I had declared at the beginning of the year it was the Year of the Nap. This now has officially changed to what will happen in 2018! We visited my family mid-January, my father was about to start his first round of chemotherapy. Once we got back home to Portland I posted Instagram sayings such as "work hard, drink coffee, stay sweet, enjoy life" and "there's always room to be a better person, always." As I write this entry I now see that these messages were more directed to me and not intended for the whole wide world. My children, Sam and Colette, grew up like weeds this year. Hiking at Milo McIver State Park made for muddy children and endless smiles. A long weekend trip to the westernmost point of the 48, near Port Oxford was epic and then we spent two weeks in July with our family in Michigan, our summer vacation went by way, way too fast - as they always do. My father's battle with cancer did not go away after all of the treatments and surgery so August arrived, so did September and by then we all knew that my father wasn't going to make it till the end of the year. These were dark days when the sadness crept in and I went for a visit at the end of September to see my father which ended up being my last, and that has got to me the hardest thing I've ever had to write.
My last text from him was:
After sending him a photo of Colette on her birthday, he wrote "Cute BD girl!" 9/15/2017
I couldn't have made it through the year without the loving support of my husband. He is what holds me together, keeps me true to myself and is the love of my life. There are not enough words to thank him for everything he does for me.
Glenys and David visited us over the Thanksgiving holidays and then we celebrated Christmas with my scooter kids and our new-found fun is sledding. We've gone twice now to White River sno park.
Cheers to a peaceful 2018! I have a few goals I'd like to achieve and they are:
- Date nights with Steven, make time for us!
- To remove the stress from last year from my core, find the calm in my day - always!
- To love up on my two little ones. I can't believe Sam will enter Kindergarten this year.
- To be kind to myself.
- To turn on every night my new lava lamp, my Christmas present from my husband, and to always remember to slow down and breath.
I asked my sister to read the below email to my father, I had sent it to her on Friday, October 6th and he passed away surrounded by my mother, two sisters and brother on Wednesday, October 11th.
I am happy we got to see one another last weekend. It was so nice to sit next to you and feel your presence in person. You must know that when seeing you, I only saw my father, the one that raised me, the one that was always there for me, the one that always gave me that look to sort myself out, the one that would end his handful of emails or texts with TOAO (the one and only). You were always my rock. You were inherently good and I am so proud of who you are as a person – your heart is golden and you always meant well. There are not a lot of human beings like that Papa. I plan to instill that goodness in my children and as I grow old together with Steven. I hope that you know with 100% certainty that I love Jehan, Rami and Jasmine and even though we are quite different - at the end of the day, we love one another. We all have so much to learn from one another still!
Please remove the word disappoint from your thoughts. You have never disappointed me or anyone.
My hope is that you are at peace and have a chuckle here and there. Remember the time when during a periodic table competition, I got stumped and you wiggled your ring finger – answer was AU. Remember when we got to dance together at my wedding – I remember you saying, I am proud of you. Remember right after that, you and Jasmine surprised me with a dance of your own and I loved that you did that so very much. Remember when you made me that steak dinner and my contractions kicked in right after that – so I have to blame your amazing BBQ’ing skills for kickstarting Colette’s arrival!
I love you Papa and I am humbled by your love!