Wednesday, November 24, 2010

50 things I am thankful for...

I have so much to be thankful for this year, here are just a few ;-). Keep in mind these are in no particular order.

  1. First and foremost, Charlotte's repaired heart.
  2. My husband. See my post from November 9th. He is fantastic. 
  3. The way Will still holds my thumb for comfort and is the most affectionate 3 year-old one could ask for.
  4.  My spunky, bright, red-headed daughter who keeps me on my toes.
  5. Chocolate. What can I say, I am a stress eater...and this year has been stressful.
  6. Missy. She gets me. 'Nough said. 
  7. Charlotte's smiles. They light up a room and bring tears to my eyes. 
  8. My mom for baby-sitting just about every Saturday night from the time Charlotte was born until now, in order for Mike and I to have time for "us" during the an extremely stressful time.
  9. My kickboxing instructor (Kate) who tries her darnest to counteract the effects of my chocolate habit.
  10. Mike's job, which allows me to stay home with our children. 
  11. My dad for taking Will (and Katherine) to nature classes every month. They love spending time with their Papa. 
  12. St. John's preschool for providing a caring and structured learning environment for Katherine and Will. Their five teachers are fantastic and were particularly wonderful before, during, and after Charlotte's surgery. 
  13. Children's hospital for providing outstanding care for Charlotte.
  14. Every single person who has prayed for Charlotte during the past 6 months. 
  15. My playgroup for providing me moral support and help with my children.
  16. My little brother Paul, who the day after Charlotte's Down syndrome diagnosis called to tell me that "people with special needs bring out the best in everyone, and Charlotte will do that for our family." That statement still resonates with me almost 6 months later.
  17. Kate and Bill for throwing Katherine and Will a grand birthday party weeks before Charlotte's surgery--it was exactly what we all needed. 
  18. My in-laws, who despite the distance, have done everything in their power to make life a little bit easier for Mike and I. 
  19. The bond that Katherine and Will have formed with their little sister. I hope this continues forever. 
  20. The fact that despite her heart defect, Charlotte was relatively healthy for the four months before her surgery.
  21. For Will's ability to make me smile every time I ask him a question and he responds "great."
  22. My friend Sarah Halon, who I see so infrequently, yet I feel so close to.
  23. For Charlotte's fantastic sleeping habits. 
  24. My sister-in-law Erin, who I can bounce my PT questions off of...
  25. Andrew and Christine for taking Katherine many overnights this year. 
  26. Each person who came to Katherine and Will's birthday party and still haven't received thank yous because they are sitting on my kitchen counter (two months later). I promise you'll get them soon. 
  27. My mom and Kate for cleaning my house and filling my fridge the day Charlotte came home for the hospital.
  28. For the friends and family as well as perfect strangers who made meals for us and/or send cards/gift cards during and after Charlotte's surgery. 
  29. For Charlotte being born during a time when those with special needs are for the most part accepted into society...this doesn't mean we won't have to advocate for her, but it is so much better than it was 20 years ago. 
  30. Sammy for making me smile every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Alright!
  31. My tutoring clients who have stuck with me the past few months, most the past 4 years! 
  32. Facebook (I know, I know...nuts, right?) for keeping me in contact with so many people! 
  33. Charlotte's ability to breastfeed despite what all the "medical professionals" told me after she was born. She is a rockstar.
  34. My children for reminding me what it is like to be a kid. 
  35. Missy, my mom, and Kate for rearranging their lives to watch Katherine and Will during Charlotte's bizillion doctor's appointments. 
  36. My neighbor Melissa for the moral support. It is so nice to have someone who, though our situations are different, does truly understands what I am going through. 
  37. Every person who has left a comment on here, sent me an email, or left me a facebook message. I can't tell you how much they have helped! 
  38. The patience and understanding from family and friends each time I fail to return a phone call, send an email, or forget a birthday. I promise this will get better in the months to come.
  39. Those who donated blood in honor of Charlotte, as well as those who raised money and walked as a part of Charlotte's web.
  40. The Baby Center Community "Down syndrome" message board and "Babies/Children with heart problems" message board...I have learned so much from other parents going through the exact same thing.
  41. Charlotte's complaining. She doesn't cry often, just complains. I love it. 
  42. Everyone who tells me what Charlotte can do, not what she can't.
  43. Tuesday afternoons watching DWTS with Katherine. She is quite the dancer. 
  44. Dr. Tweddell for fixing Charlotte's heart.
  45. Health insurance. 'Nough said.
  46. Every person who went and went online and researched Down syndrome, read a book or an article, or made an effort to understand what we were/are going through. This means so much to us. 
  47. McDonald's 49 cent ice cream cones. They aren't chocolate, but what a great, cheap treat! 
  48. Coffee Wednesdays. I look forward to it every week. ;-)
  49. Lazy weekend mornings; drinking coffee with my husband, eating pancakes with my kids, and nursing my baby....just being normal, since for so long nothing seemed normal.
  50. For you. The person reading this. Thank you, thank you, thank you. 

So, in a nutshell, I am pretty dang lucky. My family, my friends, my health, my children's much to be thankful for this year...

I leave you with a little glimpse of what makes me smile every night.

Happy Thanksgiving!


  1. Yes, we have so much to be thankful for. All the support from family and friends really helped on those difficult days. Thank you, Emily for doing this blog and sharing your thoughts and feelings. You are a very special daughter and we love you so very much!!

  2. I love this post! 'Nough said. :)

  3. Emily, you rock as a wife, mother, daughter, sister, grandaughter, friend and niece. I am thankful to have you in my life and so enjoy the relationship we have. I love you my fellow vegetarian and kickboxer! You are a true angel and make my life special.

  4. Totally crying over here after reading this, thank you for sharing your many blessings!! Happy Thanksgiving to you all, even though I don't see you that often anymore, I think of you all the time and am happy to be your friend!

  5. Emily,
    I just wrote a comment but it disappeared into cyber space so perhaps all the thanking I did for your thanking is supposed to reach someone else....well, who knows? Anyway, I was thanking you for your generosity of time to send pictures, post all the things you are thankful for, and I am feeling blessed by you and your wonderful family in just reading through the 50 things.

  6. Thanks for including me on your list:) I am putting together a list of core exercises to try with the little princess...let me know if you have any other questions that I may be able to help in any way:)


We love comments!!