Saturday, November 2, 2013

Double whammy

I have always loved fall. October and November are two of my favorite months out of the year. The air is crisp and the colors of the leaves on the trees are stunning. My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. November is also a month I refer to as my double whammy. Steve's birthday is Nov. 12 and our wedding anniversary is Nov. 13. (Guess who picked the date for our wedding?) I always teased Steve that he chose that particular date so he would never forget the date of our anniversary. He never disagreed!

Now that he's gone, it's like a 1-2 punch. One day the kids and I will mark his birthday and the next day I will remember our anniversary. Without question, those are two sad days.

This year, I want to change that.

Rather than being sad that he is gone, I am trying to put a different perspective on those two days. I want to remember the good memories and celebrate the time we did have together.

We met when I was 23 ... fresh out of college and beginning my career. We dated for two years then got married on Nov. 13, 1999. During the 12 years we were together, we shared so many great times. There were some challenging times, too. With each passing year, our love grew stronger. We were blessed with three amazing children.

A funny side story - When Steve and I first talked about how many children we wanted to have, Steve said he wanted three and I said I wanted two. Steve came from a family of three children and I came from a family of two children. Made sense. Ironically, we both got what we wanted - three children through two pregnancies!

With his birthday and our anniversary approaching, I find myself focusing on time, both how time passes and how it stands still. For me and everyone around me, time has gone on. Whether we like it or not, time has passed and we've gotten older. But, time no longer passes for Steve.

Recently, I've caught myself thinking that he would be 49 this year and we'd be celebrating our 14th wedding anniversary. But, Steve won't be 49. He will always be 44. And, it won't be our 14th wedding anniversary. We were married nine years, a few months shy of our 10th anniversary. That time stands still.

Time. Does. Go. On.

I learned valuable lessons ... time is precious and life is short. It's not a lesson we should be reminded of through the death of a loved one. Since Steve died, I've vowed to continue living fully. Yes, I still get caught up in the day-to-day routine of life. But, I try to remember what's most important in life. It's about quality time with family and friends, taking care of ourselves, embracing beauty around us, getting out to do things, making memories ...

So the journey continues ...