11.11.11

Fortunate

It's Remembrance Day. I've got a long list of to-do's, did my workout already, but am taking this moment to reflect. I can only do those things because there are people, past and present, whose tireless work has secured my freedoms.

This is Bud. That is not his real name - I can't remember what it is. Bud is my Gramma's (my dad's mom) love. Bud is a Veteran. He can't sleep with a clock that ticks and can no longer walk far due to foot complications from wearing army boots for a good long portion of his life. Bud is the happiest most hilarious senior citizen I know - he is happy because he knows what the alternative is. His efforts are not forgotten, not taken fore granted,  and are truly deeply appreciated.


This is the Mills family. I have known Kim and Nathan since grade 7. I can't exactly remember when they started fooling around in Barb's bedroom at parties (grade 8 maybe). But as you can see, they didn't really stop fooling around and have three beautiful children. It takes strength to be on the front lines but often forgotten is the strength to be home, with three children, relying on faith, that your husband will come home. Kim, like me, is a runner. How she has the energy is beyond my brain to qualify - Kim, you are amazing. Kim wrote this post last week and I was crying by the end. I cannot express how much gratitude I have for her family and the sacrifices they make on a daily basis. I'm working up the courage to read the rest of her Remembrance Day posts, knowing without a doubt, I will cry. 


Today I am going to count my blessings and list some of the things I am the most fortunate for.

1. My health - I rode the bike like a maniac for 75 minutes this morning. I am lucky.
2. My friends - Last week as I flailed, and they too flailed, we talked and coached each other with pep talks and rallying speeches reminding ourselves and each other that speed bumps are though a nuisance, common and controlling when we're tempted to go to fast.
3. My family - most immediately Stu and Mallory who both bring me to fits of laughter. Secondly, my mom, dad, their partners, my siblings, nieces & nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles who are ever interested in invested in the best things for us. Lastly, my Grandma (my mom's mom).

On Tuesday she lost her sister, my Aunt Gerry - who was always kind and giving to us like the best Aunt. My grandma is the sole remaining sibling of six children. My Grandma and Aunt Gerry grew up with a verbally and physically abusive mother. Was that an excuse to be an addict, beat your own kids, or think the world owes you? No. I am fortunate to have such an amazing role model in my life. My Grandma is a work horse. Let's see, she hauls the garbage to the dump, shovels snow, mows the lawn, grows a vegetable garden, then she might make a quilt, knit some mitts, sew some pjs for the great-grandkids. She takes her massive shepard cross out for a bike or walk everyday. She eats healthy foods, has the occasional beer, and generally, gets on with life. She drives across the province to watch her grandkids in sporting events. Her and Stu share a favorite saying: you can sleep when you're dead.

My Grams, Me, and Aunt Gerry
My grandma and Bud come from a generation whose attitude, drive, and humbleness are long forgotten, except by families like the Mills. If you want to be more like anyone, be more like these people, who build their life around being present, being positive, and believing in the possibilities of a better future.

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