One year ago today, the Lindquist family (minus Howie) spent the day in the emergency room of Children's Hospital where Faith was diagnosed with Intussuception after a very scary ambulance ride.
Fast forward 364 days. Oh how far we've come. Last night I had one of those moments when you just want to put your life on pause and remember exactly what it felt like to be in that scene. Rob was playing "Free Fallin" on his guitar in our bedroom. Faith was running around naked after her bath, giggling simply because she didn't have any clothes on, and Howie was resting comfortably and pain-free after his recent vet visit (more on that later). As for me, I just leaned against the wall and smiled at the sight in front of me. OK, I was singing along poorly, but that's not important. What's important is that I want that moment of intense happiness to stick with me, so that years from now I can recall how blessed we were at that moment in time. All four of us healthy. All four of us happy.
When Howie somehow hurt his back and yelped out in pain every time he moved, it made me realize how much I love that dog. And, unfortunately, how I never really appreciated the last walk we took or the last time we played fetch with his squeaky green fish in the hallway. All I wanted after he got hurt was to go back in time, not for a do-over, but to hit pause and reflect on how much I enjoy his companionship. It's unfortunate that it took him getting hurt for me to realize this, but sometimes God works in mysterious ways.
Howie is long overdue for a blogpost dedicated to him and I plan to do it on Nov. 10, the fourth anniversary of the day we brought him home, but for now I just want to appreciate his good health and my amazing four-member family.
While I don't have a picture of last night's moment in time, I do have one from a recent memory-making walk we took this summer. We left the house without an umbrella and got approximately three blocks before it started raining on us. We quickly turned around, only for it to start pouring on us. We're talking sheets. Cats and dogs. Buckets. Faith was semi-covered in her stroller, but Rob and Howie and I were target practice for those raindrops. We sprinted about a block before my shoes weighed twenty pounds and I had to stop and walk. Two drivers offered us a ride, but we declined. Trying to pack up Faith's stroller and making room for all of us in one car would've taken just as long as it did for us to walk home. By the time we arrived back at our house, we were drenched. Poor Faith was wet too since the rain found its way into her stroller while we were running. It was a Kodak moment to say the least and Rob had the mindset to take our picture. It's been my profile photo on Facebook ever since, and I smile every time I see it.
It's one of the moments I looked back on when I thought the worst was in store for Howie. I would've given anything to be able to relive that walk home again. And I promised myself I wouldn't take it for granted this time. But that's the thing about life. We can't ever go back. We are guaranteed nothing. Things can change in an instant, just like they did with Howie's health. While we still don't know exactly what the future holds for him, you can rest assured I will be hitting the pause button more often and storing those meaningful moments in my memory for safe keeping. I hope you'll do the same.