using my words

I’m a words person. In the days immediately following the loss of my mom, more than photographs of her, I wanted to read her words. I wanted to get a peek at her heart and her sharp mind, so I went back and read her blog from beginning to end. She hadn’t blogged in a long while, but reading her words was such a comfort to me. I emailed a few posts to friends and family. I read a couple out loud to my dad and he even read part of one inĀ the eulogy he wrote.

While I was reading her words, I realizedĀ 1) how much I love writing and how much I’ve missed it and 2) that I want to give my family the gift of words and written memories. So I’m setting an official goal to sit down and write once a week. And it’s for them.

I’ll pop in on January 1 with my list of goals for the year and a theme for this next year. Todd and I heard our pastor give a really great, practical sermon on goal setting and I’m excited to have honed in on some goals that will help me in the new year without adding endless “to dos” to my plate.

We’re welcoming 2016 at home with our kiddos. December kind of kicked our tails and we’re really tired. So the kids are eating pizza and I’m making a giant bowl of Ina’s shrimp scampi with linguine and we’ll play some cards and board games and do our best to stay awake until 10:00 p.m.


this Instagram collage perfectly captures our year

God was good to us in 2015. We welcomed our darling baby boy and he has brought endless sweetness to our days. If there’s one thing that stops Hudson and Hayes from bickering, it’s James Walker and his cute little self. Unless they’re bickering about who gets to hold him.

We discovered that my mom’s diagnosis was likely terminal in May and then we went into memory-making mode and started having some fun. After our trip to Colorado this summer (which I referred to as the best vacation we’ve ever taken), I went to hug my mom goodbye at the airport and started to sob. Sobbing wasn’t an unusual occurrence when we said “goodbye,” but this time I just couldn’t hug her tightly enough. She grabbed my shoulders with her hands and looked me square in the eye and said, “Hey! I am NOT going to die.”

We both knew she couldn’t keep that promise. Obviously. But she wanted to be here to live this life with us and to enjoy the moments with us. And she gave us countless memories that I hope I never forget. And we had the beautiful gift of being able to tell her everything she meant to us.

I’ll hold on tightly to the memories of 2015 for the rest of my life. So many sweet firsts and heartbreaking lasts. And I’m praying that my heart will be open and ready to receive what God is going to teach me in 2016. Happy New Year, family and friends!


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  1. Jody says

    Great words! My mom passed in 2012. She battled leukemia for 6 months. She didn’t journal much at all. She wrote notes and journaled some while she was sick. I love reading her words! It does make me want to journal for my daughters. I love reading your blog! Thank you for your words! You’ve inspired me!

  2. Katrina Pemberton says

    You are such a wonderful writer. Your recent blog posts have brought me right back to 2009 when my dad lost his 7 month battle to colon cancer. He passed just three months shy of my wedding. I can tell you that things do get easier. Life will never be the same, but you slowly just transition into a new normal. At least once a week, I still grab my phone to call him on my way home and he crosses my mind numerous times a day. Your mom sounds like an amazing woman. Thinking of you and your family. I don’t know you, but have been a loyal blog reader for some time and now Instagram follower too. Just felt like I needed to comment.

  3. Nicole says

    I’m a longtime follower (I think I started following you when Hudson was a toddler) and this post brought me to tears. I can’t imagine the emotions you must be experiencing. I have been thinking & praying for you & your family. I’m so happy to see that you’ll be updating your blog again… I really enjoy hearing about your adventures & love your passion for family/motherhood.

  4. Alison says

    Thank you for sharing so much about your mom. I am so very sorry for your loss.
    I, too, am facing the loss of a wonderful mom. My mom has been living with terminal, primary brain cancer for just shy of 2 years. The loss of her personality has been the hardest part. I wish I could be as gracious about it as you. Most of the time I am just mad and sad.
    Your posts encourage me to turn back to faith, to find a priest I can connect with, and to stop blaming God.
    Thank you.

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