A little over 2 weeks ago my husband finally returned home from a deployment that kept him from home for a year and a half. Last week we did something I never imagined we would be able to do for our kids...we took 5 days off of life and spent it in Orlando, Florida at Disney and Universal. It was such a wonderful way to bring our family back together. We loved everything about the trip...even having the 5 of us squished together sleeping in one room was wonderful. Several times during the trip I had tears in my eyes as I shook my head in amazement at our blessings. We have come so far in so many ways. Looking back at where we have been, I just never thought this would be possible for us.
You see, although we both had college degrees and jobs, there was a time when we had to apply for public medical assistance to take care of our kids and use WIC to feed them. It was a hard choice for us to make and we didn't want to do it, but we did it for our kids....then we worked our butts off to not have to rely on it anymore. We started to get back on our feet and then Caleb was diagnosed. Cancer is not cheap...even with medical insurance. I took leave without pay so I could stay with him in the hospital and Josh went down to part time.
Between the past financial struggles, long deployments, and cancer all I ever want for our family is health, happiness, togetherness, and enough money to pay our bills and feed our kids. Thoughts of vacations have never crossed our minds...thoughts of a week at Disney never seemed attainable so it never even crossed my mind. Honestly, I am just thankful everyday our kids are healthy, everyday our family is whole, and each time I can fill our pantry and fridge with healthy things to fill their bellies. I literally get down on my knees and thank God for every normal day. Although we are comfortable now, a part of me will always remember our struggles. Those struggles have made me grateful for our everyday blessings like health, food, and shelter. Those struggles have moved me to tears of gratefulness when we can do something like we did this week: