Tuesday, April 16, 2013

It's a Wonderful Life!

As i was folding laundry today my dad called to check in and let me know that i needed to come to the blog site and do some cleaning up on some spam comments and such...so... like the theme of my day, i've cleaned every inch of our house, so i came to clean up my blog as well! Didn't take as long as i'd thought it would, so i thought maybe i'd try and post an update since keegan is quiet and playing on his own! Almost 6 months ago now, Mike and i were married!! i feel like i just blinked and its been that long! i have to admit that this transition has been the easiest so far. We've had so much change in the past 2 or 3 years now, but this "newest" of our normals has honestly felt like its just always the way it should have been. I am awe-struck at how God can give me the desires of my heart as a teenager to grow up and find myself and have had the partner perfectly suited for me in Colin...and that, not once, but TWICE, He has again granted me the desire of my "changed" heart for someone so different but so perfectly suited for me and the kids in this stage in life! i'm not who i was when Colin and i were married and God knew exactly what i needed in a lifelong partner from here on out, and boy, am i thankful!! I keep honestly pinching myself, smiling, that we found Mike, and he's OURS!!! He and the boys have settled in beautifully to a father-son relationship...and the boys have been a dream through the changes...its like God knew their hearts in wanting our family to be complete for them to have a daddy actively apart of every day. What a JOY its been to go through each day being able share life with someone again! To laugh at the funny things the boys do, to be able to discipline having some have MY back, on the qualities we are trying to instill in our boys. We are both in awe at God's impeccable timing, with how we met, and fell in love and the intertwining of our lives and families...God knew and He dreamed a dream so much bigger than we, ourselves, could ever imagine! i'm completely smitten, and so incredibly content with each day! I'm positive there are trials and changes that are ahead of us, but i now know, the lessons that i've learned, to TRUST, that our prayers are heard, and answered...and not to worry about tomorrow, because we just may not get there...but love today, in our sweet little family moments! Some have said how sorry they are that i've had to go through the hardship i have, but i believe in this GREATER plan, that i may just be able to be apart of something bigger than myself, making a dent in sharing God's insane love for His people! The boys are growing at lightning speed! Corban is almost finished Grade 2 already and Keegan is all set to begin Kindergarten this September!!! AHHHHHH!! i'm excited for Keegan to start something new, for bigger adventures ahead as a family! The beginning stages of our house building process in under way and we are enjoying getting our entire family apart of brainstorming and having the place of our dreams in the country! Like i said, BIG changes ahead, but i'm strangely content with taking it one day at a time...i enjoy our home we are in now, i love where we are at, and i'm excited for whats ahead, but i'm not in any rush! I've always vowed to be a woman who is thankful and Praises God in ANY and EVERY circumstance, and my gift to our kids is to teach them to do the same through their lives. God is good ALL the time, and i need to say thank you again, to those who have prayed for us, and continue to pray for our family! i'm thankful for you! Until the next time! xoxo Melissa

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The next Chapter...

