Thank frickin' God!
It's been SUCH a year of ups and downs that now, with the last 23 hours of the year to go, I find myself almost dizzy from it all. I have come out on the other end of this year so changed, such a different person with different views of the world, I wonder if I am anything close to the person who started this year.
My most fun moment of 2008, without a doubt, was my sister Marla's wedding to Steve! I say that because I was too spazed out to truly let loose and have fun at my own wedding! Being the spectator at a wedding, instead of the main event, is WAY more fun! I imagine that the next time I will feel that way, I will be watching one of my own children get married! I am old enough to remember every moment of Marla's illness as a child, and to know how far she's come and how blessed she is to be here...seeing her get married was amazing! And after she got married, I got drunk off my butt and had a great time dancing and laughing all night!!
Of course, my own wedding was the happiest day of my life, if not the least stressful! Which is no shock- I am way to anal and bossy to have not been stressed out by my wedding! The whole day was a blur of flowers and tealights and many, many little kids in their finery! It's looking at the amazing pictures that Michelle Bottalico took that really let me reflect on the day- the day that Pete and I promised to give each other the best (and worst!) of ourselves. And poor Pete, he has seen enough of the worst in the first five months to last him a loooooong time- and it's just the start! But, I also know deep down that it's also the start of what I can only pray will be a lifetime of good. We drive each other in-SANE sometimes, and there could not be a better match for me! If I may wax romantic for a moment, and I swear this is not a lie, I knew there was something between us the moment I laid eyes on him, sitting at my desk at work at good ol' Archway! The moment we spoke, I knew we would be friends forever, and not long after that, that "I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him" (ahem. Twilight reference). He loves me for me and despite who I am sometimes, and I could not ask for more.
And by the way, I was scared to DEATH while I was being lifted in that chair! It was by far one of the more terrifying experiences in my life! I really was wishing I had not decided on a thousand pound wedding dress made of slippery satin right about then!
My wedding, of course, was also the day my circle of sister expanded from one to three. I could not have wished for better women to be surrounded by, both birth and in-law, and it has never been more apparent to me then this year. I have watched with awe as my sisters have lived their lives with more strength, grace, bravery and dignity then I have ever seen. And that's not to say that I also haven't watched them become addicted to their Blackberries, be the skinny girl in the naked dress, or run across the room to fart on someone. My sisters are human extraordinaire, and extraordinarily human- among the best humans I know and I am so lucky to have them.
But with joy and luck sometimes comes sorrow. The people I love fought alot of battles this year- Bob, Uncle George, and my dad all fought cancer, and while it was so scary, all three were able to beat it. My sister continues to struggle with lupus, and watching her feel so teribly hurts so much, although I know she will get through it. Even through the most frightening of times, the people I love have continued to show what their made of- tougher stuff then the scary!
Oh, but Greg. We lost Greg this year. At this time last year, it was all just starting. We knew he had a brain tumor, but he had survived one before- none of knew yet the extent of what has happening inside of him. Pete and I spent our last New Years Eve as single people with Shelly, Greg, and their beautiful girls, having a wonderful time and not hampered at all by Greg's eyepatch and slightly hampered gait. By the time our wedding came 7 months later, Greg had to use a walker to get around, and a few days more then three months after that, he was gone. In some ways, the aftermath of his passing has been worse then watching his illness- at least he was alive and with us somehow. It never occurs to you that the days with the people you love could be numbered, and that it could be your days without them that might be forever. And I know I have blogged endlessly about this- trying to make heads or tails of this horrible, horrible thing. I have come to the realization that it will never make any sense, and that all I can do is remember Greg forever, and keep my eye and my heart on Shelly and their girls.
So with 2009 just a few hours away, what do I want from this year? I won't even try to hope to understand the sad times that I will trip over, so matter how hard I try to stay on my feet. I think they just come to everyone, and as much as they scar you, you eventually learn to wear your battle wounds with pride. I hope that 2009 will bring Pete and I the blessings and beginnings of a family of our own, and the money to be able to afford it! I hope the people I love experience all of the joy and hope and promise that a new year has to offer.
Here's to 2009, and I wish anyone who might somehow stumble across this blog the most wonderful of New Years!