Today begins the week of gratitude that I am participating in alongside Kayla. So day 1, what am I thankful for?
This is not cliche. You want to know why? Because I genuinely mean it from the bottom of my heart.
Dad: he and I have a joke that I must be his favorite because unlike the rest of my siblings, he got to choose me and he’s just stuck with my siblings! My dad isn’t my dad by DNA, he’s my dad by the unconditional love he has for me. He married my mom in August 1991 knowing that I came as part of the package, and no man on this earth has loved or cared for my mom and I as much as my dad. He has taught me how to grill, what kind of man I should marry, that my mom isn’t always right, and how to change a tire. I sure do love ya, dad!
Mom: obviously I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for you! Where do I even begin…thank you for each and every sacrifice you have made in your life since I came into it, thank you for marrying dad and showing me how to love. You have taught me to be independent and to totally rely on God, you have taught me the importance of family, loving everyone and to never judge. I learn more from you each and every day. As I get older I am already appreciating the friendship and camraderie I feel with you, you know me better than almost anyone else.
Aunt: you were there the moment I was born and have become one of the best friends I am ever going to have in my life! Nearly every amazing memory I have from my childhood goes back to you; you made growing up so much fun and allowed me to experience things that mom and dad would have never done (my first visit to KU, my first concerts, my first PG-13 movie)! I am so thankful for the relationship that we have, I have friends who even tell me they wish they had half the relationship that you and I share. I know your Puddin’ is growing up, but now we get to be grown up girl-frans and there are many adventures that still lay ahead!
Chancy: I remember the night sitting in the bathtub that mom asked me if I wanted a little brother or sister, and I eagerly said yes. Um, can we rewind 14 years?! Haha JUST KIDDING SIS!!! You know I love you…I remember seeing you when you were born, getting jealous of you having all the attention, you biting me and getting away with it, your terrible two’s that lasted forever and now you are almost fifteen, we share clothes, and you make fun of me. Honestly, I love having you as a sister. We are polar opposites, but I admire your independence and carefree attitude that I wish I could have one day out of a month. I know you won’t change who you are for anyone, and keep going at it girl. I can’t wait to see the person you’re growing into because she is going to be a total rockstar.
and last but not least (in my immediate Kansas family)
Tristan! You probably won’t read this, but just know that I feel a certain kinship with you, which goes beyond our light skin and blonde hair. I am so happy you are in our family and you bring such a light to all of us; you keep up lighthearted and fun. You know and I know that you’re going to be a preacher someday, and just hearing about your dreams and how you love Jesus at such a young age touches my heart every day. You’re the best little brother ever.