I'm grateful for the storm, made me appreciate the sun...
I'm grateful for the wrong ones, made me appreciate the right ones.
I'm grateful for the pain... everything that made me brake,
I'm thankful for all my scars... cause they only made my heart...
Grateful, grateful, grateful!"
For those of you who told me that her senior year would be a vapor, that is a gross understatement. We are now on the final stretch and college is no longer a foreign word that only old people use.
Our last journey together was right before Jacoby's 3rd Annual Run. I had asked you to show up to lend your legs for a good cause, and show up you did! The Pacific Northwest was true to its reputation; we all ran the entire race in the rain. ( Not to mention that my ENTIRE extended family spent at least 1 t 2 hours in the hot tub just to "unthaw" after the race!). There's no way to really describe how much it meant to Jacoby and our family to see everyone out in the "not so fun" elements. But it gets better. We were also able to recognize Logan Lewis, an extremely brave 14 year old boy, fighting Neuroblastoma. Both Jacoby and Logan stood out that day as the heroes they truly are. Life-changing impact is always made when people surround one another in love and support. That day was wet and cold, but absolutely beautiful. Thank you so much!
No sooner had we tucked the race madness away for another year, that Christmas came flying around the corner. And we were READY to celebrate! Knowing this was Kaleb and Jacoby's senior year, I wanted everything perfect. I desperately wanted their gifts from us to reflect our hearts; pretty sure now that's quite impossible, but we tried. Nights were spent playing the addictive game of Mexican Train, light saber wars, and ingesting pounds upon pounds of sugar, but hey... no calories count at Christmas, right?
5...4...3...2...1....HAPPY NEW YEAR... BRING ON 2016! And just like that, Jacoby was starting a new semester and talking about the beginning of gymnastics season. Some people live for the opening of elk, deer, or duck season, but not Jacoby...it's gymnastic competition season! She loves getting hyped through the younger girls she helps coach at Roach Gymnastics and her older teammates getting ready at practice. One VERY special treat she had this season was watching her best friend, Mary Jacobson, compete for Oregon State. This precious child who used to jump on the trampoline with Jacoby, compete with their pigtails flying, was now competing on TV for a D1 university. (Honestly, we always knew somehow she would...You go, girl!).
Jacoby still finds so much joy being part of her youth group and helping at AWANAS . The kids love her AND her cool wheelchair! (Ignorance is bliss, my friends!). And who could forget choir at school. She and Alex are both in different choirs and without fail, they make their mom cry EVERY single concert... music rocks!
And now for the heartaches. I left them for last, hoping that you'll remember to send up a prayer for Jacoby. As we all know, part of the excitement of being a senior is getting to relish in the fact that you will soon be leaving for a whole new world of freedom: such as college, a job, whatever it may be. As Jacoby is definitely planning on going to college, it won't be what she had dreamed of and it won't look like her twin brother's experience. As her mother, I have done what moms do, by reassuring her it will still be wonderful and full of opportunities for her. But, I know what she REALLY means. It literally breaks my heart that I can't give her what she truly wants; I know any parent would understand this grief. We are not alone, many of you have experienced life situations which were anything BUT what you wanted, but had to find the positive side of what was laid before you. Also, one of her exercise therapists , Ashan, is leaving Vertical Therapy for a dream job opportunity. She is so happy for him, but devastated over the loss of a great trainer and a great friend.
So if you have a moment, send up a prayer for her; this momma would appreciate it more than you will ever know.
With all this being said, it made me think about a conversation in "Lord of the Rings" between Gandalf and Frodo.
Frodo: I wish the ring had never come to me; I wish none of this had ever happened.
Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All you have to decide is what you are going to DO with the time that is given to you.
Heading into a busy spring, Jacoby's mindset remains the same; to trust God fully with his plan for her life even with the difficult and new transitions on the horizon. After all, how we RESPOND to life's challenges is truly all we have control over anyway, right? So... BRING IT ON!
" My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness."--
2 Corinthians 12:9