I have been thinking on this and the post I NEED to write. I want the ones who read here (and the ones who don't) to know how they've touched me and how much they mean to me. One of the mom's told me she had to let Orlando be her vacation, but then jump back into her life when she got home because she didn't want to. I get that.
I did not have to come home to a RAD child in my home. My step daughter is still living with my husband who is still living at his mom's. I did invite her to something the day after Orlando and her ...whew, I don't even know what to call it anymore - her attachment issues to women, her anger at herself and others, her view that the world is against her, etc)...whatever it is reared it's ugly head and I became awful yet again for a reason I may write another day. BUT, I got to send her home with her dad and I haven't talked to her but for a minute since. I didn't come home to RAD, but I did come home to lonely. My daughter Kayla is in college and spends most of the rest of her time with her friends, my husband doesn't plan his life in a way that I get to spend much of it with him either, and I'm missing those mom's so much! I was so afraid I wasn't going to fit in. I was afraid that some of the mom's would think I didn't belong. But, yeah, that so didn't happen.
My original intent for going to Orlando was to try to lift the mom's up, try to be a blessing to them and make them happy for a few minutes with my henna or doing pedicures. I think I did that, but what I didn't know is how much I was going to be blessed. When I got home, mostly all I've been able to say about Orlando is that it was the BEST WEEKEND of my LIFE! I had met a few of the mom's before we went, Rachel (some people know her as tudusamom, who I get to see next month too - WOOHOO!), Courtney and Pat (who is a long time very dear friend). From them I knew these women would be amazing. I did. I knew it in my heart. But. Oh my gosh, in real life, I am B.L.O.W.N. A.W.A.Y! Completely.
These women are warriors. They are amazing. They are kind. They are compassionate. They are beautiful. They are funny. They give everything of themselves, on days I can hardly imagine, and then get up the next day and do it again. They love their kids in a way most people will never have to even think of - even when that means they have to love them from somewhere else because that is what is best for their son or daughter. They love without ceasing, even in isolation when their family, friends and health care providers turn their back or don't understand. They love even when love is not enough. They love even when they can't like their children. They are the reason their kids have hope. They are the reason when they find healing. They are H.E.R.O.E.S! They are MY Heroes. They shared that love with me and I love them right back! I am blessed BEYOND MEASURE.
Ladies, if no one told you they loved you today - if you have been hated on, head-butted, screamed at, kicked, hit, threatened and the many other things some of you deal with every day, I want you to know, deep down where it counts, I LOVE YOU! You are all a part of my heart now and I'm not letting go. I can't wait to see you next year and I hope to see as many of you as I can before then!