This Thanksgiving is different for me than any other Thanksgiving I've experienced. This Thanksgiving, my heart is full of sincere gratitude and thanks for the people I am surrounded by every single day. This Thanksgiving, I'm different - I've experienced more, cried more, laughed more and loved a whole lot more.
Earlier this year, I would never have thought my heart could be so full of love and thanks. This year started off as one of the worst years of my entire life. In January we learned that my husband was battling cancer - at age 35 he had stage IV tonsil cancer. It knocked us both off our feet and completely set us into a state of despair.
But I'm grateful because our friends and family recognized our desperation and need for love and support and they were there in a big way. Texts, phone calls, cards - all flooded our doors. Meals were plentiful, gift cards came pouring in, we never felt more love in all our lives. The funny thing was, this love was always all around. It just took a sort of monumental moment in our lives to have our eyes opened to this never ending love and hope that was all around.
I'm grateful this year for an amazing team of doctors and nurses that saw us through the hard times. That helped us get the right treatment, in a timely manner, and provided laughter and love along the way. Those people (you know who you are if you happen upon this post) were our salvation through the darkest hours. Those days when we both thought we would never smile again, never laugh again, you showed us that we would. And we did. We do.
I'm grateful for our amazing family. The bonds of that love and support are truly too big and too beautiful for words to describe. I love you all so much - even if I don't say it enough, I want to be sure I say it today on this day of gratitude. I love you all. Thank you for being there for us this year.
I'm grateful for our friends. You guys are the absolute best people - providing us with laughter, hope and optimism - and a ride to dance, school or gymnastics whenever needed. You didn't bat an eye. You were there for us whenever needed. Also always providing us with a laugh was sometimes the best medicine.
But most of all, I'm grateful for my amazing husband. He fought hard and was the true shining star in our lives. His strength through this storm was inspirational. Our hero - the girls and I love that you never gave up, that you pushed through when at your worst. That you fought through the pain to make it to important life events for our children. You are our hero, now and always, and I am so grateful for you.
The four of us just got back from our celebratory trip to Florida to officially celebrate the fact Jer is in remission. We know that cancer is unpredictable and each day needs to be lived to the fullest, with the happiest hearts and smiles on our faces. One additional thing I am grateful for is the fact I now truly understand that each day is gift. Each smile, each kiss, each hug, each beautiful moment is a gift that we have to celebrate, cherish and remember.