Some would call me sappy. I may even get an eye roll from time to time if I put up a sentimental Facebook status message or write a blog post full of feelings. Last year I wrote “Dear Jacob” posts for my son before he was born — talking to him, and then introducing him to some of the people he would meet and that already loved him, even before he was born.
I know for a fact that there were people I mentioned in those posts that saw them and didn’t read them because they don’t care for my heart dumps. It kind of hurt my feelings…but I’m not going to stop doing it.
There are many days of the week, like every week, that I look at my husband and tell him how much I love him. Like the kind of way you might think someone would say once a year. I stop and look him in the eyes and tell him I am thankful for him. And I stop and look at our son everyday and say to Rick, “Look at him — he’s EVERYTHING. He’s perfect, he’s an answered prayer, he’s my literal dream come true.”
I watched this documentary last week about a woman who was getting IVF and in waiting for the results of the pregnancy test, and she said “If this test is positive, I don’t think I can have another bad day ever again.”
Man, did I feel that. Because everyday I look at Jacob and I truly think, I could never ask God for one more thing because Jacob is seriously the embodiment of everything.
I say this stuff pretty frequently. I tear up about my life pretty frequently. You can ask my parents — I’ve written them cards and letters and blog posts my entire life with a lot of gush, sentimental stuff about how much I love and appreciate them. You’ll find it from grade school on.
Why do I do it? After a tragedy, you always hear people say “Hug your kids” or “make sure you tell people in your life how much you love them.” You never know what tomorrow will bring, they say. But how much to people really heed this advice for longer than a few days?
I was just thinking about this watching the Chris Stapleton “Fire Away” video, that would CMA Video of the Year last night. It’s a song and video about a woman living with a mental illness — and it has a tragic end. The song gives me chills and makes me cry every time I watch it.
The truth is, I’ve lived through and with aspects of mental illness. I won’t get into the details but unlike the video, we’ve risen above it. Not by our own strength or because we are better than anyone else, but for some miraculous reason, we’ve seen the other side. Walked through it, prayed through it and despite feeling like it wasn’t possible, made it.
And everyday, I thank God for that. Everyday, I’m in awe of the strength and grace and miracle that is walking more on the outside looking in that the other way around. There’s nothing easy to understand about mental illness. It’s confusing, sneaky, irrational, literally mind-bending — and very tough to live with in a world that expects you to be normal.
That being said, yeah, I’m sappy. I’m sappy about a life I have that I always dreamed about. I’m sappy about being married to someone who loves me more than I thought a man would ever love me. I’m sappy about this beautiful baby boy that’s sleeping in his crib upstairs. I’m sappy about the fact that we cried out and God heard us and answered our prayers tenfold. The miracles of the past 6 years have been many. And I love God and I love these people in my life so much that I want to tell everyone and tell them everyday.
Being sappy, tearing up at my life, everyday may seem cheesy to some people. Even my husband might laugh at seriously sentimental I get about things, but I feel like it’s me doing life right.
If you got to the end of this post, you probably understand.