It was a whirlwind of a holiday season...but we made it!



Because of the holidays, we had to fit a week’s worth of patient visits in to three days, and we had to try and keep track of what day it actually was...not an easy task! I literally walked in to three different rooms and greeted patients with a “Happy Monday!” salutation, when in reality it was Friday, Jan. 2. Oh well, it was worth a good laugh.
I had so many memories from this holiday season, but I’ll keep it short and just share three...OK, maybe four.
1—Estelle, my firecracker of a daughter, turned 8 on Jan. 8. She goes to sleep smiling and wakes up the same way. I hope to be more like her in the future. She also has her first love/first boyfriend, and his name is Jack. Jack is the horse that she takes care of and rides at Sundance Farms, located just outside of Plymouth. I have an irrational fear of horses and cows, and being kicked by them, so this has been an adjustment for me to be so close to these beasts.
All joking aside, Estelle and Jack are a match, and I have learned that all I really need to stay on his good side is a pocket full of treats. Time sitting and watching Estelle and Jack together has taught me patience, serenity, and improved my ability to just stay in the moment. We often worry way too much about the future, and feel too much guilt about the past, and in the meantime, we miss out on those present moments, watching a girl and a horse.
2—I coach my son’s basketball team. Over break we were on our way to Howards Grove for games. We happened to pass a garage on CTH J between Plymouth and Elkhart Lake that is owned by a family friend. I spent many hours as a young boy walking around in the woods around that garage. In fact, my first-ever trip hunting was with my Uncle Bill in those woods. I remember it like it was yesterday.
Anyways, on this particular Saturday, as we drove past that garage on the way to basketball, I mentioned to my son, Edwin, that I spent a lot of Saturdays in those woods. I told him about how his Grandpa Giebler would take me out there. I’d explore, and Grandpa would talk to Mark (the owner) and Uncle Bill about cars, and racing, and politics, and whatever else. But mostly about cars and racing.
Eddy replied, “Cars and racing—yep, that sounds like Grandpa!” Then Eddy told me about a joke that he hears his Grandpa tell people. A lot. Eddy said, “Whenever I’m with Grandpa and we are leaving someplace, he’ll tell somebody, “If you’re driving, don’t forget your car!”
As he told me that quote, I finished the sentence with him. Apparently that joke, from my dad, is two generations old. I loved that moment. I just smiled and was reminded to be thankful for that exact moment.
3—Emerin, the 3-year-old, is quite the character. One fun quirk of hers is that she does not use the word “today.” Instead, she refers to it as “this day.” It’s a treat in the mornings, when she’ll make her way downstairs, and then see me in non-work clothes, and ask, “Dida, you don’t need to work this day?”
Having a couple extra days off in the holidays made those mornings a bit more frequent, and they sure were fun! Emerin loves to be outside, and is loving the winter weather. She asks me every time if I can take her on a “hike.” In Emerin’s mind, a “hike” is when we go sledding. And in Emerin’s mind, “sledding” is her running down the hill as fast as her legs allow it, then falling over at the bottom, then having me haul her back to the top of the hill in the sled. In four or five sledding adventures, she is still yet to actually go down the hill on a sled. She prefers to run. And, in turn, I get some hill repeats in for my daily workout!
4—My kids’ mom is what holds all of this together. Ellie deserves the most admiration. Somehow everything gets done, and the clothes are clean and dry, and she still finds time to take care of herself along the way as well. She even checks in with me on occasion to make sure I’m keeping some semblance of sanity along the way...no easy task with me.
Anyways, I’m so thankful for the holiday season, and for the health that the family has had. It’s not ever an “easy” time of year, but it’s worth it to be reminded over and over again to simply be present, and take care of today. Let tomorrow worry about itself.