Monday, May 23, 2016

Floor Banana

Maggi says "Get the book. Thank me later."

If you're scratching your head, wondering whether I've been popping the Colorado candies I brought back from my last visit to 6th street, you've never read Hyperbole and a Half. Tsk tsk. Hurry, go grab the paperback!
Allie Brosh is my hero, she makes me feel like there's something redeemable in the things I despise most about myself. You see, I'm an unmitigated social calamity. The mere thought of interacting with strangers gives me hives. The one thing slightly more terrifying than those inevitable awkward conversational pauses, are customer service desks. Yes, I'm serious. I had a nightmare once that I was at Target trying to return some paperclips, and I couldn't find my receipt. There was a long line of anxious patrons all trying to return their paperclips, but they all had their receipts. The lady behind the counter morphed into a demon, and started screaming "NO RECEIPT, NO RETURN!!!" The people in line all started chanting with her, throwing their receipts at me until I was drowning in a sea of paper. It was terrifying. Anyway, I own my phobia. I'm a certifiable chicken-shit who prefers to buy and return online.
Now you know more about me than you probably wanted to know, but hopefully there's one of you out there thinking "You too?! I thought I was the only one." I feel your pain, and if you're like me, you have a very playful, extroverted husband who loves to taunt you.  See Exhibit A:
Exhibit A: Trying to act innocent
Now this might seem like a very innocent text, but let me give you a little background. We live in Iowa, where we adhere to a barbaric practice of taking all of our glass and aluminum to the grocery store to be recycled. So, the demons...I mean kind and sweet customer service clerks...know exactly how many of handles of Jack Daniels we went through last weekend. They know I like grapefruit La Croix, and orange Gatorade. It's creepy, and they can get really pissy about how you sort your I've heard.
I've been married to my darling husband for eighteen years. We dated four years before that. He knows me better than anyone, so you can see how his text is a deliberate taunt. 
See Exhibit B:
I'll just go ahead and add in that Hyperbole and a Half comic face to pontificate just how serious the situation was: 
Credit Allie Brosh
Now, at this point, I was really hoping my darling husband would reply with something along the lines of "Just kidding, my beautiful and brilliant wife. I'll take care of it." Yeah, nope.
Floor Banana Motherfucker
At this point, I don't know whether to laugh or cry...or hide. I even dropped a huge Hyperbole and a Half hint!! See Exhibit C, re: f****** floor banana:

From Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things that Happened. By Allie Brosh

Once I realized that my diabolical husband wasn't going to let the damned recycling go, I actually did hide. I got in my car and started to drive to my happy hiding place - the library. I waved at my neighbor, as I turned out of our cul de sac, and was met with the most horrifying noise. It sounded like a hundred plates shattering at the same time. I screamed, and tried not to steer my car into my neighbor's living room. Once the car was stopped, I jumped out to assess the damage, except there was no damage. My very helpful neighbor, whom I was surprised was still speaking to the crazy hermit writer lady, said "I think it came from your trunk." DEVIOUS, DIABOLICAL, DEMOM SPOUSE!!! I popped the trunk, and found it filled with wine bottles, liquor bottles, pop cans, beer bottles...we're really not a bunch of drunks, I swear. 
I'm starting to develop an eye twitch at this point. My neighbor thinks I'm insane, my husband wants me to martyr myself to a demonic customer service clerk in the name of three freaking dollars, and I can't even get away without taking the problem with me. I was really tempted to dig through the liquor bottles to see if there was some swill left in the bottom of one of the handles. Instead, I went back home to see if I'd refilled my prescription for Xanax. The texts just kept coming.  See Exhibit D:
My husband, the comedian
It's a good thing I love this guy so much. About thirty minutes, and a whole lot of wine later, he came home from work and found me under a blanket fort in the basement. He said "You know I was always going to take the recycling myself, right?" All I could do was take another swig from my bottle of merlot, and mumble "Floor banana motherfucker." 

