I've had a ton of mixed reactions when people found out I was actually going.
Most are excited for me,
Some are anxious for me,
And some just don't understand why.
I am so thankful most of my family are happy for me. I think my brother is the most nervous for me, he being adopted too, has a ton of reservations. Some for me, and some for his self. He tells me blood doesn't make you family, love does. He is right. To me that doesn't mean that I cannot have a relationship with my biological family. My brother will always be my brother, no matter what happens.
Every year on my birthday I've made a list if things I'd like to accomplish for the coming year, with my 29th birthday ( the first of many I'm sure :) ) fast approaching its time to see what I've done!
1: Meet my birth parents. this has been on my list for years!! And sad to say I will not be doing this before I Turn 28, but I will be doing it before I turn 30!! Excited to see then in my Birth month, this year!!' Can't wait to write about it!
2: Get motivated, you know to work out more, eat better, and feel better! I've done much better this year than previous years, much!! The weight is coming off ssslllooowwwwly, but it is coming off. I work out almost daily, and eat great! I feel so much better! This will be a yearly goal!
3: Be positive!! I'm not generally a negative nelly, but I do have a problem with not being the bestest at it can be,
This year has be crazy, and I think I've done pretty good and keeping it positive/) it's not easy!
4: switch my focus, I spend/t a lot of time focusing on anything but my home and family, it causes tons of problems between the Mr and I:( I've been working on cutting back the social part of me. And really working on our family. Somedays are better than others, but I feel the tides turning.
5: Letting go. I've been thru some shot... Some real shit in my life. I've held on to a ton of anger and hurt, and it was literally making me sick. I've done a lot in working to let go, and some things I have let go, I've forgiven people for things I thought were unforgivable and I have started the process to forgive myself. I've still got a long way to go.
This coming year holds a ton of excitement and new things, meeting my birth parents, the big girl goes to high school, the baby goes to kindergarden, maybe a return to work... It is also another year to work on myself and my family.
Here is to some of the best years yet!!
Having a baby is a joyous occasion for anyone, and when my wife Heather and I welcomed our little Lily into the world in the summer of 2005, we were ecstatic. Little did we know then that just three months later, we would be thrown into a nightmarish whirlwind of cancer treatments as Heather struggled to overcome an aggressive form of the disease, Mesothelioma
It wasn't easy. All of the challenges that come with adjusting to parenthood were amplified because we were so short on time and resources. Heather had to leave her job, and I needed to take considerable time off in order to care for her and Lily. Meanwhile, there were sleepless nights worrying about my family’s future. I needed to take care of both my wife and my daughter, and Heather needed to remain close to her little girl despite her own pain.
All we could do was our best, and while we struggled, there were wonderful moments every day as we watched our daughter grow and cherished Heather's small triumphs. We were able to be together more because Heather needed me so much, and that brought all three of us closer together. While I wish that she had not needed to go through the pain and fear of that experience, I am thankful for the sense of intimacy that this period fostered. It showed us that we could tackle any challenge that would come our way.
It also demonstrated to us that it really does take a village to raise a child, as well as to fight a dangerous disease. Neither of us could have done it alone. We had a veritable army of babysitters, meal providers and just general helpers who were there for the three of us when we needed it most. We learned who our real friends were and came to rely on their kindness, setting aside our pride for the sake of what needed to be done. I know that both of us would happily do the same if one of those friends were in need.
Being a cancer caregiver is hard, and I had to learn fast with the added pressure of a new baby in the midst of our cancer battle. If you are a cancer caregiver, I hope you can take a few lessons from someone who has been there before. Take all the help you can get, and don’t let your pride get in the way. Allow yourself to have bad days, this is inevitable with the amount of stress and fear you’ll likely experience, but always remember to never, ever give up hope.
Thankfully, not everyone will face the kinds of challenges we did, but every family must deal with unexpected hurdles. Don't let them discourage you. Life is a beautiful gift, so embrace it together.
After months of extensive mesothelioma treatment, including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, Heather was able to defy the odds and beat her cancer. She has been cancer free for seven years. She is the strongest person I know, and I’m so thankful to be able to spend everyday with her. After making it through this terrible battle, we now hope that by sharing our experiences, we can help inspire others currently going through a similar battle. Never give up hope, and always keep fighting for the ones you love.