I wasn't sure how I would feel today. And I'm still not quite sure. I actually wrote most of this a few days ago because I wasn't sure if the words would come to me today. But actually sharing this post is more difficult than I thought it would be....
One year ago this morning we woke up, not knowing what the day would bring. We went through our day, our normal Saturday routine. We were excited for our date night. The kids were excited their Nonnie and Pops were coming to babysit.
One year ago today our lives were forever changed. It took only an instant. But that instant will last a lifetime.
What a difference a day makes.
I just re-read the post I wrote about 4 months after the accident detailing the events of that night. It was hard to read. I think even harder than writing it. That night changed everything. That night....
April 16, 2011.
A date that I will never forget. I've spent a lot of time reflecting over the events of the last year. The good times, and the bad. There has been pain, both physical and emotional. A total of 6 surgeries, and bad reactions to the anesthesia and pain meds. Nearly 6 months of painful physical therapy. And it's not over. I return to the doctor next week to check the fibula fracture, which I don't think is fully healed. There have been hard times with the kids, as they tried to process what happened. There has been anger, sadness, grieving, frustration. Mostly, there has been a lot of change. The reality that my leg will never be the same. Learning to deal with the chronic pain, and the fact that I can't do as much as I used to.
Despite all of that, the moments that stand out most to me are good ones.
Riley coming to visit me on Easter at the hospital. He brought me some of his candy, and a bunny for me to sleep with.
My family and friends who were there for our family.
The meals that were brought to our house.
My mom moving in with us for 5 months, even though it was difficult on my parents (she had to quit her job, and my dad had to pack, move, and unpack on his own).
The prayers and support from people I've never even met.
The flowers from the family of the girl who hit us that I received in the hospital.
Encouraging words, thanking me for sharing our story.
Learning to forgive.
Riley and Eli celebrating birthdays, and growing closer each day. And yes, this includes fighting more, but they are best friends. Riley told me so.
Our niece being born (Ryan's sis and her hubby's baby).
Going to visit my brother, sister-in-law, and my niece in California.
Ryan and I spending our 5 year wedding anniversary in San Antonio, kid free.
Thanksgiving, when we had so much to be thankful for. Truly thankful.
Christmas morning. I remember sitting there so incredibly thankful that I was able to see the pure joy on my kid's faces.
Being able to celebrate a New Year.
My 30th Birthday! Yes, I have good memories of turning 30.
Another trip to visit my brother and his daughter in California. Only this time his wife was deployed to Afghanistan. :( But we had a fun trip to Sea World, the beach, and enjoyed watching the cousins play together!
Shopping for baseball gloves with the boys. They had to try on the pink helmets, too. ;)
Getting a new tattoo. I wanted something to represent our accident, something that forever changed our lives. Ever since I've known Ryan, I have always said a quick prayer when he rides (whether I was with him or not) that God would send His angels to protect him/us (hence, the angel wings). Yes, we were hit. But I still truly believe that God was there, holding us up, surrounding us with His love, grace, and mercy. He carried us through He DID protect us. He still is protecting us. And He always will protect us.
I could go on and on. I have SO many wonderful memories. Some of them I was in a wheelchair, others on crutches, but I was there. I was able to enjoy those precious moments. My foot is still part of my body, and I can walk. I can hug my kids and my husband. I know I sound cheesy and sentimental now. But despite all of the bad, the good moments are what I will remember most.
If I were to sum up the last year in one word, it would be THANKFUL.