March 2.

March entered like a lion, that’s for sure. Chilling temperatures, snow, ice. And a junky cough for Jude that had this mama a little stressed come bedtime. While he tossed and turned trying to fall asleep only to be interrupted with hard barks of a cough, his older brother and sister slumbered. I broke out the nebulizer, preparing for a long night. As I sat uncomfortably twisted up at his side, holding the breathing mask on his face and rubbing his forehead, I had double thoughts.

First and foremost was the thought of just how full my life truly is. Just the day before, Jude turned 3. We celebrated in a low key family birthday party, but sincerely enjoyed him. He is a kid full of life. Energy, smiles, ideas…I am so thankful for this growing bigger boy. And is it any accident that he was born almost exactly one year to the day after losing my dad? I think not.

And this was the second, or double thought. I remember so vividly sitting uncomfortably twisted next to another bedside, rubbing a forehead in need of greater comfort than I could give. This one, four years ago, was the last night of my dad’s life. I thought of that night, remembered his troubled breathing, groans of anticipation. What a painful night, and yet how thankful I am for that memory. It was a gift to me, really.

One year later, we were given Jude. The next year, we were given my niece, Isabel. God gives and gives. And yes, he takes away. But just like Brennan said today on Facebook, I would never wish Dad back. Can you imagine his joy right now? I dream of imagining it. I know I am promised it. No more sorrow, no more pain, no more coughs, no more struggled breaths. And do I feel full now? Yes. But I don’t think I actually know the FULL definition of full. Not yet.  But Dad? Oh, he knows it. He knows it well.



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