Let's be honest: 2014 was a bad year.
It was a bad year but an important one. 2014 was one of those years where unpleasant, yet pivotal things happened all year long.
We started in early January with Anne-Marie's marathon surgery. Nearly two months to recover brought us all the way to March.
We felt all but forced to move from so many things we loved in Tacoma, so after a big parade in February (which was during the surgery recovery) and some downtime in March it was time to start packing.
But follow-up surgeries wouldn't wait, so in mid-April it was back to UWMC for us.
Three weeks after surgery we let everyone know we were moving back to Portland. Two weeks after that we found a house. The landlord wanted us to move in within three weeks.
It actually took five weeks to move in and at the beginning of July we left Pierce County for good and arrived in Vancouver , WA. 10 days later, Anne-Marie was back in Seattle for another surgery.
It was August before we resurfaced and began our aforementioned journey of church shopping.
August went well and we unpacked a lot of things and the house was really beginning to feel like a home. We decided to send the kids to kindergarten in September.
After a week and a half at her new school, Mariah got sick and made all of us sick by October. She has caught six more viruses or colds since. In fact, she's only been well a total of three weeks since September.
The kids missed all kinds of time at school, but Elisha still learned to read and Mariah still won Student of the Month for her problem solving skills.
Anne-Marie went in for her fourth surgery of 2014 in mid-November. Recovery took until Thanksgiving, the day after which, she got sick. She recovered about the time I got it and then Mariah. She was onto a completely different virus by Christmas and is nearly recovered today: December 31, 2014.
We knew this year would be hard going in. The surgery schedule has stretched out an extra year or so beyond what we had planned. Every last resource was taxed to the limit. Disappointments piled up so high, we just pushed them in the corner and forgot to be disappointed at all. We were too busy putting out fires.
But like every good story where the hero gets lost in the woods, we move on to the next chapter. Something keeps us turning the pages. I will trust God that, whether the tale is comedy or tragedy, He will write it well.