I can't even believe how long its been since i last had the chance to sit down and write a post! i don't know where the time has gone, but what an amazing ride this last year has been! I have made a conscious choice to keep something to myself, in part because I have chosen to share so much with so many people; through our journey with Colin's cancer and then the aftermath for me and the boys...I have no words, for the thanks i have for a God who has walked with me and the boys through our darkest days and also led us by the hand into a new and beautiful future. Still, i stand in awe, of how my secret prayers of never wanting to be alone, and in the qualities i would most desire, if He chose for me to find someone to love again...How God can take something so painful and use it to weave this beautiful love story knocks me back to how little we are, and how magnificently HUGE our God is! Let me begin, by telling you that dating for a second time around, along with two kids, and with family and friends who are guarded and protective of us, has been a learning curve! which is a bit of the reason i chose to keep things quiet, i wasn't even sure what to say or how to form into words what it felt, to be going through this all again...i chose to make sure that God knew my heart and my deepest desires, and i trusted that HE has specifically hand-picked this special person for me and the boys. Little did we all know how it would unfold, but what a beautiful journey it has been! His name is Mike, we know each other from having been in school together since grade 7...we had always been friends, always enjoyed each other...but let me tell you, after almost 10 years of not seeing him...he grew up...into the kindest, most patient and gentle man, and his heart is one of the biggest i've come to know! I think the boys honestly, thought that he was entirely there just for them when he first started spending time with us...and the more time he spent, the more attached we all became, he fits so perfectly....but i was so guarded at first, holding him at a distance for a while, but he persued me, and he loved me, and it didn't take very much work for me to fall in love with him! there is SO much more to our story, the "little" things that God has shown us, that He has brought the two of us together...I wish i could write every detail, but Keegan won't possibly let me be on the computer that long, and i'd be here till next week, typing it all out! i have enjoyed dating...with so much more depth and richness than i ever did when i was 17 years old...to fall in love knowing the cost of losing someone, and to have the chance to fix or savour what i didn't before, has been such a precious gift! To get to have a "first kiss" again, to go out on our "first date" again, to hold his hand, makes my heart so full....to look up and feel so humbled that God would hear my prayers and allow my dreams to come true again in this lifetime is more than i can take in all at once...if i do, i can't help my be a blubbering mess at the thought of it all. What a precious gift God has entrusted to me with Mike...i am not who i was when i was married before, and i can't wait to be a wife and settle into being just a mom, and not carry this load on my own brings sheer joy in my world...to have found someone whom i connect with so perfectly yet so differently than anyone else, a best friend to share our lives with...we are beyond thrilled for this next chapter of our lives, and this next chapter begins on Saturday, THIS saturday OCtober 27th:) I'M GETTING MARRIED!!! I get to be a bride again,i get to be a wife again, and our little family unit gets to be glued back together and become whole once again! I am beyond proud of Mike, a single guy, successful in his career and his life, who would be brave enough to come into our lives, and more than step up to being a Daddy to the boys (who love him more than my words could ever say), to be patient and teach them things i could never do for them! He has courage and patience and love that i admire so much in him...i'm thankful for our individual journey's to get us to where we are at right now, and we could never have a written a better love story...God's plans are far more than we could ever ask or imagine, and there is healing that WILL come with every circumstance...and we are living proof! Can you imagine?!??! a love story written by God, Himself, my life-story, dreamed up by God, Himself! i'm still shaking my head in awe, with tears streaming down my face...all we've been through and all we have yet to experience! My wedding vows, having lived through those very vows i promised to Colin, have new meaning and come with a new level of faith and promsie than they did before.... i couldn't be more excited for this next adventure to begin, and from time to time, i will try my hardest to check in and keep you up to date! for now...a new Chapter! For those of you who have never stopped praying and encouraging us, i am beyond thankful for you...especially those who have prayed for me to find love again, and to my friends and family who have walked with me through this learning curve, who have allowed me to stumble but not fall, and walked with me along the way, opened up your arms to Mike and given him a chance to be apart of your lives as well, i'm forever grateful! i'm thrilled you will be joining us and making new memories with us in this next chapter! xox, love, Melissa

