The Twelve Blogs of Christmas: 2014

Image 52014 has been tough.

2014 was the year we lost three houses we tried to buy – including a ‘dream home’. It was the year we had to put our home life on hold after making an offer in January – not to complete a purchase until the end of November.

2014 was the year stamp duty changed and we completed on our new home just before the new rate. It was the year we paid £10,000 more because we missed the change by a week and a half.

2014 was the year the banks changed their lending criteria making it almost impossible for me to run my company through absolutely no fault of my own. It is the year when I have been forced to reconsider my future.

2014 was the year our son’s older sister’s placement broke down and we had to turn down taking on a third child as we felt it could destabilise the boys and threaten the family we feel we are still building. It was the year we had to make a decision that we know our sons could resent us for in the future.

2014 was the year that our cat died, it was the year that we lost our beloved pet of almost 14 years.

2014 was the year my brother went into hospital and stayed for over 8 months. It was the year he was diagnosed with a very rare blood disorder – complicated by an even rarer secondary disorder – and had treatment that 1 in 5 simply don’t survive.

2014 was the year that mid way through his treatment my brother picked up an extremely rare infection that attacked his spine and resulted in total paralyses from the waist down. it was the year that we thought he would never walk again.

2014 was the year our sister died, it was the year the cancer really took hold and we had to watch it eating away at her until her untimely end.

2014 was the year I had to collect my paralysed brother from his hospital bed and drive him over 2 hrs to say goodbye to our dying sister who he had been unable to see for months. It was also the year when it was impossible to have my brother with me at our sisters funeral.

2014 was the year my widowed father lost his daughter and almost lost his son. It took the wind out of his sails, and has taken away a big chunk of the reason he has to get up in the morning and has left him a broken man. It was the year he has became more reliant on me.

Putting it bluntly – 2014 has been the worse year of my life.

However – 2014 started 1 year and 3 months into us being a family.

2014 had –

365 days that started and ended with kisses and cuddles from our 2 amazing sons.

365 days when our sons have given us the need and indeed the reason to smile.

365 days when we had to put them first regardless.

365 days when we had to put on a brave face and to protect them from the difficulties and the sadness around them.

365 days of our sons giving us perspective.

365 days of our sons making it ‘all alright’.

365 days of us loving the wonder of being parents.

365 days of love – So very much love.

Maybe 2014 wasn’t so bad after all.

However –

Here’s to 2015.

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