Monday, December 31, 2012


I've been wanting to write this blog post for the month of December and could never seem to find the right words.      It's difficult to find all the words that go along with heartbreak while at the same time finding words to be grateful.     So, let me try .....

It has to do with 2012.     It has been a difficult year, but at the same time, it's been a joyful year.     The word that keeps coming to mind is celebration and as hard as I have fought writing about celebration, it really is one that fits.

As you know, January of 2012 started off with the loss of my beautiful Mother.     No words can possibly desribe how much she is missed.    You only have one mother and I was blessed with a very good one; one that wasn't perfect, but one that was perfect to me.     When my sisters and I were planning her funeral service, I remember talking with the Pastor who did her service and he made sure to tell us that he wanted to make sure it was something that she would have loved.    It was a "celebration" of her, what she meant to us, to her grandchildren, her brothers and sisters, and her friends.     As I have grieved deeply this year, it recently came to me that the reason for the pain was because I missed "celebrating" her.     I missed having a cup of tea with her, missed our long conversations, missed her getting excited over Dancing With The Stars, and missed our Friday evenings together.    I also realized, however,  that she is having a cup of tea in heaven, she is having the very best conversations, she is always dancing, and she is continually celebrating while she has Jesus in her presence.        

February began another hurdle with John's Father being admitted into the hospital.    After several strokes and him getting weaker and weaker, it was becoming more evident that staying at home with his wife caring for him was becoming dangerous for both of them.     A few months later, he was admitted into a long term care facility.    For the last seven years, we have had the blessing of watching John's mother care for her husband with every ounce of love that she had.     When he was admitted into long term care, she would still visit each night.     She walked in and his face lit up.     After the nurses would put him into his wheelchair, she would walk him down to the dining room, feed him, clean him up, spend several hours with him, and make sure he was comfortable in bed before she left.     She had celebrated fifty seven years of marriage with him and was still celebrating their life together no matter what the circumstances were.   

Our next celebration occured when Andrew and Christina were married on June 30th in Islesford, Maine.     Family and friends gathered and witnessed one of the most beautiful island weddings I have ever seen.     I know that I am biased, but really it was.     They wrote their own vows to which their wasn't a dry eye in the room.     They poured their hearts into the day and it was pure evidence of a love that was deep and respectful of one another.   The food was amazing, John and I had some time to ourselves, and our son was happy.     It was a reason to celebrate.   

Another celebration occured in August when my nephew returned home from Afghanistan unharmed and safe and sound.     He returned home to his wife and met his two month old son for the first time.    I still thank God.   

And the celebrations continued with an engagement, a birth of another grandchild, and the beginning of a new and special relationship with our oldest son, Michael.     He met a young woman, Courtney, who has a special little baby girl, Rosslyn.      They met when Rosslyn was just six months old.     Both of them have become very important to not only Michael's life, but to ours as well.      I can't tell you how many times I wished my mother could have met both of them.     She would have loved them too.    Just as I start to feel sorry for myself, something inside of me always brings to back to reality.     God knew what he was doing when he sent these girls into our lives.     Just when I feel like I can barely celebrate another minute, I'll see them.     Rosslyn has a smile that truly lights up a room.     She just started walking and reaching up to you.    She also just started blowing kisses.     How can I not possibly celebrate her precious life?  

November hit us hard with another hospitalization of John's father, Amy and Cody's wedding, and the loss of John's father all within a two week period.     Amy and Cody's wedding was on a Saturday and earlier that week, John's father was not able to swallow.     We knew the day was getting close to say good-bye, but on the day of her wedding, he ate breakfast.      To me, he was telling us to enjoy the day and making sure Amy and Cody had a beautiful day.    So they did and so did we.    

Three days later, he passed away.     John's family put together a beautiful collection of pictures, his siblings (he had seven out of ten that were still alive)  came from Canada, and we celebrated his life as he was laid to rest.    A sign that his daughter, Claire made read, "It's difficult to forget one who gave us so much to remember."      He was an amazing man - He loved God, he loved his wife, he loved his family, and we loved him back.   He gave us all a reason to celebrate and always will.  