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I'm feeling the need to be candid with u right now...it's been a huge struggle for me the past few weeks or so as to how two "little" ones...whom I love and adore have this ability to beat me down and frey every last nerve I can find...it must be a mixture of winter and this HORRIBLY LONG month among other things! Keegan has decided to throw a curve ball at me and cut his naps as well as wake everyone up at ungodly hours of the morning...if I could even call it morning...I'm tired...and the days r long and yes I'm complaining...this is hard...Even right now as i'm typing this, i am in the midst of the biggest battle of wills i've had to date with keegan. He is crying in his room for me to come, and here i sit not going up until he stops crying. I don't have the answers, which is why i can only pray and beg God to give me some sort of insight to be able to get through to him. I feel disheveled and beaten down...and this discourages me but also has brought perspective for me...with my dearest little men come with them their sweet little problems (although they seem like mountains for us all at the time)...and with age and maturity (or lack there of)...come a pile of BIG problems...I need to stay thankful and humbled that somehow God chose this path for me...for reasons I'm realizing r true blessings. Things like being able to empathize and relate to others whom r also single parents. My boys r so precious but so often...I choose dishes or cleaning over that sacred time with them, and before long that time will have passed me by...I pray I keep that in mind...Jesus keep my perspective where it matters most! I need to keep making sure i'm parenting in a way that brings Glory to God...something that humbles and terrifies me! Some days r so good and others are just a series of uphill battles...we have all been there, i find comfort in knowing i'm not the only one! I just felt the need to vent, hoping u don't mind it!
Aside from this, the boys r good! Corban is losing teeth...#2 is about ready to fall out and he loves being around people and spending time with his aunt and uncle and cousins...Keegan is a sweetheart...stubborn and persisent at times but a mischievous little sweetheart and we r in that stage where he tries every bit of patience I have...but his heart is so sweet and he is SO colorful in his actions and reactions...and lately both boys would talk every minute of the day if I let them! Makes me smile...and appreciate what my parents must have gone thru raising me;)

It's Colin's birthday tomorrow (26th)...the second one without him being here...he would have been 31!! I can guaruntee u I would be buggin him just like I bug my brother and Nat about being over 30:)..oops! sorry for throwing that out there! ;)
We woulda had ice cream and supper with my family...who knows what me and the boys would have found for him for a present...that thought is so unsettling right now...who knows...I don't know what he would have been into at this point or been excited to want to have for his birthday....it's been a year and a half already...and so quickly u forget those teeny tiny details...it scares me to death that I'm not going to remember things for when the boys want to know certain details....and at times in the last week...guilt has crept in and made its home in my mind....because reality is...He's not here anymore...I will always love him...he was my first "one true love"...he gave me so much love and happiness and he blessed me with the boys...but I can't possibly move forward if I'm not allowing myself to let go...but how do you let go and prevent the time and distance in making you forget? I feel caught between a rock and hard place...and naturally there will be things that we r gonna forget...I guess I'm thankful for our memories thru so many pictures and videos...
And in being honest with all of these thoughts...I second guess myself on these kinds of posts because half the time they don't make sense to me...it's kind of just what's swirling around inside that I need to get out or I'll explode! I need to be honest and real and I guess in doing that I take a risk of exposing myself. It's kind of a scary place to be, but it frees me as well. i'm on this crazy cool path of discovering who God made me to be and how He is using these events and experiences in my life to rewire my heart and mind. i'm realizing that there are things about me which i need some constant prayer and working on...i'm a pleaser...who knew?! well, maybe the people closest to me knew all along, but i'm just figuring out what God wants to teach me through this, and try my darnest to have Him rewire these stubborn tendancies in me...the list is WAY too long to share in the things i feel like He wants me to shed and do some "house cleaning" to make more room for His presence in me, but i'm workin on it! My perspective is changing...who am i in God's huge master plan?! Why am i so quick to live so selfishly that He is here for me, and not that i am here for this time for HIM....these switches have come from a book we are studying through on wednesday mornings called "crazy love" by Francis Chan....wow...i'm humbled and convicted and in awe, and so thankful...and we are only in the first Chapter! More growing pains...they hurt...
Now, i feel like i've unloaded what i need too, Keegan is still crying, and so the waiting game goes on...Jesus please bring a resolve that teaches both of us what we need to differently to be better!
I guess there are some days that i'm not afraid to admit that i have started the bedtime countdown...and yes my friends, it's just after lunch!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

