Last weekend was our Reclaim the Date party and it was everything I hoped it would be. Lots of family, so many friends, and we threw in Pistol Pete for good measure. Everyone who came mattered to me: our families, friends who drove in from different cities and states, Shep’s swim teacher and his nurse from Tulsa…everyone there contributed in making this year move forward for us. We had a blast seeing them all in one place, meeting each other, making connections, and enjoying life.
I felt like I was at a wedding, I couldn’t move around fast enough, greeting, hugging, catching up. I was in heaven. Erron and I agreed, it was a perfect day.
The next morning, Father’s Day, and the actual one-year anniversary of Shepherd’s accident, the four of us drove down to Great Wolf Lodge and spent the rest of the weekend playing in the water. I’d like to say it was just as dreamy as our party, but reality kicked in and that actual day was a little more…complicated. Erron and I let the kids go down one of the big slides. In a last minute change-up, I went first, Erron sent down the littles one by one, then was to follow behind. As soon as I got to my feet I turned and prepared to catch Charlotte, who was “iffy” about going down in the first place. Looking up, I saw Erron gesturing from the top of the slide, clearly pointing down, but I second guessed, and thought maybe he needed me to come get a terrified Char from the top of the stairs. I moved a few feet away from the slide, and missed her. I turned around to check the slide again just in time to see a stranger helping her out of the chute; she was scared and confused, caught near the jets. My heart sank and I rushed to get to her. Erron was frustrated; without telling me, he’d foreseen a similar scenario play out in his head and wanted to be the first to go down. He also couldn’t comprehend how I miss-read his cues when they were so obvious. I was….how shall I say… I was not pleased. I felt like I’d repeated a really bad day all over again on a much smaller scale and to say I was ticked would be underselling it a bit. However, we recovered…we worked it out, moved on and enjoyed the rest of our time there. Great Wolf did not disappoint.
And that’s how it goes. Erron and I aren’t perfect and neither is life, but this weekend served its purpose. We had fun in the water, we gave thanks, and we showed June 21st who’s in charge. We survived one hell of a year, thanks to incredibly supportive families, rock star friends, and some amazing people we’d never known before this journey started. Our faith that God is as good as He says He is has been tested, and proven true. Hitting the one-year mark doesn’t magically make all hard feelings about what happened go away, our slide experience is proof of that. But it has brought lots of perspective…we are all together, we have everything to be thankful for and we believe we can handle whatever life has to offer. It’s time to just enjoy the ride.