have a wonderful way with words, Amy!

Aly said...

I am so thankful God chose me to be your little sis.
Thanks for this beautiful blog!!
Thanks for the reflection of all the sweet memories of 2008.
Thanks for the reflection of the sad as well - a reminder of what REALLY matters!!
I love you so much,
Aly/Sassy :)

Carly Winborne said...


After I ran into you this morning, I remembered that you had a blog that I had seen once before. I found it once again and so enjoyed this post. I couldn't close it without leaving a comment.

Take care,
Carly Winborne