So my saved copy of a half blog post in Microsoft Word is just going to have to wait...For some reason, my inspiration seems to be best thought out when written off the top of my head...and today i'm inspired!
It has become evidently clear to me in the last couple days that God is reminding me of a really cool thing. The amazing simplicity of our faith doesn't happen in the troubled times and crises of life. Although God wants nothing more than to lead us through the fire in safety and protection...and believe me when i say i've experienced first hand the power of prayer and protection in our darkest moments in life! BUT How dare we sell God short of living true freedom and the abundance of blessing by ONLY coming to Him in those toughest of times...God desires to shower His love and provisions over us EACH day...good and bad, sickness and health...if its so easy for us to make those vows and promises to our spouses and family members...why do we forget our Creator?! Afterall, His plans for us are perfect and His timing is exact and calculated to bring about such Grace and peace and JOY...How dare we sell Him short of all that He could do in and through us?! i made a promise to God and to myself that once things settled down in our lives, that things wouldn't settle down in my faith...that lukewarm laziness that happens when we really dont NEED God, because life is good and things are going well for us...To be truly honest, I experienced a revival, an awakening in my soul in the darkest moments of my deepest pain and loss...and i have to say that i am forever changed from it...it grieves me to think i used to be the kind of person to really come to the Feet of Jesus only when i had a need...financial, the kids, Colin's job related...How dare I use such a selfless and Holy God at my disposal and kick Him aside when i felt i could do life better...i'm convicted but also humbled that God would still choose to keep loving me, keep using me, and want to keep growing me...and now that those changes have happened and that awakening is in me...i'm excited!! i'm excited to see things happening around me, God awakening others and drawing us closer so we can grow together! 2012 is a year that i have a quiet anticipation for what God wants to do in my family and friends lives and its going to be a year of being blessed in our faith and in growing and learning what God desires for us!
My Utmost For His Highest puts it so perfectly (excuse my paraphrasing), So often our prayers are only prayed when we have a need and we eagerly expect the answers we desire...but in essence, God's heart's cry for our prayers to be a way to be close to Him, whether we seek answers or just to talk...He is ALWAYS there, and believe it or not, He too, has so much He wants to share with us!
I am SO encouraged by the fact that our Faith is a journey of growth and learning...if we really grasp the importance of our relationship with Christ, we can't stay in one spot, as life throws us battles and experiences, we don't ever stay the same, nor does our relationships with our people close to us, and nor should our relationship with our God!
AND how cool is it that this morning in church our pastor is so very pointedly preaching on breathing new life into our spiritual growth...that our faith has to change and grow or else, we're going to seriously miss out!! Hold on, this new year has come and if we're not careful, we can miss out on so much of the inspiration that God wants to use to change us and breathe new life in us!

One thing i do want to add is that this Christmas was such a welcomed change from last year...We welcomed being at home enjoying time with family and friends and of course having Keegan get a bad case of croupe right before, we barely made it to Christmas without him being hospitalized...but God was good, He allowed us to all stay home and get healthy and enjoy our quiet rest! I have ALWAYS loved staying at home for Christmas and although the sting was still there that Colin couldnt be with us on Christmas morning to watch the boys open gifts, the 3 of us talked a lot about what Daddy was doing with Jesus and what kinds of festivies would be happening in Heaven for His Birthday! What a party that would be!!
AND to ring in the new year...the boys finally saved enough money for their fish!! i have promised them fish for a long time so we enjoyed taking a family field trip to the pet store to get them each a fish and a little tank and all the decorations to make the fishies comfortable in their new home!
So now its January, and even though this time of year always makes me a bit sad...that my favorite time of year has once again come to an end, and that January seems to be the longest most boring month out of the entire year...i'm looking forward to the adventures of 2012...to what we can accomplish and to what God has to show us!!

I am not one to send out Christmas cards or holiday letters, but i guess this is what's on my heart at the moment and i just thought i would share it, if only to get it out and process through it for myself...i pray u can take tidbits and be encouraged or challenged in what God has for you this coming year!

Blessings to you and yours,

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Mish Mash of the Past Few Months!

