I was clueless as to what all last year would bring me in the hot July summer as I set out to the Texas Homeschool Coalition Convention last year. As their photographer, it has been an event that we have looked forward to as a family for nearly a decade now, and I have grown to love so many of the smiles – grown to be friends with so many of the people at these conventions. Last year was probably the hardest school year I’ve ever had, and I’ve had some hard ones. Real hard ones.
The weekend after the THSC Woodlands convention LAST YEAR was when I was diagnosed with cancer. That’s why THIS YEAR – this weekend, in fact – will mark a big event in my life… a year since God saved me from cancer.
Just look at these images… I had no idea that I was dying inside. My doctor said I would have not made it until Christmas if my cancer hadn’t been discovered. I was stage III and had not a single clue. I figured every homeschool mom with teens down to elementary kids was as tired as I felt, right??? Maybe they weren’t. I was pretty tired.
Anyway… I know I’ve been quiet in here since the last THSC Convention in Arlington this May (Mother’s Day Weekend), but I lost my mama the week after that one.
I seem to be on a THSC Convention streak of major events.
Yet, here I go again, packing the cameras up and heading to the Houston area in just a few days…
I already know that another major event is coming the week after THSC Woodlands this year. I’ll be dropping my eldest off for college six hours away from home and he’ll be moving out and away for the first time in his life.
Yep. Right after THSC. The exact following weekend… just like the cancer, and just like the loss of my mama.
Big events happen, though. It is only a matter of when, not if. I certainly can’t blame anything on THSC… (however, y’all, I will be stepping up the prayers).
Will you be there? Come say “Hi” if you see me. I’d love to meet you and know you’ve been praying for me and my family through this long blog hiatus and difficult school year.
Last year was certainly the very picture of me “in the trenches”. Faith in the trenches… for sure. Honestly? I’m still there. If you know me, you know I am still sharing my grief story on instagram every day, slowly leaning on the Lord to heal it all up, in more ways than one.
I’m eager to say good-bye to 2016-17 and welcome 2017-18 instead. I’m begging God for times of refreshing and celebration this year. I’ve got my new planner ready. Stickers, washi tape, and a lot of hope.
I need God to work me another miracle this year. No magic tricks.
What would I ask Him for? Continued good health, a whole lot of smiles and fun homeschooling my younger boys, for the big guy to keep his 4.0 college average, get his first full time job, and learn a lot of great life lessons that don’t involve him starving or breaking down in his car 6 hours away from home. I’d love to see my girl meet some of her goals, too.
I’m sure that my friends at the convention this coming weekend will help me get our school year started off right – with encouragement, hugs, advice, curriculum, smiles… and me taking pictures of all those cute kids and dedicated parents. It fills up my broken heart with joy to be behind the lens at THSC’s events each year.
Here’s to all the happy memories and making new ones, despite our hardships.
Here’s to 2017-18. God has this – He’s already there.