Dear nieces and nephews,
I’m not going to pretend that I’m okay about missing out on watching all of you raise your families and excel in your everyday lives because it upsets me more than I can say. Uncle Mark and I were hoping to be your two biggest fans as you journey through life. We’ve always loved to hear the great things you’re accomplishing and we’ve been truly amazed at how well you’re handling major events in your lives, like:
- Marrying into our family and learning all of the names of your new aunts, uncles and cousins
- Having the courage to make major career changes or taking a chance and opening your own business
- Handling a sick newborn with love and courage as you watch him endure two major heart surgeries
- Surviving tough teenage years and then growing up to excel at parenting
- Moving your family to China for three years and teaching your children to accept and adapt to a different way of life
We’ve all shared some amazing adventures together. Some of my favorites on the Lambert side have been our Florida vacations visiting Grandma and Grandpa Lambert. I can still hear all of the laughter during our flip-cup tournament with Grandma Lambert, Aunt Terry and Aunt Lila. I remember that night being beautiful and warm in Aunt Vicki and Uncle Bruce’s backyard. Everyone had so much fun. And we can’t forget about skiing in Colorado and renting that big, beautiful house on the Gulf.
One of my favorite Beckman memories was at Sara and Travis’ wedding at Crystal Mountain. Being the photographers, Uncle Mark and I had the thrill of riding to the top of the mountain on a chairlift all dressed up along with the fun bridal party. Then we danced the night away with all of you and your parents at the reception. To top the night off, everybody rode down Buck Mountain in the middle of the night on cardboard boxes, plastic shovels and garbage can lids. That night nobody was in a hurry to go back to their condos. We all bonded so well and didn’t want the night to end.
And I absolutely loved spending the weekend right before Christmas at Crystal Mountain with both the Lambert and Beckman families. It was so much fun watching our families get to know each other better.
I love how unique you all are because you each bring your own beautiful colors to our family. You have brought so much love and joy to me and it makes me sad that I’ll never be able to fully articulate how much being your aunt has meant to me.
Before I end this blog post I have three requests for all of you, my sweet nieces and nephews. First, please keep our family parties fun even if you have to pull out the Silly String or make up a silly scavenger hunt. It will be worth it. Second, please share your resources with each other, whatever they may be. Even if it’s just a little bit of your time, it can make a big difference. And third, please keep dreaming even if you are struggling. I never thought I would be able to dream again after my diagnosis but so many of my dreams have come true this past year even when I couldn’t find hope. Please keep dreaming.
You’ve made me so proud and I love you all so much.