I'm sitting here at my computer this morning, coffee in hand..or on the desk in front of me...shaking my head at how long it's been since i've sat down to write a post...Thanksgiving! October 8th?~ Wow, has it really been that long??? It feels like just yesturday...there used to be a time when i was so afraid of the dreaded dragging on of everyday...those days when you look at the clock and wonder how only 3 minutes have passed when it feels like 30?? Thankfully those days aren't so often around here... the boys and i have fallen into this really good groove...we have finally figured out how to be a good little team of 3! i'm not saying that everyday is easy with a 6 and 3 year old...but i have figured out how to embrace God's gift of JOY in my life...and it has brought me to this beautiful place of contentment! I have been feeling for a little while like i need to fill you in on the boys...tell you about the growth and changes i've seen in them over the past year and a half since their Daddy has been in Heaven. Our dearest Corban has obviously had the brundt of the pain because he is the oldest and he and Colin were literally inseparable...and there are still things i have very vivid flashbacks about...still even now...i'm remembering parts of what we went through..i guess that's the beauty of getting them in small doses...you sort through them and grieve them as they come...anyways, about a week ago, i was reminded of that moment. The moment i most felt terrified for, and so unprepared to do. The moment Corban walked up our front steps and came through the front door and saw me sitting on the couch (which, when Colin was in his last weeks, i NEVER did). The moment he saw me sitting down, it was instant, he immediately asked where Daddy was, and it was then i had to do the most horrifying thing i've ever done in my entire life...I had to tell my little boy that his Daddy was gone and he could never come back. i'm crying even now typing this...i think that's why this blog has been my saving Grace in processing these memories. In that moment of such extreme pain in Corban's world i prayed he would someday understand that there was nothing else for Colin but to be healed in Heaven, and that we would all try to wrap our heads around this new reality. i will never forget his cry...as a mom , especially with young kids, you have this God-given ability to be able to take away the pain of your kids...That is my job...and nothing i could say or do in that moment and so many moments to follow could, or ever will, be able to take that pain away from my boys...i have these times of grief not for me, but i feel i'm grieving for them...those times and memories they have been robbed of with their Dad. BUT...i am thankful...because we have made to sure to draw near to God in our pain, and He promised that He would draw near to us. And He has...we are in a good place. We can think back and remember Colin with happy faces and not crying hurting hearts. We miss him, so so much, but now we can sit and cuddle on the couch and talk about what our favorite things about Colin were. This is a place that seemed like an unattainable goal at times. I am SO thankful to be in this place with my boys. Just yesturday Keegan and i were getting groceries and while waiting in line a lady made a comment to Keegan about playing with his Daddy...and Keegan smiled so matter of factly and said respectfully, that his Daddy is in Heaven. She looked at me so embarrassed and suprised and i warmly tried to ease the akwardness of the situation...its our reality now, and it's ok...God is good, we are Blessed and we have so much to be thankful for, and i make it my priority to help the boys understand that.
My sweet Corban was at skating lessons last week where they ended the class with getting balloons, and while we were getting our skates off and readying to leave the rink a little girl not much older than 2, accidentally popped her balloon...her face was so sad and her head sunk with such disappointment that she no longer had her balloon...and without hesitation, Corban walked over to her and gave her his balloon...i could not have been more proud in that moment of seeing his heart swell, and that light bulb moment of experiencing how good it feels to give...what a lesson, what a gift! i'm learning to understand the person God is molding him to be...He is so kind, generous and concerned about others and making them feel welcomed and loved...He is a typical firstborn trying so hard to help parent Keegan...which i constantly keep reminding him that its my job and he gets the best role of being big brother and best friend to Keegan.
My little keegie bear is musical and free-spirited, which is in the meaning of his name...He loves to sing and dance, and more than anything he loves to laugh and make others laugh...he, too, is learning to share and figuring out that its better to listen to our rules and evade consequences, for a much happier mommy, and much happier Keegan in the long run:) He is 3, we have our moments, and our days, but he is a blessing!
I have been blessed with both my boys wanting to cuddle ALOT...i won't ever wish away the times when i have SO much to do around the house but the best moments for me is to drop it all and just sit. Sit and talk, sit and laugh, or sit and be silent...but what a gift and a lesson for me. These are those most important times that i won't ever regret taking! Our favorite things to do together has been playing nerf guns, tossing (gently) around the football in the basement which usually ends in a wrestling/tickling match! Corban has found a love for lego and keegan is usually somewhere in his imagination being a brave knight fighting off the dragons that keep popping up all over the house;) Life is so good!