Monday, November 2, 2015


It's that time of year again - National Novel Writing Month. A whole thirty days to write eighty thousand-ish words worth publishing. Now, I'm going to sit here and pretend like the last eleven months haven't possessed a certain NaNoWriMo-esque quality...or maybe that was time spent possessed...semantics, really. Anyhow, I digress. Focus, Mags.

Novel-ember 2015 - a month for good things to come together. November and I have history, you see. It was three years ago this month that I published THE FINAL PIECE. I'm excited and I'm scared, because it's been seventeen months since my last book was published, and I'm not quite done with my third. Cue the NaNoWriMo anthem!! We have one, don't we? Here's my NaNoWriMo anthem. I don't know many writers who aren't pumped by the anticipation of our event. It's ours, we own it, we are authors, here like bees on crack, down to the wire on 11/30 at 11:59 p.m. It sounds like fun, right? There's no other high like it. The anticipation of this annual rite has given me the extra push...shove...kick in the keister to finish the book I've been working on for way too long, but when you get into a habit of clinging, it's so damn hard to let go. I've been selfish with my writing this year, in particular, my reluctance to share my WIP with anyone. Sure, I've given some trusted critique partners a chapter here and there, but that's all. My poor husband stopped asking me about the story after my voice started taking on a Gollum like quality and I began muttering about "my precious." This book has been mine...ALL MINE!! My saving grace, my safe haven. Mine. Mine. Mine.

My office door. Artwork courtesy of Monkey #1

All teasing aside, these new characters have given sanctuary to my art during a time I've spent wondering if I would/ could/ should write another book. Doubt is sneaky little fucker...pardon my language...on second thought, don't pardon me at all. It absolutely is a sneaky little fucker. It creeps in under the guise of something as benign as "Didn't I buy toothpaste last week?" Yes, Maggi, you did. However, you did not anticipate Monkey #2 using the entire tube to make little piles of toothpaste turds along the window sills to ward off spiders. Did you know that peppermint is a spider deterrent? Peppermint essential oil, to be exact. Gotta give the kid props for effort.

Back to that initial question "Didn't I???" It could've been anything, doubt will take root wherever we allow it. For me, it might have been the toothpaste, or a litany of other things I question myself about daily. Whatever the reason, doubt found it's way in and beat my confidence to a bloody pulp. Anyone who's ever waged war with doubt knows what a pathological liar it is. It says you aren't capable - you are! It tells you people don't care - they do! It insists you're a talentless hack - you aren't! You're freaking amazing! Don't let doubt tell you otherwise. As you can see, I'm fairly efficient when it comes to cheering for other people. It's a lot harder to be that encouraging with yourself.

I'd love to tell you that I picked myself up and brushed myself off, but I didn't. I marinated in my misery and ate my weight in chocolate covered pretzels. "My life is hard!" I'd justify, and no one would argue that. Then one day, a voice started buzzing in my head. "Chin up, Chicken, life is tough for everyone." Pretty soon other voices followed, so I had my psychiatrist up my medication. Kidding. I started profiling the voices and, just like that, I was writing again. I stopped marinating and started ruminating about book series centered around a group of young professionals living in NYC, trying to make a name for themselves in print journalism. Keeping it fairly quiet allowed me to find my writing juju again without the pressure of "So when's your next book coming out?" Now that I'm close, I can give you an answer! NaNoWriMo's all the motivation I need to reach "The End." Stay tuned...I can't wait for you to meet Rowan, Ben and Jonah (The City Press Series). I have a date with my editor at the end of this month, so the only thing standing between you and The City Press is whether I publish traditionally or indie. I'll keep you posted as these decisions are made.

