This time last year, my husband was standing on a rocky beach in White Rock, waiting to dash into the freezing Pacific Ocean for an annual “Polar Bear Swim.” My family and I stood a few feet away from a swimsuit clad crowd who were busy dancing around, trying to stay warm while waiting for the signal to dive in. A horn sounded without warning and confusion reigned as towels and sweatpants were tossed aside. Leading the way was a tall, red headed, Swede (he prefers to be called Viking Warrior). A couple hundred thrill seekers splashed in after him, paramedics on the standby, and my family giggled from the warmth of our winter coats as everyone scrambled to get back out of the ocean.
Most of the year revolved around pregnancy and the birth of our twin boys. Thinking about the beginning of the year brings flashbacks to morning sickness and other “fun” first trimester symptoms. However, one of my favourite pregnancy memories was at 19 weeks. I’d been feeling little flutters of movement for the previous three weeks but Andreas had yet to feel anything. Sitting on the couch, I placed Andreas’ hand against my belly, “Here, someone’s moving.” Andreas laid his head against the spot to listen. WHAM. A well timed kick straight into his ear – the biggest movement I had felt yet, the first of many, and Andreas was right there with me to experience it!
For the July long weekend, Andreas, my parents and I spent a couple days at my Grandparents’ summer cabin in the Okanagan. Dad’s irrational fear of frogs provided laughs as I (in all my pregnant glory) chased him around the yard with a little, webbed fellow. Who knew dad could sprint so fast? That weekend was Andreas’ and my last little getaway of the summer: ice cream cones the size of our heads, mini-golf under a BLAZING sun, a Canada Day parade, quick dips into the lake to ease swollen ankles, walks around the point and two boys unknowingly experiencing their first visit to the Lake Home.
The boys were born at the end of July and after spending five and a half weeks in the hospital, Alistair was given permission to come home on September 1! (Just in time for Andreas to leave on a three day business trip!) Whenever I think of Ali’s stay in the NICU, I’m beyond relieved to have him home with us. It feels like forever when you’re separated from your baby but the joy at having him home is indescribable. I’m thankful for early morning baby snuggles, late night feeds from the comfort of home and Ali’s giant, toothless grins.
Doctors visits and babies, roadtrips and weddings, hospitals and funerals, diapers and baby bottles. I’m thankful for God’s provision this past year, for the children He’s given and the family and friends He’s blessed us with. I look forward to this new year, to see what new and unexpected adventures lie ahead. We travel slowly along the path that God has laid underneath our feet, clinging to his steadfast mercy and trusting Him to guide our steps.