Last weekend, I was able to have 2 dreams of mine come true...some girls i've been friends with for so long, and myself...all went to Las Vegas for 4 days...our mission was to run the Rock 'n' Roll 1/2 marathon that routes along the entire strip and around the sights of VEGAS...13.1 miles seemed like a good idea...Vegas and the race were 2 things on my bucket list, and we were on a mission to do some shopping as well as just take in the sights and sounds of a city that never sleeps! Our trip started with a limo ride which toured us around before heading to our hotel (Planet Hollywood)...WOW...it was like out of a movie! Little ol' Small-town-girl was on sights and sounds overload! There were 44,000 people registered for the race itself...5000 for the full marathon and the rest running the half with the four of us! We were wall to wall people the entire 13.1 miles! Early on, when i realized my high hopes for a good finish time would not be at all possible, i set my goal to run the entire race...i wanted to say i RAN it ALL...it seemed like a great goal for the first 6 miles...but rounding mile 9 i was in tears and every joint in my lower body was SCREAMING for me to stop...BUT i prayed...i asked God to give me the strength and endurance i needed to push through the pain and keep going, to keep my mind strong in the fight i was having within myself to stop...and by 2hours and 29minutes, i had crossed the finish line!! Everything in me hurt...but i think that what was so bittersweet for me was that i was all alone...obviously the 4 of us girls couldn't stay together the whole way through, but the one person i shared my dreams of running too, was Colin...i again, i was brought back to the day we were driving home from the hospital, after transplant, and he asked me a very pointed question.."what do u want? What can i do for u to say thank u for caring for me?" and i said i wanted to run...so that Christmas 2009, he bought me my first "fitted" pair of runners and when everyone was asleep each day for their afternoon naps, i would go for my run...a time when i would zone out, and just be me, with no demands on me or anything required of me...just me and fresh air and my music as loud as i wanted in my ears!
I wore those runners last week for my first race...and i cried when i finished that he wasn't there...something that for one of the first times in my life, i've dreamed of and followed through on...that was emotional for me...i have proven to myself that it's ok to dream, and that i am capable (with a lot of help from my God) to see those dreams happen! So...I did it...but don't get me wrong, it doesn't mean i'm hooked to the races now...i think my 1/2 marathon is crossed off and i have no wishes at this point to do another...someday in the near future i will do my full marathon, but i am content to wait until the freshness of the pain eases from my mind on this one!
The trip and the girls i was with were once in a lifetime, and i am SO thankful i had the oppertunity to go..my parents and Natalie being SO generous to take the kids while i was away! Even though it was anything BUT relaxing, i felt recharged and thankful to have had some time away...it made me better appreciate my role as a mom...it was SO healthy to do that...
As Christmas rushes up out of nowhere, i am SO excited to have the desire to want to stay at home...I didn't have that last year and we were ever so grateful to go to my aunt and uncles' farm in Hanna to get away! But this year, being surround by family and friends is my wish come true...I am completely surrounded by people who love me and the boys and we are this beautiful family who can be real with each other and grow together in our journey's (wherever they may be at) with God! We are happy, but i think it goes so much deeper than that. I have JOY...having gone through pain and our journey of healing, I see the Grace of a God who loves me more than anything in this world, and i have promise after promise that He won't ever let us fall...isn't that what He intended for His Grace to be?! That soft pillow landing from the depth of the pain and suffering that goes on in this world! I have a gift that i am forgiven and that someday me and the boys will get to see Colin again and fill him in on all of our adventures after he left...I have JOY because we have come so far, and we are still going, i'm excited for what is coming for us...for what God is doing in and through us...I have HOPE because of a little baby boy, born so many years ago with a very concrete purpose to save me and all those i love from death, and bypass us right through to true life itself, the way God intended from the very beginning of time...oh to get a glimpse of that life!!! But when i look at it through the perspective of pure JOY, i guess i have glimpses, everyday, wherever i am!
My prayer is for you too, to find that same gift of JOY and God's amazing Grace in this season!
Merry Christmas!!!
Luv, Melissa

Saturday, October 8, 2011

SO Full of SO Much Thanks!!