If you're participating in NaNoWriMo, look me up -MagnoliaMy

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Good Enough

"Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change" - Brené Brown
I adore Brené Brown. If you aren't familiar with who she is, you should take a look at this  TED talk she gave back in 2010. I learned about her from one of my professors when I was studying to be a LCSW back in 2011. Did you know that about me? That's right, I'm a college drop out. Not once, but twice. I don't particularly like that about myself. It dredges up old memories of feeling like I'm not smart enough. For the record, I dropped out of college in 2012 with a 4.0 GPA. Still, the girl who overcame a learning disability and went back to college with 2 special needs monkeys at home felt like a failure. Ridiculous. At the time, my husband was taking a job in Germany, and I'd used the break between semesters to write this book called The Final Piece. It was a transitional time to say the least. I thought I'd take the fall semester off, publish my book, and then register for classes in the spring of 2013. I never expected the reception The Final Piece received. I certainly never imagined myself signing a book deal as a result. I didn't go back to school, but I'd been given an opportunity to reach people in a way I never could as a LCSW. Pretty cool, right?  It was amazing, and still I couldn't shake the feeling that I wasn't good enough. At that point, I had to sit myself down and say "Mags, what gives? What more do you possibly have to prove and to whom?" Therein lies the real  question "Why does it matter?" I've always known the answer - Because they told me I wasn't good enough. Now, don't boo-hoo for me, this is no sob story, we've all been rejected in some form or fashion in our lives. My particular brand of rejection came when I was fired from my position at the church I attended and subsequently ostracized by the community I'd been apart of for three years. Ouchie.

Once upon a crowded Panera in Greensboro, North Carolina I was sat down and told that I wasn't good enough by an elder from my church and his secretary. They told me I was damaged, and needed therapy (to which I still say "who isn't?" and "who doesn't?"). The specifics of that day are subject to perception, and no one knows exactly what transpired except Andy, Kathy, and myself. I will say that they acted unilaterally behind the backs of the other elders and our church. It was a heartless and humiliating thing to do to someone, and if it had ended there, the shame I felt would've lasted me ten lifetimes. Instead, the elder tried to convince my husband his actions were my fault, that I was so hopelessly broken and in need of therapy that he had no choice but to toss church policy in the toilet and act on his own. Makes sense, right? Caution: narcissism causes delusions. In case you're wondering, my husband's response was something along the lines of "You're so high on power you wouldn't know your own ass from a hole in the ground." I'm fairly certain "egomaniacal asshole" was tossed in there somewhere, too. Also, my therapist assures me that there's nothing irrevocably damaged or broken about me. Joking.

The truly fascinating thing about this quote is the sum of all these things is exactly what those people tried to take from me by shaming me, telling me I wasn't lovable, that I didn't belong, and then taking away my purpose at our church. Coincidence? I think not. The last thing Andy ever said to me was "I hope this doesn't affect your relationship with Jesus." Wow...he really thought a lot of himself. Luckily, my faith is not rooted in humanity. I adhere to my grandmother's wise words - going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than going to McDonald's makes you a cheeseburger. A community I believed I belonged to humiliated me and shunned me. That has nothing to with God, and everything to do with deeply flawed people.

So, like water off a duck's ass, I did my best to let their hypocrisy roll right off. There was no way I was going to let them get the best of me. I went back to school to get my LCSW to worthiness? My intelligence? My mental competency? Who knows, I just know I was seeking to fill all of the holes in my self confidence. I worked really hard in school and at keeping people at arm's length. The only way I know how to be is open, I'm not built for mystery. I'm a wears-her-heart-on-her-sleeve kind of girl, and trying to be less than that really took a toll on me. The only place I felt safe being vulnerable enough to be myself was in my writing, and that's how The Final Piece began. So vulnerability really is the place we innovate, create and change. I know I did. 

