On the day I should be grateful and thankful for all the sacrifices men and women have made to give us the freedom we, and my children, have (and I am grateful, I truly am) all I can think about is the life how I knew it ceased to exist one year ago today. How sometimes I want to forget that today even exists.

One year ago today I woke up knowing what was facing me in the coming hours and I was scared. Devastated. Trembling. Feeling isolated even though I was surrounded by my brothers and their family and my Mom’s closest friends. Waiting. Waiting for the moment I never wanted to live, especially this soon. It was beyond words. Tears quietly burned my cheeks and I couldn’t breathe. The heaviness in the air was suffocating. I prayed for peace. Peace for my Mom who had an uphill fight most of her life. I prayed for it to end so she could finally be free, but at the same time, I wanted more time. I wish I could have had more time. 59 was too young.

One year ago I sat in eerie silence waiting and my world, the world I’ve always known, ceased to exist. She didn’t prepare me for this. But, how could she? I sat there for days just holding her hand and talking to her and letting Oliver hold her hand and just sitting in silence in my own thoughts. She was the first and only to get confirmation from me that we were going to expand our family hopefully in the near future. It wasn’t how I imagined I’d tell her the news or how she’d meet her newest grandchild but I made sure she got to feel his hands and hear his squeals, laughter, and cries. He loved sitting on her hospital bed and squeezing her fingers and caressing the soft blanket they brought her from home. He was so content just being there with us.

Today marks the last of the “first ______” (Birthday/Christmas/Mother’s Day/etc) without her and I can’t believe this is our reality. Feels like yesterday but at the same time, an eternity. Her greatest fear was being forgotten. That her life would be forgotten. I certainly could never forget. She taught me so much and loved me unconditionally with a force like no other. I still smile when I look down and see my bony wrist bones and crooked fingers because those came from her.

I have struggled for a long while with this post because I don’t know what to say. What I can say or what I want to say but I do know I can’t have today pass in silence from me. I remember and will always remember it all. The love, the sadness, the laughter, the uphill battles, the tears, and the happiness. They say with time comes acceptance and healing but I’m not there yet. I can’t bring myself to delete her contact off my phone. I still have her last voicemail saved on the server. I still struggle that any time now we will be welcoming her 5th grandchild into the world and she’s not here to experience it with me. I sometimes forget and think, I need to share these photos with Mom or she’d love to see this video, etc and then I remember. It all comes back. Every little conversation, decision, and memory comes back. It’s all so bittersweet.

So today I remember the single greatest Mother I had the honour to call mine and I miss her dearly. Every minute.

I will take a deep breath in and feel grateful for her knowledge and love and hold my boys just a little bit tighter and just keep on keepin’ on as we would say but today, I’m letting the grief and tears flow.

Always surrounded by love. January 16, 1955 – November 11, 2014.


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9 years

*Be forewarned, potential to be mushy*

9 years married today.

12 years together, 7 cars/Jeeps/vans, 3 apartments, 2 degrees, 3 provinces, 1 house (hopefully 2 sooner than later), 1 dog, and 3.5 kids (he he) later I wouldn’t have wanted anyone else by my side learning how to navigate this crazy thing called life that we have.

My rock, my love, my best friend, my source of endless frustration and laughter. I knew that 9 years ago today I was making the choice I was meant to make and walked down that aisle without any fear or reservation. We’ve had highs higher than highs and lows lower than lows and it’s not the end of that but somehow we are making it through. It’s been hard work and a balance and many days are struggles in one way or the other, but we are figuring out and still learning what works for us.

Your patience balances my quick temper. My shy, introverted self is balanced by your outgoing, extroverted self. I could go on and on with how we compliment each other, but I’ll spare people that. But, who else would eat the pickles or tomatoes on my burgers when they aren’t left off? And don’t forget about the nasty mushrooms I diligently pick out of meals when I don’t realize it has mushrooms. Who would eat those and make me appear to be an adult not picking around food on her plate? What would I do then because Lord knows I’d never eat it on my own and our kids would be on to me and my dislike for many things. We can’t have that! Then they would have the power. 😉

I appreciate every thing you do as a father, husband, son, and employee more than I can even put into words. I see it all. I know it’s hard but it doesn’t go un-noticed. The past 3.5 years haven’t been smooth sailing that’s for sure. It wasn’t what we had pictured or planned. We’ve had to lean on each other and re-learn how to be parents and spouses and not become one of the 80% (“They” say 80% of parents of children with special needs divorce) but we are making it.

People tell me all the time that I am “so lucky” to have the marriage and husband I have. I don’t think it’s luck. I know it’s not luck. None of this and none of the person you are is by chance. I see the sweat, tears, and pure exhaustion that can be our marriage, family, and work in & outside the home. I also see the smiles, laughter, love, and plain ol’ perfect chaos we have chosen. But none, of this is luck.

I love you.



Just as always, I take time today to re-read and share our vows.

In the presence of God and before these witnesses, I L.aura take you J.ohn to be my husband.

I will treasure our friendship, and love you today, tomorrow, and forever.

I will trust and honour you.

I will laugh and cry with you, and share my life openly and honestly with you.

I do not take you for granted, I cherish you.

I do not need you, I choose you.

I choose you today in witness of all the people who love us.

I choose you tomorrow in the privacy of our hearts.

I choose you in strength and weakness.

I choose you in health and in sickness.

I choose you in joy and in sorrow.

I will choose you, over all others, every day for all the days of my life. This is my solemn vow.


Thank you for the past 9 years and giving me the happiest and being there during the hardest days of my life.

Happy Anniversary!

Categories: 2015, family, JAA, Pics, reflection, Relationships | 1 Comment

House Hunting Frustration

We are never going to find a house. We are going to be stuck in a house that is way too small forever. At least it feels that way.

There’s only been 1 that would have been perfect but it came available in November and well, November wasn’t the time to look at/buy a house and now that ship has sailed. I sigh every time I drive past the house.

We keep waiting and looking and searching. There isn’t much in our ideal range and once you add in preferred location it’s next to nothing. Although we are open to moving to a different area, it’s just a perk if it’s in the area we hope to be. Most older houses aren’t functional for Noah and therefore can’t be added to our short-list. They have step down family rooms/dens, lots of stairs (which we have already and are trying to get away from), and/or narrow hallways and doors that make turning in the walker impossible.

It doesn’t help that I refuse to list our house until there are options because had we listed our house when we started looking we would be homeless. Then that brings the next worry, the housing market is still so hot here and every one seems to be looking for what we are so why would a seller take our offer conditional on the sale of our house when many might just be able to go for it. But there is no way I feel comfortable listing and selling before there are houses available somewhere.

We were hoping to be moved by now but this next baby is definitely going to be here before we find one I think. Moving with a newborn is not going to be fun or ideal but if it means we find “our” house I don’t mind.

We’ve been randomly looking since May of last year and started seriously looking in early this year and we are still here in the same spot without options. It’s so stressful.

The house is out there somewhere but I’m getting tired of searching and waiting and hoping. I need all the house buying (and selling) vibes one can get. So send them my way.

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