Blessed with a capital B. (aka 1 more day in quarantine...)

(I apologize ahead of time for the formatting issues here. I can't get it to format properly, and I'm too tired to re-write this! Enjoy, but it reads like you're running a marathon...) I am sitting here in the Grand Cayman Islands, waiting for our 14 day quarantine to be over. We will report to the testing center at 8:00 a.m. on this side of the island. Then, we will have to wait for an email letting us know if we tested negative before we can remove the monitoring devices from our wrists. After that, we are free to move about the island just like we used to do pre-Covid. That means no masks, no limit to the number of people who can congregate and no worries about hugging your friends and neighbors. Life as we knew it will return to normal, at least in this tiny corner of the world.For this, we are truly blessed. HoweverI feel even more blessed than most, and I thank God every day. For many mornings during this quarantine period I have been able to sit and reflect on the life I am living and the life I once had. I am usually up before 6:00 and have been able to watch the sun as it rises. It’s spectacular, and not something I take for granted. Many mornings my mind wanders back to another life, the one that was filled with 3 busy children and hectic days trying to balance work and motherhood. It was a life filled with stress, penny-pinching, soccer games, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, Ramen Noodles, yard sales and the Goodwill. While I wouldn’t change a thing, there are many memories that still sting. I remember struggling to find money to pay for the soccer fees. I remember putting aside my pride and calling family members to ask for a bit of money for a dance class, or for flag football fees. I remember asking the kind woman in charge of the local soccer program for a discount- which she always granted me with a smile and hug. I remember waking up at 4:00 in the morning on Black Friday so I could find something to give the kids for Christmas. I remember being the only parent attending said soccer games, field hockey games and parent conferences. (But that’s all I’ll say, out of respect for Bitchy, Sassy and Golden Boy.) I also remember going downtown to the local Plasma center, hoping that I wouldn’t see anyone I knew. I would get hooked up to a machine that would take my blood and give me $50 each time I went. I could only go 2 times a month, but it sure helped. I also remember saving our aluminum cans from school and home, and driving to the can man in a nearby town to get a small amount of change. I remember taking any clothes I had that were at all decent, and selling them to the consignment shop. I remember going to yard sales looking for clothes for the kids, and things I could give them for Christmas. These are some of the tricks that many mothers probably learned, but ones I never dreamed I would have to use. But, because I would have done anything for my children, I did them without complaint and with a sense of pride that I could find ways to add to our budget. Of course I did this also because for most of that life I was the breadwinner of the family. (That would come to bite me in the ass when it was time for a divorce settlement.) Today I am incredibly thankful that Bitchy, Sassy and Golden Boy have become hard-working members of society. They have found themselves in places all around the country, and I don’t see them as much as I would like-but I am incredibly proud of who they are. I thank God every day that they don’t do drugs, that they haven’t had any issues (that I KNOW of) and that they have all been able to continue to work during this time of Covid layoffs. These days my life is filled with lots of love from my guy, plenty of travel, winters in Grand Cayman for God’s sake - and summers filled with gardening, biking, and lots of adventures. I have money in the bank, I only sell things because I have no room or need for them and not because I have to buy Ramen Noodles or hot dogs. I can sleep through the night and not worry about paying the mortgage or buying shoes and Christmas presents for the kids. Of course now that I CAN, they tell me not to!! I really do feel like Cinderella. I say this not only because I am living a life I never EVER dreamed, but also because I am truly loved. I am respected for who I am and for my accomplishments. I am told daily how much I am valued. I am hugged and treated with respect. We don’t always see eye to eye on everything and we have our moments like every other couple, but when you are secure in your relationship these moments are fleeting. My heart has found a happiness I didn’t think was possible. And now as I sit here in the Cayman Islands waiting for the sunrise, I will count my blessings once again. And that, my friends, will never, ever get old.


Gigi said...

I am SO very happy for you! You deserve all of this and more. And your children are amazing adults because YOU made sure they would be.

Unknown said...

In the words of Earl, from My Name is Earl, "Do good things and good things happen to you." You did (do) good things. Watching from the sidelines, we are always cheering you on. Enjoy! And keep sharing those pictures of those amazing experiences!!

Anonymous said...

Beautifully penned. You truly are loved.

Kalpana said...

Very happy to ready this. I have been rooting for you on the sidelines. Hoping that this happiness stays with you the rest of your life!

MIchelle said...

I love to read that good things have happened for you. You sure deserve it after all you have been through.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Vodka Mom!!!! I haven't looked at a blog in over 3 (maybe 4) years but for some reason today I circled back and stopped to see if YOU were still blogging and how life is treating you. OMG-- I am so thrilled for you. So. Thrilled. It was great to hear how happy you are, how humbled and gracious you are for your wonderful life, how full of happiness and love you are, and that your kids are all doing well. What a ride it's been. Congratulations my friend. Your wonderful life couldn't happen to a better person. xoxoxo jj

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Woman in Love said...

It is such a pleasure to read this entry. These things didn't just happen to you - you searched and worked and struggled to get them and to have them. You appreciate and are grateful which is why you will hopefully have a good life for a long while - one you deserve. Congratulations on your bravery for years.

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