Monday, September 17, 2012

The Color Run

 These are some of the best friends a girl could ask for. We decided to do The Color Run as a team, which really just meant we agreed to the same rules for our "race." The rules were no running or getting anything that would classify as real excersise, get as messy as possible, and take lots of pictures. We exceed our goals to say the least!
All of the websites promised an awesome time with your friends, so we were so excited to be a part of this.... So excited in fact that we didn't even mind (too much) that we had to wake up at an ungodlyhour to be race ready.
 After we arrived, we all hit up the port-a-pots 'cause we're a classy group, and then got some "before" pics which just meant we were clean.
 And then, the madness began. Each half mile there was a color station. Each station had a ton of volunteers that pelted the runners with a certain color of dyed cornstarch.
 As you moved through the race, you got plastered with more and more colors.
Here's a glimpse at the first station which was blue. Duh.

 As the race's finish line got closer and closer, the girls and I started rolling on the ground to achieve ultimate color levels, having the volunteers dump it on our heads, and pretty much acted like we hadn't been let out of the house in a few decades.
 The pink station was just a wee bit out of control.
 At the end, there was a huge party of color as eveyone had a reserve packet and threw the color into the air (or at their friend's eyeballs) at the countdown.

 We made it! This was something the girls and I will remember for a long, long time. "Fun" doesn't even describe the time we had.
 After the race, we needed cofee and food BAD. Along the way, we found two poor, unsuspecting shoe salesmen to grab a classic jump picture.This picture is absolutely one of my favorites because it captures the love and fun we have and the carefree, easy friendship that comes so naturally for us.

 None of the girls could do our normal morning coffee routine before the race for fear of poop issues during the event.We walked around downtown colored head to toe and found our beloved Starbucks.
You can imagine the pride my kids felt when they first saw me. I'm sure they were thinking, "Man, Mom, you are so cool... I hope I can be just like you when I grow up." Okay, maybe they just laughed at me. Whatever. 



Sunday, September 16, 2012

Love and a difference

Dear son,

I have considered writing this to you for a long time now. I worried I wouldn't have the words to capture exactly what I wanted to say, and then I worried even more that one day you'd read a letter from your mama and wonder. I feared that you'd wonder if you were enough, or still perfect in our eyes, or too different to be all that we could ever imagine. And, then, I decided to write this letter because I knew. I knew you wouldn't wonder about these things because I would spend every last minute reminding you that you are perfect, created purposefully, and more than enough. You will not wonder because you will know. But my sweet boy, you are different, and God made you that way by no accident. He wove you into the being you are to teach us all that being different is absolutely a gift. It reminds us that we are all unique and that beauty and intelligence can look a million different ways. It reminds us to love and accept one another. You remind me each day to be patient. You remind me to love unconditionally and to embrace the differences we all possess.

You see, baby, telling us what you want and need is hard for you. It's incredibly difficult to see you work so hard to speak, to share all of the beautiful ideas you think of, and to pronounce the words that sometimes get stuck in your sweet little mouth. You have an extremely hard time pronouncing certain sounds which makes it extremely hard for us to understand what you are saying. I suppose the hardest part about all of this is that you work so hard and are so patient with us, sometimes repeating yourself 20 times. And still, after all of that, mama has no idea. I hate that. It breaks my heart thinking about all of times you've had to repeat yourself, or thought to bring us something to give clues, or to think of another way to say something. You are getting older now, and you know. You know people don't always know what you're talking about. You know you go to therapy twice a week and, of course, it's not like we're keeping those things a secret. It just seems like I only have a certain amount of time to tell you that you're incredibly smart, incredibly gifted, and loved so much. In our time together, I want to instill in you that you are not a problem that needs to be fixed. You are always worthy of all the respect in the world. If anything, I hope you demand it always because you've put in the work. You have taught about a million people already how to love differently. You are a constant reminder to be kind, and patient, and forgiving, and accepting. Certain people are here to light the way, and you are one of them.

Son, please always know that you are so loved by so many. You are not the trouble you sometimes have with speech. You are a deserving, worthy gift that we cherish. You will have to work hard, but you know what? A little hard work is good for you, so use it as an opportunity. I will admit that it is hard to accept that you will need to show courage with this. No parent wishes to see their child struggle in any area, but whether its speech or something else, every single person has their "something" to face head on.

You have blessed our lives  more that you will ever know. Please just know, that on this journey, it is your job to hold your head up high. Remember that other's will try to bring you down and look for your differences. You are bigger. Let your heart react peacefully and let your words show your light. You are here to teach us all that while you may sound a bit different, that's okay.  In the end, we're all different, and that's a good thing. Keep shining, my angel. Stay innocent and loving and snugly and happy and tenderhearted. Don't let that fade.

See how hard you work? You should be proud of that. Your therapist and your teachers at school tell us every day how smart and friendly and well behaved you are. But, of course, we already knew that. No matter what struggles a person may deal with each day, all they can be is their best. And that is exactly what you are.... the best.