Ahhhhhhh! I LOVE spring break! Truth be told, I love any break from teaching. I work so, so hard, put in countless hours, literally burn the midnight oil, grade what feels like (and might actually be) a thousand papers, get my grades in, prepare for the next quarter...and then I get to "pause and regroup."
It's one of the many things I LOVE about being a teacher.
That "pause and regroup" comes with a huge sense of relief. Suddenly, I can take a moment to have an extra cup of coffee, kiss my darling hubby longer and hold him tighter, smile more often, and make time for the little things it is easy to take for granted.
This spring break started with an amazing trip to Seattle to see my dear friend Sharon. We laughed like silly school girls, buzzed around in her cute red convertible and just had a blast. This trip we had a late celebration for my February birthday, and Sharon treated me with such kindness and generosity that my heart overflowed with gratitude. Besides great girlfriend time, I could see sunny Seattle in all her glory with daffodils and cherry trees in full bloom. I couldn't stop smiling. I felt grateful for my friend Sharon and grateful to God for every flower and ray of sunshine.
I came back to Spokane and found some of those nearest and dearest to me with major health issues: one of Bert's best friends in a comma with heart failure, Nancy with an emergency appendix operation, Eileen with cancer back, an operation, and chemotherapy, Rog Sr. with a serious operation...the list goes on and on. I kept praying and visiting the hospital and got to know the second and fifth floors of Sacred Heart all too well.
As my dear Mom used to say, "Getting older isn't for sissies!"
Yet in all of it, I saw God's grace and love at work. I saw anew how much all of these people have blessed my life. I felt grateful to be able to sit next to them at the hospital, hold their hand, and just watch March Madness on television. One lesson played out over and over again...It's just plain easy to take people for granted. This time of visiting the hospital was a much needed reminder that we can all be gone in an instant, and we need to let others know how much they mean to us.
I need to remember that lesson on a daily basis.
So as Easter approaches, and I am aware of God's great gift in the death and resurrection of Jesus, I am again filled with so much gratitude. I am reminded again that I am loved, just as I am, that I am forgiven, and that I have a new life because of God's gift to me. What a blessing to know this kind of love.
Today, I am just so grateful...for it all!
Have a blessed Easter!