On this third day into the New Year I am reflecting on 2013 and some of the moments that really defined the year for me personally. So, here they are.
1. My Son’s Birth
February 22nd I gave birth to my fourth child and first little boy. We had chosen not to find out his gender. After he was born, my husband started laughing. I hadn’t seen if I had just had a boy or a girl yet so I was asking him “what is it, what is it?” completely expecting his laughter to mean we just had our fourth daughter. He said “It’s a boy!” And the tears just started streaming down my face. I was so happy to meet the baby I had felt moving around in my belly, and to experience having a son for the first time. It was really wonderful and that little boy continues to be a joy every single day.
2. Enrollment in the Brown Scapular
In September my husband and I were enrolled by our parish priest to the Brown Scapular. A little background if this sounds foreign to you – way back in 1251 The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St. Simon Stock, Superior General of the Carmelite Order. She held the brown scapular in her hand and gave a promise: “Take this scapular, it shall be a sign of salvation, a protection in danger and a pledge of peace. Whosoever dies wearing this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire.” Wearing the scapular comes with a devotion to Mary, meaning a daily rosary. When a sweet friend of mine first presented the idea of being enrolled in the scapular, I didn’t think I would do it. My thought was a daily rosary? Ha! I don’t even have time for a daily shower! So I did not plan on participating in this. Really, I didn’t. However, shortly after that, after a stressful day, I decided to pray the rosary with the hope it would make me feel a little better. It did, so I repeated the next day. And the next. Before I knew it I was praying a daily rosary and hadn’t actually made a decision to do so. It just happened. I then knew that not only could I continue on and be enrolled in Brown Scapular, I was supposed to be. My husband decided to participate with me, and now all I can say is that it’s been life changing. I dare anyone who doesn’t already pray the rosary daily to try it out for a while. You’ll see what I mean!
3. The officer-involved-shooting
I had a call one evening from my husband about a half hour before he was due to get off work. I thought maybe he was calling to tell me he had a late call, which often happens, and he wouldn’t be home on time. All I heard from him was “I’m okay, but I’ve been involved in a shooting. I will call again when I can.” I know he said it, but all I could say was “You’re okay?” and he said it again “I’m okay, but have to go, I’ll call again when I can.” I can’t exactly explain the way I felt after that call. Luckily my girls had just been picked up from my mother-in-law, so I just had my son with me. I began searching the internet for local news and was trying to find a television station with news on so I could find out what happened. I called his mother right away to tell her about his call. And I waited anxiously for him to call again.
Without getting into what happened, I’ll just say that everything was okay. My husband did exactly as he was trained to do. My husband wasn’t hurt in any way. The man that was shot survived. As far as officer-involved-shootings, you really couldn’t ask for a better outcome.
It was the moment he drove up that night that I can’t forget. He finally came home about eight hours after that first phone call. I was waiting on the porch for him. Seeing him get out of his truck, and hugging him, feeling his bullet proof vest under his uniform, I just felt so incredibly grateful. It is common knowledge that cops are sometimes shot at and not all of them make it home. I thanked God for bringing my husband home that night. I have always known that my husband has a dangerous job, but before this I never allowed my mind to explore the possibilities that could occur on any of his work days. Now, inevitably, I pray even harder for him. I pray more for other first responders as well. And I thank God for my husband. Our fights and imperfections as a couple are a lot less significant now and my desire to be a good wife to him is greater. Perspective is a funny thing.
Needless to say, 2013 was an eventful year. I could write more about the year, because I also turned 30, and signed a contract for my first book deal. However the above moments held more weight for me.
2014 will be another full year, I am sure of this. I have so much to look forward to.
Until next time….