For the month of November, I have gone back and forth, counted votes and suggestions through emails, facebook comments, texts and calls. Here is what I have decided... I have no idea what to do for the month of November. I wanted to choose something that would keep everyone super involved and excited and inspired... but, the bottom line is that I am not that interesting. I am a story-teller, yes, and I am passionate about sharing my life and struggles with other people, but it is really all pointless if there is no bigger purpose behind it. I don't have any interest in telling all my deep, dark secrets in such a public way... if it does not inspire transformation. So, I am going to spend the next 30 days reflecting on the things I am most thankful for, but I don't want to stop there... I want to MOVE in some sort of responsive ACTION. Here's the thing though, I want you to come with me this time.
First I am going to tell you what I am going to do, and then I want you to think about what you are going to do. Our generation has been accused of being major slackers. Let's be honest, we are a shortcuttin' people are we not??? So, there is a part of that accusation that is true. When we actually try to stand up for something, people have called it "slacktivism." (It is such a clever insult, I can't even hate on it.) But, I would like us to try and prove this to be untrue.
I will continue to pour out my heart, openly share my struggles, and take comedic jabs at my poor husband... but, only if you guys join me. Well, leave the Tom-jabbing to me, but other than that... this is an "all-skate" as my pastor would say. It is audience participation time!! Get. on. board.
So, Day 1. I am overwhelmingly thankful for my mother today. I cannot bear to spend more than a few moments at a time thinking of how she felt 20 years ago today, when she had to come home and tell us that Adam was gone. I remember each slow-motion moment, and I hope that I never have to dream of being as strong as she has been.
As I shared before, I was dressed as my brother for Halloween the year that he was killed, and I came home and took off his warm-ups and sat down in his wrestling singlet and ate candy until I was about to vomit. The next morning, when my mom and sister (Kristin) and her, then, fiancee (Joe) came home from the hospital, Adam's warm-ups were still on the floor. As clearly as if it happened this morning, I can remember my mother seeing that little pile of Adam's clothes, crumpled from when his baby sister stepped out of them the night before, and asking Joe (with her sad eyes and one small movement of her hand) to take them away.
In a moment that a mother's pain could so easily have drifted her away to another world... she stayed there in the most painful moment of her life, so she could try to protect my sister (BethAnn) and I. Nothing could have softened that moment that we learned that Adam would never come home, but the fact that my mom tried, makes her the most amazing woman on planet earth.
I am so proud of who my mom is, and how she has faithfully served God and ministered to the souls of other woman who have lost their children. She is funny and ridiculous and she taught me that it is better to stand out for being yourself than to blend in by pretending you are somebody that you're not. She was the primary influence in me becoming who I am. The original Hurricane Sandi, my mother and friend, and also my hero.
(Besides Norm Green.)
So, here is what I am going to do. I am going to publicly declare that my mother was always right. There is truly nothing else that I could do that would make her happier. You, Mom, were right about everything. I will also call her to say thank you for every dime she spent on me, and every prayer she prayed over me, and every tournament she drove me to. I will thank her for the surprise outings she took us on (except for that one time where she was like "surprise, it's a horrible musical!") I will thank her for letting me check out as many audio casette/books in those huge ziplock bags from the library as I wanted. I will thank her for being her, and for letting me be me.
Now, it's your turn... time to call yo mama... or someone who plays a motherly role in your life, and tell her why you are thankful for her. Then, share your story in the comment thread below. Take it from me... we are all in this together, and when you think you are telling your own story, you are probably telling someone else's too. So, let's spend this month giving thanks together and sharing our stories with each other, and for each other.