There is a reason that it took me awhile to put all of this into the right words.     As 2012 rapidly comes to a close and we look towards 2013, I pray you will take the time to celebrate.     Celebrate life, celebrate one another, and celebrate every moment you have here on earth.      With 2012 just about behind our family, we still celebrate the joys and heartbreak that the year brought us.    For without the heartache, we would never know joy and all the reasons we have to celebrate.   

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Their light

After last Friday's terrible tragedy in Connecticut, it has left many people including myself feeling incredibly helpless.     My first instinct was to just pray and so that's what I did.    It did give me some comfort knowing that others were doing the same and when President Obama actually read from scripture when he addressed the people in the city of Newtown, it was my hope that all of us would receive some peace in the midst of such darkness.       

Late Saturday evening, a dear friend of mine shared with me that she had lit a candle and placed it outside to shine into heaven in rememberance of those lost in the tragedy.      I looked around my home and had the candle that was given to me when I went to All Souls Day service in our church on November 2nd in rememberance of my sweet Mother.     Now, I have to tell you that I have been lighting the candle just about every evening as I made dinner and cleaned the kitchen to have her spirit with me.     These candles are suppose to burn approximately twenty four hours.    

I lit the candle and placed it on our side stairs, said a prayer, asked God to spread his arms around these people, and then closed my eyes and thought of my Mother holding the children that were lost in her arms.     She so loved children.  

Twenty four hours later the candle was still brightly shining.     This is through wind, snow, and rain.     I never had to relight it.    

Late last night, the candle went out.    Three days and forty eight hours after it was suppose to go out, it went out.     And, then I thought, our family has lost three people this year.     My Mother, SallyAnn's Mother, and my Father-in-Law.    Three people; three days.     In the midst of a tragedy when I personally needed some peace and light, God gave it to me yet again.

I couldn't imagine the pain and anguish the families in Connecticut were going through and felt all I could do is offer a few prayers.     As I brought the candle in from outside after it went out, I felt  "Their light will forever shine in heaven" in my heart.     All of them - the three from our family and the twenty six that were lost.     In this midst of this terrible darkness, there was light.    

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas in Heaven

2012 has been a hard year with loss.      January brought the death of my sweet mother, Joyce Savory.      In August, my sister-in-law, SallyAnn lost her mother and last month, we lost my Father-in-Law, Claude Trepanier.    My Mother-in-Law found this and I felt it was worthwhile to share.    It's called Christmas in Heaven.   

I see the countless Christmas trees
Around the world below.  
With tiny lights, lke heaven't stars
Reflecting on the snow.  

The sight is so spectacular.
Please wipe away that tear,
For I am spending Christmas
With Jesus Christ this year.  

I hear the many Christmas songs
That people hold so dear,
But the sounds of music can't compare
With the Christmas choir up here.  

For I have no words to tell you
The joy their voices bring. 
For it si beyond description
To hear an angel sing.  

I know how much you miss me.
I see the pain inside your heart.
But I am not so far away.
We are really not apart.  

So be happy for me, dear ones. 
You know I hold you dear.
And be glad I spending Christmas
With Jesus Christ this year.  

I send you each a special gift
From my heavenly home above.
I send you each a memory
of my undying love.  

For after all "Love" is a gift
More precious than pure gold,
It was always more important
In the stories that Jesus told.  

So please love and help each other
As my father said to do.
For I cannot count the blessings
Of the love he has for you.  

So please have a Merry Christmas
And wipe away that tear.
For I am spending Christmas
With Jesus Christ this year.  

I can't tell you of the splendo
Of the peace here in this place.
Can you just imagine Christmas
With our Savior, face to face.  

I'll ask him to lift your spirit
As I tell him of your love. 
So then pray for one another
As your lift your eyes above. 

So please let your heart be joyful
And left your spirits sing
For I am spending Christmas in Heaven
And I am walking with the King!!