Technically, it's not Epiphany yet (that's tomorrow), so it's still Christmas! I wanted to wish all of you a very merry Christmas and a very blessed new year. My Christmas was spectacular. It really was. My faith in the Lord and my family always make it that way. This year, since my mom was nursing a broken shoulder, I got to cook. I'm not a cook - or so I thought - but I have to admit, I had fun doing it this year. I didn't make Christmas dinner, if that's what you are thinking, so get that idea out of your mind. My grandmother did that! But I did make two sausage, egg and cheese casseroles, a cherry pastry ring, a gelatin ring, cookies and corn casserole, so I did pretty good! Christmas Eve was magical, as it always is. There is nowhere else I'd rather be on Christmas Eve than in church. Nowhere! Dad preached an excellent sermon on joy. There was Silent Night sung by candlelight. There was communion. Perfect in my book. In between the 5pm and the 7pm service, I vacuumed the entire sanctuary (you wouldn't believe what a mess those candles make!). It's a preacher's kid's responsibility! I'm only kidding there. I just happened to be there, love to vacuum (I know, I'm weird) and offered to do it. Between the 7pm and the 11pm services, my family went over to my grandmother's house to eat Christmas dinner. She really out-did herself! It was wonderful. After that, it was back to church for the 11pm service. I don't have to go to every service on Christmas Eve, but I absolutely love doing so! Technically, I didn't go to the 5pm service; I arrived near the end, so I could see everyone :) But, I did go to both the 7 and 11. Christmas Day was filled with joy. My parents make every Christmas special. They just do. I can't explain it, they are just awesome parents and they make every celebration a memorable one and I am blessed to have them as parents! My gifts were awesome. I wasn't expecting anything (although I did give a list of things I wanted, I also said I didn't have to have any of the things on the list!). One of the most spectacular gifts was a walker. Yes, I know, I'm not 80 yet! But, I now have a state-of-the-art European style walker. It is in one word: AWESOME!!!!! My mom really did her homework in researching the best walkers. This walker is so cool (as walkers go!). There are no wires on the outside (this is what makes it the European style - ha!). It looks more sporty, than medical. I LOVE it!!!! The wheels on it are bigger and it makes me feel much more stable. I never in a million-billion-trillion years thought I would ever ask for a walker for Christmas, but I did and I got just what I never knew I wanted! I also got a new vacuum (see my comment above about loving to vacuum) and it's awesome! It can go on both carpet and hard floors and it has this Febreeze-like air freshener inside of it, so the room smells amazing as you're vacuuming. But above all the presents (and believe me, there were a TON of presents, all of which my mom wrapped in DIFFERENT wrapping paper: not one had the same paper!), it's my love of Jesus, His love of me, my family and my love for them and their love for me that makes Christmas so special, spectacular and filled with so much joy. The older I get, the more I realize this. It's the little moments, the unexpected moments, the looks on people's faces that I'll remember the most. But, I do LOVE my walker and my vacuum and my other gifts (just in case you didn't get that!). Another gift this Christmas and New Year's has been the fact that my walking has been pretty good. I don't know who or what to attribute that to, except to God. So, thank you, Lord for such good walking days! They aren't without a walker or cane (unless in my parent's house where their carpet is like walking on sand for me), but they have been such good days. I haven't felt off-balance or like I'm going to fall. This week it's supposed to get frigidly cold and I am not looking forward to that. I usually have lots of problems walking in that kind of weather, but who knows, maybe my gift of walking good (for me) will continue.
This year will mark 10 years since I started having the first symptoms of dystonia. I think this is a good year (in the words of Frozen!) to "let it go". To be bold and courageous. To not care what other people think about me using a walker. To go where I want to go, do what I want to do in spite of having to use a walker or cane. I'm letting go of relying on other's opinions of me to make me happy. I'm the one who has to live in my body every day, so I'm going to let go of being embarrassed by circumstances I can't control and start living life to the absolute fullest.
Ahh....the above is SO easy for me to type, but SO hard for me to actually do in real life. This is where faith in God comes in. I put my faith in Jesus. I know the Lord can do incredible things with broken people. I am certainly broken (in more ways than one!). But if He used Abraham, Moses, David, and all the rest, I know He can and will use me. So, I'm just going to "let it go" and let God take control.
I hope you all have an amazing, God-filled year ahead. Just remember (and remind me if I forget!!)...Let It Go and Let God Take Control! Happy 2015!!