The Recap

Well, it has been a year for the West family.  Yesterday Jon asked me what I am most thankful for in the year 2013, and I said I wasn't sure.  Not because I didn't have anything to be thankful/appreciative for, but because I could not put a MOST in front of the things I was thankful/appreciative of.  Here is my list of things that took place in 2013 that I am quite proud of (and they appear in no particular order):

** Willow being a whole calendar year surgery free
** Orion's birth
** My family's health (mine included)
** Another year that Jon and I get to celebrate being together (14 year anniversary is in 6 more days)!
** Willow is an incredible big sister
** Willow is doing so freakin' well, that she is only behind in speech articulation (this from a girl who was told she had no brain)
** My work with the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation (PHF)
** My kids, and how great they are doing. Not only in school, but in life as well. Sure they have their bad days, don't we all though?

So as you can see, I have a lot of things that made 2013 great.  Now obviously, it was also a year of great change for our family too.  Jon decided to take on a full time job, which required me to work a lot less than I had ever done before.  He also continued school part time.  He is still doing both of those things, while I am now a stay at home mom!  It is the biggest change and challenge that I have embarked on.  It is taking me to places that I will be honest and say, I am out of my comfort zone.  But I think it is good to be put out of my comfort zone a bit - isn't that how we grow, after all?

With that, there are already some new things happening, or things that our family will be looking forward to, this year as well:

* Willow starts head start next week (I am about to cry, she is a bit excited about the bus ride)
* We plan to move by spring break (we will find a place we can all enjoy)
* Jonathan will be a freshman when school starts again in September (eek)
* We will be looking forward to finding out where Evan will be spending 6th grade (his first choice is Blandford like Jonathan, but his other two choices were good too)
* Orion will turn 1 this year
* I will be getting more into my work with the PHF and reaching out more than I have been
* Jon will continue with his studies for programming and possibly graduate by years end with his Associates

This year will be a great year with many new things taking place and really I look forward to what it has to offer.

On a side note, Willow did have an MRI done on Dec. 26th, we still don't know the official results of that test, her doctor returns tomorrow to the office (usually it is a surgery day spent at the hospital); so I am not sure we will even hear anything tomorrow.  But if you could all just keep her in your thoughts and prayers - I believe she had a seizure on Saturday evening and it could be shunt related.  So it is possible we will be starting this year with a surgery.

Also, help spread the word about hydrocephalus to your friends and family.  Tell one person a month, it's a small challenge, but share her story with one person you know. Tell them about the MI PHF, and the events we hold, and let them know to share the story as well. The more people who know, the better chance we have of getting more research done.


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