I love those times when i find a thought provoking concept that just makes me excited and inspires me...i think its like the concrete examples that God can show us He is growing us! Sometimes, i have to digest these things in my heart before i get them out...usually in written form...this blog has been my “journal”...so i thank you again for allowing me to bare my soul and share these times of growth and inspiration with others...my prayer is that God can use a morsel of my words to speak to you and bring your heart closer and draw out that intense inspiration that only God can bring!
So i’m loving the beginning of the school year when activites get started again and we can be apart of our community of friends to connect....Wednesdays Mornings, there is a large group of ladies who meet together (along with great coffee) and this is my time to do be with friends who can share their wisdom and experiences...and i’ve been able to get into a parenting book that is already challenging me and breaking down the stereotypes that we silently place on ourselves and on our families. I’ve been realizing that my “ideal” life is a non-existant...but by who’s standards do we place these impossibly high expectations on ourselves...and how much JOY are we robbing ourselves and our families of, by not measuring up!
I was asked to share a bit of my story last weekend at a women’s retreat in Elkwater...and it was there i met a woman who challenged me, yet again, to take a closer look at the standards i’m placing on me and the boys. It convicted me...and it made me sad at the time i have spend wasting on being impatient or busy “doing” instead of just “being”. Its a freeing concept to be completely honest...being “real” is just how i desire us to be...God doesn’t use perfectly put together people, He uses the broken and bruised who are on their knees knowing that the only ideal is to be used and loved by a God who just wants to love us!!
The guest speaker who is from Calgary, at the retreat, introduced this concept of “living loved”....which means that there is this constant buffer because no matter what we go through in this life...we know...undoubtedly that we are loved by our support system around us...that no matter what the risk involved, we can have freedom to jump because even if we fail, we are loved....i think that this concept is so simple yet so profound...isn’t that what God has designed in family and friends and the body of Christ on this earth to be?! We are loved...no matter what....so lets be real...to share when we are tired, angry, hurt or full of Praise....instead of judging and comparing ourselves and others....lets love and create that safe buffer of love....then it occurred to me, I AM LOVED...and i am so filled to overflowing in how that blesses my each and every day!
During the time that Colin was sick after he had relapsed...when we both just “knew” he was terminal...i made a promise both to him and to myself...to keep dreaming, and that by dreaming those dreams, i would commit to the risk...the risk in living my most dreaded fear...single parenting...risking to navigate through this life without him, to seek God in who I am, and risk following Him into the unchartered territory ahead. I committed to not just staying safe but to step out and blindly trust....it has truly changed me, it has brought freedom, and allowed me to really live...for that i am SO thankful!

Please forgive me if this is scattered...i just don’t want to lose what i’ve got in my heart so i need to just express it and pray God puts it into perfect order!
Another weird thought just occurred to me...this is already the second Thanksgiving without Colin...i have to be honest, last year was WAY too quiet and we had no plans...this year it was my prayer to be completely surrounded by family and that is exactly what is happening, some actual family and others my extended family of bonded friends....WE ARE LOVED...and i am SO thankful....Colin is in such a beautiful place, how can i not just be so full of praise for the blessings around us...my heart is so full...we are so very blessed...i have no words to full express that!
That’s why these Holidays are filled with so much more richness and depth...our celebrations are just the extension of what is happening in Heaven!
The most precious thing i am Thankful for is the gift of life that God gave through His Son...
I believe...not because i was raised in this faith, and not because i feel the need to keep the rules and law of any given religion...but because I am a sinner....conflict and worry, my need to control and my discontentment...this sin leads to death without any way out. Jesus, He, is the way out...by taking on all the sin and disease of this world, he cancelled everything, every debt and washed my slate clean by His precious blood and His life...my desire is to live a life that is being inspired by a God who gave His only son to die on my behalf! How dare i keep that gift to myself or keep it contained inside...FOR THIS I AM THANKFUL....for the freedom of being able to have this voice to share it and be real with what makes me excited and truly feeling alive!!
Happy Thanksgiving!
Love, Melissa

