It begin with a very uneventful 12 trip from Georgia to Chicago. Some fishing for dad, Six Flags for Marlee Anne, Grace & I while Mary Elizabeth, Michala & Abe rested up from the trip. Not by themselves of course but with dad & I swapping off. You know to help keep some balance in our lives.
The anticipation of seeing old friends, meeting knew ones, loving on precious girls & being in awe of some of the most amazing siblings & parents in the world. The spirits of these people shine.
I have to say I was sad for the families that wouldn't be there this year. Some that I have come to rely on heavily through the years. Some that are so dear to our family.
Without the Aicardi Syndrome Foundation this conference would not take place every other year. Without a very hard working & dedicated conference committee this weekend wouldn't have been as wonderful as it was. From the rooms, to the meals, to the resort, the classes, childcare, the dance, entertainment, the raffles, the slide show, the speakers. I hope each of you involved in making this weekend possible felt appreciated & were thanked for all your hard work. I know it took precious time away from your families for 2 years & more. Thank you from our family to your families.
There were so many families I didn't get to talk to or meet. Just not enough time. So many precious friends I wanted to hide away in the corner with just to soak up their love to get me through 2 more years. Not enough time. Those of you I did get to love on, thank you! Thank you for refueling me to walk on. Thank you to each of you that pray for us & lift us up daily. It's truly felt.
I hesitate to mention the specific blessing throughout the weekend because I am sure to leave something out. Please forgive me if I do. Grace making the 12 hour journey with us not only to help our family out but to help the entire time in childcare. Natalie winning a raffle & sharing it with me because she knew I wanted to win it. Hugs from moms & dads who wrap their arms around you & know that no words are needed. Their hearts know. To see Marlee Anne be a child with other siblings. For her to see the awesome siblings that are older than her that have walked this journey & turned out so incredible. For Mary Elizabeth & Abe to be awesome siblings too. For Michala to be loved on & enjoy being with her Aicardi sisters. To meet our "little sister" in person & get to love on her when everyone else wasn't. For my dear friend to take the time to teach me how to knit while I was thinking our hearts are so tightly knit together. For the laughs, the tears, the deep breathes, the prayers, reassurances, Starbucks, Culvers & all those other important things in life. To be reminded that even when we feel alone on this journey God has provided someone to be with us.