New Year's Eve

New Year's Eve

(First published on CaringBridge, December 2018)

This is what it looks like when Chandler Espinoza hits the 2013 presidential inauguration ball.

As I sit here on New Year's Eve contemplating what to share with all of you who have offered such kind words and prayers and encouragement, the word that comes to mind is gratitude.

I wish I could say a specific thank you to every person who has brought snacks, gifts, cards, meals, flowers, and I could go on and on. Right now I just don't have the bandwidth to put on my Miss Manners hat and send thank you cards, but I cannot express how much each and every token of care for Chandler and for us has meant during these past two and a half weeks.

I am grateful for our family. Just no words.

I am grateful for friends who have rallied around us in so many ways. When you say, "What can I do to help?", we know you mean it. When you come and hang with us in our new living room at Mission Hospital, it soothes our soul. When you send us a reminder that you are thinking of us and praying for us, it blows some wind into our sails to move us forward through turbulent water.

I am grateful for the continuous stream of Chandler's friends who have stood at his bedside since December 15. We had no idea -- no idea -- the breadth and depth of influence our son has had thus far in his 25 years. We have always known he is a special young man, but you all have added the most vivid colors to our ever evolving portrait of the amazing man who is our son.

This weekend, a family that frequents Board & Brew came to the hospital. They told us last time they were at Board & Brew, their little girl colored a picture. Chandler took it and put it on the wall to show everyone her artwork. The other night, this sweet little girl handed us a beautiful picture she had colored especially for Chandler . It's on the wall in room 6 in surgical ICU right beside Chandler's bed.

I am grateful for every Chandler story and Chandler picture you have all blessed us with.

I am grateful for the hope, the strength, the peace, the presence of Christ. Sometimes I want to scream. Sometimes I am filled with fear. Sometimes I want to pull the covers over my head and stay there. But by the grace of God, I come back again and again to my center, my core, my foundation, and I am able to put one foot in front of the other. One minute at a time.

Chandler at inaugural party.jpg
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