Sunday, October 2, 2016

A final blog post for now

Almost 13 years ago, I started a website built by my ex-husband to chronicle the life of our newborn baby.  We posted pictures of her that let me stare at her face when I returned to work after my maternity leave was over.  In May 2004, the focus of the site shifted to an online journal to write about the daily struggles with her leukemia and eventually, her death.  

Though it has changed names a few times, I kept the blog going for 11 years.  However, I haven't written once in over a year.  For this, I am deeply apologetic.  I've read the comments from past readers accusing me of not caring or of not being a sincere person because of it. That's fine, think what you must.  

The truth is, I got stuck with writing.  I've started multiple blog posts before today to say a goodbye.  It's not that my story or life is done or so perfect that I no longer need a blog.  It's that I no longer feel like this is a safe zone to post things.  Posts that I have done have been thrown back at me, even used as a threat.  Something I wrote about my blended family got misconstrued and there were hurt feelings.  There were situations I would have liked to write about but I felt that I couldn't either due to the confidentiality for that family member or because I did not want to have backlash from the other side.  

These are excuses, I know.  I should have at least taken the time to write.  I'm sorry.  

Life is good right now.  It's busy, that's for sure.  We have two kids in braces and a third going in to braces, so I am doing a lot of extra tutoring to make side money for the family.  The girls are all still extremely involved with theatre as I am as a volunteer for them.  I have show managed four shows and we started my fifth to show manager this past month, Annie Jr.  Maggie is Kate, one of the main orphans, and Katie is Sandy the Dog as well as Mrs. Pugh.  They love it.  It takes up the majority of our free time, but the girls love being at the theatre.  All their best friendships have developed at the theatre, so it has become a large part of their social life as well.

Maggie is now in the 5th grade and Katie is in the 1st.  My stepdaughters are in 9th grade and the oldest started college at a small Christian university, The King's University, in Texas.  Out of respect to them, I will not blog further about them, but I will say I'm thankful they are in my life in some way.  Katie is big into karate and just test for her junior green belt.  She is ecstatic because that means sparring now.  We go to the gym for karate three times a week.  Katie is just as energetic and wild as ever, but she remains the funniest person I've ever met in my life. Maggie is on her 10th major production with North Texas Performing Arts and loves every minute of being on stage.  She is our head in the clouds sweetheart who is often doing more daydreaming than anything else.  Maggie is in choir at school once a week after school and takes voice lessons as well.  See, they are BUSY! I'm basically a taxi service on a daily basis.

I'm still at my school and loving it.  I teach five French classes a day and one leadership class.  It's perfect for me.  I'm always working and usually have more plates to juggle, but the job is what I want.  One day, I hope to go back to school and get my Master's in Education Administration.  Yep, I want to be a principal one day.  Preferably for middle school.

Rob and I are doing great together.  We both volunteer as youth leaders for our church on Wednesday nights.  I'm so thankful for Rob and his influence on my spiritual growth.  When we first started dating, I knew he was going to church, but I didn't go.  He didn't ask or pressure.  Six months into our dating, I asked to go along with him.  I cried throughout the entire service since the sermon was titled "The Hurt Pocket" and focused on life's hurts that keep us from having a relationship with God.  I began attending with him, but I was still nervous.  Four years ago, I rededicated my life as a Christian.  Two years ago, we felt called to serve as leaders.  Rob and I faithfully attend Wednesday night service each week with the students.  He is now leading 12th graders and I have 9th graders who I have been with since they were in 7th grade.  We love it.  It has been such a blessing for our family and our marriage to serve in this way.  Last Sunday, I was baptized again.  Our youth pastor baptized me with Rob, Maggie, and Katie standing alongside.  Cleansing in so many ways.

Our future will keep us here in the area for many years to come.  The girls are happy in their school.  Maggie even starts at my middle school next year.  I can't even begin to fathom that my girl will be a middle schooler.

There will be hard times for us, for that we can be certain.  There will be times I wish I could come back to this blog to write, but I fear that what I would write could be used against me as it has in the past.  I won't blog anymore, but I will always be thankful for the years I had this site.  I'm grateful to everyone who has read along the way.  

With gratitude,