Sometimes things happen that make you realize how much you take for granted. With my friend losing her belongings in a fire, a coworker losing her belongings and pets in a fire, the fire at Norlands in Maine, and the flooding in Aroostook, I am very lucky just to have a nice dry place to sleep at night - let alone a great job that allows me to pay bills and take the occasional trip to visit with good friends. More importantly, with my eyes, hearing, and ability to walk, I should be grateful when I can see somebody acting like an idiot, hear him being a jackass, and be able to walk away from the douchebag (that does apply to both males and females....but mostly males).
I do have awesome friends that accept me no matter what Strout they get that day (Spicy, Silent, Snappy, Silly, etc), what I've said to them when they were drunk, the promises I've left unfulfilled, or what my cat has done to their W-2s. They're the friends I consider family, and I hope you know who you are (hint: Witternuts) :)
And then there's The Family. Brothers that taught me the importance of siblings, things boys can do but girls really shouldn't (i.e. going completely topless when it's hot), and the necessity of tying knots well. A sister-in-law that teaches me diplomacy in family matters and being tough. Three awesome and spectacular nephews that teach me how to have fun and why childhood was great but also why I don't want to go back to it. Plus, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins ....... growing up in rural Maine, they were my social circle.
Then there's Mom and Dad. I think Mother's Day is what made me think of this stuff. My mom is the strongest, funniest, craziest, coolest woman you will ever meet. Like a lot of people with incredible smiles, she's gone through a lot of, well, crap. She could have been a horrible mother, and you could not fault her. Her own mother walked away from her when she was very young, and if it were not for my grandfather, I think Mom would have had a lot of issues throughout her life. I don't know how my mother found the strength to get past her childhood and continue to make a conscious effort to NOT be her mother (we all say we don't want to be our parents, that we can do better, but how often do we truly mean it??). Yeah, my mom's pretty special.
Then my dad. Dad who works his fingers to the bone (and joints into disrepair) to make sure we had enough to eat, a roof over our heads, and the good sense not to be total screw-ups. Besides all that, he gave us a love of agriculture that we have all managed to incorporate in our professions today. And while Mom gave us zest, Dad gave us zany. He's the funniest man I know. He is the funniest man I ever will know.
Wow. I had no idea that stuff was coming out of me today. If you made it this far, give yourself a candy bar. You earned it. Sorry if it bored you, but sometimes we all need to take a minute, breath, and really focus on what's important.
In summary - I am lucky. I am blessed. I am a great person because of my family, mostly because of my parents. The things you don't like about me, well, I blame my brothers. They really tormented me. That and Cornville. Seriously. Cornville can mess you up.
Have a great weekend everybody!!! Don't forget to call your mom!