I guess there's something about a new beginning, even if it's just a plain sheet of paper now becoming filled with my words or thoughts...
This is my gratitude journal. This is where I intend to come for encouragement, for peace, for communing with God and gaining insight into myself. Like anyone else, I am facing challenges--health issues, child custody issues, underemployment, a failing marriage. Like anyone else, I experience joys--my family, my friends, my own accomplishments.
The rule for this blog is simple. Only one rule I'm establishing for now: never leave this blog without posting at least one thing I'm grateful for. I can list more than one if I want, but at least one should be written about. Life--and the experiences within it--may also be shared, but look for the gratitude. Therein I'll find the answers. At least I'm pretty sure.
So today I am grateful for my daughter. It's been a rough go lately with custody issues arising. Her birth father has appeared after nearly 15 years of silence. My husband and I gained custody of her at the age of 22 months. Suddenly he has decided he wants to be a father to her, but has told her he doesn't want to have to pay child support, so she MUST live with him, and no court will listen to her wishes. I cannot imagine the pain that kid is experiencing, hearing from this man who has never before shown an interest in her until the state decided to prosecute him for fifteen years of child support.
Last night I cried. I told her I wished I was a stronger mother, the kind of mother you see in the movies. The kind that says, "I don't care WHAT is going on, you WILL eat your wheaties and do your chores!" But I'm not. I got all caught up in the thought of losing her. I allowed myself to imagine her being taken from me, of our relationship being severed, of mourning the possibility of losing her.
What that picture lacks is the depth of gratitude I have for having raised such a devious, funny, smart little girl. She has truly challenged me on every level, not just as a mother but as a person, and I cannot imagine who I would be without her today. As she has moved into adolescence and made wild choices--both good and bad--I have worried and sighed and yelled and hugged, but always loved her with my whole heart. There are few people in the world that I can honestly say I love the way I love her. Similarly, there are few people in the world that I can honestly say I like the way I like her.
God, I am grateful for the opportunity to be this kid's mom. No matter what happens from this moment forward, I got to be her mom. From the moment this tiny little squirmy child with messy curls and a rainbow nightgown was placed in my arms to this moment, I have experienced every high and low a mother of a child could experience. Gratitude for thirteen years with this girl is huge. I am grateful for every single minute.
I love you sweet baby, and I always will. <3