My Mom and me...
This was taken near the end, right after she had finished opening her presents. I would like to say our eyes are naturally sparkly, but no...we both had tears. (The invites said "Hat and gloves are encouraged, but not required." Of course, I had to wear one of my thrifty finds.)
I love my Mom, really, really love her. She is such a remarkable woman. I could do an entire post about her strength and faith.
Some background... my Dad was an alcoholic for the first 17 years of my life. My senior year in high school he had an accident and my Mom gave him an ultimatum..."stop drinking or I start divorce proceedings tomorrow." This was said to him in the emergency room. Thank God (seriously -- Thank you GOD!) no one else was involved in the accident...and thank God (again, seriously) that someone saw my Dad's headlights in the woods on another road, or he would not have made it out of that accident alive. Long story short...he quit drinking that night and never .... EVER .... touched another drop of alcohol for the rest of his life. I loved my Dad, in spite of his drinking.... but afterwards... he became a totally new person - in part due to not drinking, but mostly after he gave his life to Jesus within that next year. Sadly, he was a smoker. And we just didn't harp on the smoking after his accident. We were too thrilled to have him stone-cold-sober. Unfortunately, the smoking caught up to him and in August of 2002 we lost him to lung cancer. SMOKING KILLS PEOPLE!!! Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. (Eleven days after we buried my Father, we buried my Grandfather..my Mom's father...he died from emphysema ... yes, from smoking!)
Now, ten years later, my Mom has found someone else to share her life with. I couldn't be happier. My Dad told her, just before his passing, that he didn't want her to be alone for the rest of her life. He gave her his blessing to go on and live and love. It chokes me up every time I think about this. They were only 55 when he died. I know my Dad is beyond happy for her (I keep passing him messages through God, just to keep him in the loop -- not that he isn't keeping an eye on things for himself). I'm beyond happy for her. She will also retire in May and she will have someone who loves her, right there beside her, to enjoy this next chapter of her life. Don is a wonderful man, a man of God... exactly the right kind of man I was praying for to come along and sweep her up. And I just know that he and my Dad would have gotten along famously.
God bless Susan and Don, on their soon-to-be married life together!