I didn't look back, I went on with my life and didn't give my old church a single thought until just recently. You can't outrun a past you're unwilling to deal with. I know that better than anyone, and yet I couldn't bring myself to face how I still felt - ashamed. The morning of the Author/ Reader brunch at Penned Con, I got a PM on Twitter from someone in my old congregation "What ever happened to you? You just disappeared." I was overcome with fury. I didn't go anywhere, I was asked to leave so I did. How dare they impose themselves back into my life. I almost didn't go to the brunch, because who would want to sit with the crazy girl who got kicked out of her church? I was no longer Maggi Myers: Fiction Writer. Monkey Wrangler. It didn't matter that I'm a published author or that I'd touched many lives with my heroines Beth and Caroline, or that I'm a fearless mama bear, devoted wife, sister, daughter... None of it mattered, because all I could think was how ashamed I was of the way those people treated me. Let me tell you, it pissed me off! Anger can be a powerful motivator, and it's the only thing that got me to that brunch and gave me the courage to walk up to a table full of strangers and say "hi." They didn't know that my hands were shaking, or that I was terrified of not having anything to talk to them about. Casual conversation for me is about Cameron's seizure counts, IEPs, 504s, and med changes. I was petrified. So petrified that when the gentleman next to me asked "So, what did you think of Ang Lee's Hulk?" I froze. Then I thought "Did he just ask me what I thought of *Onfi's results?" It took me a few seconds to realize I was wearing my Incredible Hulk t-shirt and this poor guy was waiting for me to weigh in on the age old dilemma - Ang Lee's or Louis Leterrier's Hulk? 
"Shame works like the zoom lens on a camera. When we are feeling shame, the camera is zoomed in tight and all we see is our flawed selves, alone and struggling." - Brené Brown
My zoom lens was focused on a Panera booth 700 miles away. It wasn't focused on the kindness of the man next to me, or the other women at my table. When I finally realized the flaw in my own thinking, I was able to introduce myself to Terry Maggert, MS Stratton, Evelyn Stone, and MC Cerny. They reminded me that most people aren't like the people I left behind. I belong to different tribe now, a writing community filled with people just like me - broken in some places, damaged in others, but perfect as is. No therapy needed.
"You either walk inside your story and own it, or you stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness." ~Brené Brown
So here's another piece of my story. I hope it connects with those who've felt small because of someone else's carelessness. You aren't alone and you are enough.

I took this photo of myself in the Panera booth. I went back, sat there and wrote the last chapter of The Final Piece. Take that and smoke it in your pipe.

*Onfi is an anti-seizure medication for sufferers of Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome

Monday, May 11, 2015


Make a Wish trip to Disney World

It's almost been a year since Lily Love was released. It's also nearly been a year since my son became ill. Is your life lacking a little dramatic irony? I've got a ton you can borrow. When I finished Lily Love I was certain my life was on a specific path - professionally, personally, I had it all under control.

Epiphany #1 - I'm a dunce who'd learned nothing from writing about a woman who had to accept a new reality in the face of her old reality crashing down around her.

Way to fail, Mags. I thought we were done with diagnoses nine years ago, when my youngest was diagnosed with Autism and Childhood Absence Epilepsy. We'd been through years of ABA, OT, PT, name it, we did it. For a while, my entire life revolved around scheduling two toddlers for therapies between nap times and meal times. Since the monkeys were a little older, I thought we'd found a way to balance everything. The days of endless appointments were done, because we understood what we were facing. We had no idea.

Epiphany #2 - Life is not fair, and it's far from certain.

I'm embarrassed to say I honestly thought that because life had already kicked us in the balls it wouldn't again. To be fair, I was going under the assumption that a double punch of autism, topped with an epilepsy TKO was enough for our family to deal with. What I failed to realize was that it's not up to me to determine what constitutes "enough." If I jumped down that rabbit hole then essentially I'd be saying what our family doesn't deserve, your family does. No one deserves this, but really crappy things can happen to anyone, and they threes...fours...fives... It's not a competition and tragedy doesn't keep score.

Epiphany #3 - Grief makes you an asshole.

Don't throw stones at me, this is my opinion based on my own experience. Everyone within a 100 mile radius of me in the last year has been a) let down b) chewed out c) neglected d) flipped off by me. Grief is an all consuming, life sucking, logic stealing bastard that turned me into a very selfish person. I hate that I wasn't a better friend, mom, wife, daughter, aunt, cousin and sister. I hid out in my house a lot. Some days I'd drop the monkeys off at school, turn around and go right back to bed. I was short tempered and hypersensitive. Hell hath no fury like the wrath of a half Spaniard-Irish woman...on a good day. I'm also a cusser. Add that to the short fuse and...well, let's just say my husband is a saint who must really, really love me a whole lot. The bird flipping came from the Screw You and Your Perfect Life phase of grief. I hated everyone who had healthy children. My resentment ran deep and the more putrid it became, the more I loathed myself. Did I mention how grief turned me into an asshole?

