The year started off with making preparations for the leap from being a family of 3 to a family of 4, celebrating the 2nd birthday of Malone, and not even a week later, celebrating the new life of Judah. We were so excited for this new phase in our family's life and so grateful that the Lord gave us two healthy, wonderfully unique and beautiful children. Bliss. Summer.
As the months continued on, Cameron started travelling again (he went on his first trip when Judah was 3 weeks old. Sink or swim?) and we realized that this is not the life we wanted for our family. Adjusting to having 2 children and being a single mom most of the time, proved to be pretty difficult. But we were still trucking along, doing our every day activities, just with a newborn now in tow, but looking forward to an opportunity for our little family to make some changes. And an opportunity did, indeed, come our way. We also visited my family in June, where we really realized the gravity of my mom's health, cancer. It was one of the sweetest family times I can remember, despite starting to see glimpses of what lays ahead for us. Beautiful leaves changing colors and starting to fall to the ground. Autumn.
Then as the temperatures started to drop a little in the fall months, the kids and I headed to Alabama to stay with my family for a while to spend some time with my mom, and help in whatever way we could. By then, her disease was progressing fairly quickly. We spent our time enjoying my mom, each other and tried to hold onto the faithfulness of God, even if at times only by a finger or two. An aweful (both terrible and full of awe) winter blizzard. September turned to October, October turned to November and soon we were at the time we were all dreading, but at the same time looking SO forward to for my mom's sake. She passed away on November 20. One of my favorite lines from her obituary reads as follows: "Despite fantastic accomplishments in her life, her greatest ambition was to be with her Heavenly Father, a passion now realized." There is a quiet beauty amidst a cold and terrible snowstorm. Winter.
I am reminded of the purpose of winter in nature. In order for a tree to grow, "the seeds of each plant have certain conditions that need to happen before the seed will break open so the young embryo can begin a new life cycle. These conditions often include a long period of freezing." A time of cold rest, maybe? Perhaps winter's wrath is time for the seeds of new life to be protected from a warm summer's insect infestation? Maybe winter's purpose is not for winter itself. Rather, the culmination of winter is for Spring.
So as I sit here on this cold, wet, winter morning, in every sense of the word, I long for Spring. Luckily its right around the corner.