after reading this post back, it literally just spilled out of me...these words exactly how they are, are what is in my heart...untouched in the mumble jumble of it all...but i guess that's how i wanted it to be...just real, and 100% me:)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Is it really almost OCTOBER?!?!?! Where have i been?! Or a better question is "what the heck have we been up too, that i just can't get my act together enough to post more often?!?!"
The highlite of the past month or two was that last weekend, I got to go on a quick "girls" trip to Calgary for the Keith Urban concert!!! WOW! What an amazingly fantastic show! honestly, more than anything i enjoyed being with the girls and just letting go of my world and just zoning out with some amazing music for an entire evening! I had a blast and it recharged me to just regroup and take some "me" time:)That makes me a better parent, and my boys were in the most amazing hands Thanks to my amazing parents. Because i knew they were having a blast and being well taken care of, i was able to do it...that is a blessing all in itself...don't know what i'd do without them! i'm so very thankful!
I find lately with having been busier this summer and not posting blogs so often...I am internalizing a lot more of my thoughts and feelings...which causes those same pot holes of worry and doubt to creep in and tear up a beautiful paved road that I've asked God to heal...sure I have my scares...my road will never be completely free and smooth...but I need to make sure I'm aligning myself with Gods plans...my hearts desire is to share my life with someone I love...I found my hearts desire once and I married him and we created a beautiful life together...simple and full of so much love and life...that pot hole of guilt...in thinking I've had it already once...would I ever be so blessed to have God grant me that kind of love again? I can't worry about those things that aren't here...it's foolish to wish for plans that r selfish...God has to have something more...I have to keep trusting In His plans to be so much richer and fuller than I could ever dream!
I am inspired to once again be content...in whatever stage of life God has me in right at this moment...to truly believe that there is no greater place than this...but what a conflicting place for one's heart to be...I believe God plants dreams in our hearts and desires more than anything for us to dream Big! So today my prayer is that I may be faithful in trusting that God has a master plan and that somehow He has something exciting for me in that plan...and that my dreams and my hearts desires will be moulded out of His hearts desire for me...to let go and let God...and know that beyond this life is the absolute mind-blowing destination that we have been created for in the first place...this earth only being a pitstop along the way to our eternity in a foreverness of hope and peace and anything beyond what we could ever ask for or imagine! Now Try to wrap ur head around that!!! 'gives me goosebumps!'
Over the last year, I have been pushed out into the cold and forced to take a leadership role desperately seeking where God wants me and my boys for the rest of this life...because afterall, it was Colin’s time to go home, but my time is not up, it’s not over, i have to keep going whether i want too, at times, or not. My dad send me this email of a devotional he gets, and it was so perfectly written, and i’d love to share with you!

Key Bible Verse: Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.(Psalm 90:12)
God has the authority to shape a soul with his voice, bind it to matter, and send it into history. And he has the authority to sever my soul from my body and call it to another part of the stage. He has the authority to reuse the matter from my flesh in daffodils. I'm not worried. I'll get more.
There is no evil in his voice calling us to cross the Jordan, whether he calls us singly or in droves. There is no evil when he tells us to lay our first flesh down, no more than when he sends a caterpillar into its cocoon.
To his eyes, you never leave the stage. You do not cease to exist. It is a chapter ending, an act, not the play itself. Look to him. Walk toward him. The cocoon is a death, but not a final death. The coffin can be a tragedy, but not for long.
There will be butterflies.
I will die, and when I do—whether it be in my bed as age creeps over me, or struck by lightning, a meteor, or a UPS truck—[God's] hand will be the one that cuts the thread and shows me the path he blazed through tragedy. His finger will point to the parade.

The biggest lesson i can share with you is how i’ve learned not to be afraid of death, but to instead trust God with my story....in it’s entirety...because now, i’m starting to believe things for me again, i have faith and i trust that God still wants to grant me the desires of my heart...that makes me full of hope!
I will try my best to post again soon!
Love, Melissa