Epiphany #4 - Mourning and loss make people uncomfortable.

And down right irritable, if you want to know the truth. I kept up with the reviews of Lily Love during the hospital stays, because apparently I'm a masochist. The resounding criticism that struck a chord with me was how angry some readers were at Caroline's grief. I tried not to take it personally when they called her a whiner,  or said that she was weak and cried way too much. Honestly, I wasn't surprised by the negativity - she was absolutely all of those things. I was all of those things, too, and it got me thinking about how people relate to someone who's mourning. When something tragic happens in life you never get over it, you learn to live with it and I've noticed some people get a little pissy when they feel you're taking too long getting there. I'll share a secret with you - It's not a destination. You never get there, you just get better at hiding your pain. Some people's frustrations are born from an incessant need to fix you. They have the best of intentions but all the over quoted bullshit in the world will not change another person's loss.

- Everything happens for a reason
- This is God's plan
- I don't think I could do it
- But he'll be okay, right?
- But he'll get better, right?

- Sometimes shit happens for no reason.
- I don't believe it's God's plan to make children suffer. Seriously, sometimes craptastic things happen for no Godly reason. I do believe it's His divine grace that kept me from karate chopping people in the throat when they said dumb things like "This is God's plan..."
- Yes, you could do it and you would do it because you love your babies as much as I love mine.
- No.
- No...and no, I will not lie and say "yes" to make someone else feel better.
"You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!" Sorry, just channeling a little Jack Nicholson...I have the sudden urge to watch A Few Good Men.

It takes a tremendous amount of whining and crying to get to acceptance. True story. No one can rush you through it, you have to meander at your own pace and get there on your own time. Acceptance doesn't mean your not sad anymore, it just means you've gotten to a place where you can balance it a little better.

Epiphany #5 - Hope is not naive.

This one took me the longest. At the onset, I thought hope began and ended with a cure. Over time I learned that my hope was fueled by perspective. There is still time to cherish, life to celebrate and love to smother with. Our life in the present inspires my hope for the future so you can be sure I'm going to suck the marrow out of it.

P.S. My next book is going to be about young journalists - something I've got zero experience with. I think I've done all the self reflecting through fiction I can for a lifetime.

xoxo- Maggi

*click  here to learn more about myoclonic epilepsy*

Saturday, April 11, 2015

So, Maggi, What are You Writing?

Those words, so rich with possibility, are the scariest words I've ever heard. Life hasn't exactly been conducive to creativity in awhile. Seriously, just read a few posts previous to this one. The good news is Cameron's condition has stabilized enough for me to go back to writing full time. <insert nervous breakdown>

At first, I drove myself crazy trying to pick up where I left off with Ruby & Finn. Type. Delete. Type. Delete. Type. Delete. Delete. Delete... It didn't take long to realize that I needed to shelve them until I could do there story justice. When you make your living writing emotionally charged stories, it's unnerving to find your stamina for that sort of thing is being used up elsewhere. To put it simply, I needed a break from my own writing. I felt creatively empty, and it scared me senseless. I cried. I yelled. I ate copious amounts of chocolate. Nothing made me feel better, until I started to daydream about a girl named Rowan. Her story is completely different from anything I've written so far. So different, I considered writing her book under a pen name. Once I nixed that idea and forged ahead, I realized how much I needed this book. Rowan gives me strength. She is fearless, and writing her makes me feel that way too. She lives her life without apologies or excuses. She is who she is and is confident in that. I could really take some cues from her. Ultimately, she's a smart ass and I can totally relate to that. Perhaps her personality is a reflection of what I hope to get back to. I desperately want to live my life fearless of what may happen with Cameron. I also think I'd have a whole lot more energy if I was less concerned about pleasing everyone else. As far as confidence goes, I think I'm on the right track to getting some of that back. I never stopped being a smart ass, so there's that.

I'm not sure whether I will self-publish or go the traditional route. Right now, I need to finish and name the book. Keep a look out for a teaser next week!

xoxo- Maggi

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Happy Birthday, My Love

I met my husband in the fall of 1994, when we were both students at Florida Atlantic University. I saw him before he saw me, and I remember turning to my friend asking "Who is that?" Let me just say --I was not a boy crazy girl. I was friends with a lot of guys, and had a boyfriend or two, but I did not swoon for any boy, but I did when I saw him and it scared me to death. I was sharp and brittle on the inside, but had mastered the appearance of someone soft and genial on the outside. When Steve smiled at me from across the quad, it felt like every inch of my facade was exposed. I wish I could say that I marched right up to him to introduce myself, but I didn't. However, my friend did and while she chatted him up, I slunk away like the coward I was. Later that evening she told me his name was Steve Myers and he'd just transferred from Palm Beach Community College. He was a junior, majoring in engineering. She told me what an idiot I was being, and how I should just talk to him. In my heart, I knew that talking to this boy would be the end of my hiding, and I doubted he'd want much to do with the broken girl he'd find.
The next day, I was rollerblading through the halls of Algonquin Hall, and literally ran right into him. God has a sick sense of humor. Unable to stop my momentum, I knocked him flat on his back and landed sprawled across the top of him. I admit, I laid there longer than I probably should have. From across the quad, he'd made my heart stutter. Up close, he made it stop all together. He was beautiful, with strawberry blonde hair and green eyes, and I wanted him to be mine. So much for hiding. I stood up and said "Hi, I'm Maggi," and he smiled when he said "I know." I swooned, dammit, and I'm pretty sure I blushed, too. That day is one of my favorite memories.
Steve became everything I knew he would-- the best friend I've ever had and the absolute love of my life. There isn't a single thing he doesn't know about me. While I once would have found that terrifying, it now brings me immeasurable peace. No matter what happens in life, or how far off course I stray, I have someone who knows me - heart and soul. Twenty years later, I'm so grateful for his gentle persistence. It's still a source of profound wonderment, that he thought I was worth the grief I put him through. I don't deserve it, but I'm so very grateful for his love.
Steve, you are the very best thing that ever happened to me. Everything, and everyone else pales in comparison.

You. Are. My. Heart.

Happy Birthday, My Love.

Christmas 1994

Friday, October 10, 2014

Super Cam

If ever there were a nickname befitting my son, it is most certainly Super Cam. His first act of heroism was saving my life in utero. His tiny kidneys filtered blood for both us, when my own were failing. He rushed into the world ahead of doctors and nurses, who were woefully unprepared for his arrival. We haven't been able to slow him down since. He's a force of nature, a charming flirt, a boisterous clown, and the most compassionate child I've ever met. I know I'm biased, but consider the people whose lives he's changed:

-There was a woman he met in the grocery store who was going through chemotherapy, and had lost her hair. When he asked her why she was bald (to the chagrin and mortification of his mother), she said she was sick and the the medicine she took made her hair fall out. Cameron didn't hesitate to wrap his little arms around her and tell her "I have seizures," followed closely by "take your hat off, the sun helps things grow."

-There was a little girl in his class who wouldn't engage with other children. He didn't care, he talked to her anyway. He figured out the things she liked and slowly got her to smile at him. It seems so simple, but it was a first for this little girl and the most natural thing in the world to Cameron.

I believe that he has the purest heart of anyone I'll ever know in my lifetime. I've watched in awe, his ability to draw someone in with his charm, and change the way they see the world before they ever know what's hit them. That's not to say that he doesn't get frustrated, have tantrums, and drive me to the brink of my sanity every single day. He can't help it, just like he can't help but make everyone he touches a little better than they were before him.

Cameron has his own set of challenges. He's autistic and suffers from epilepsy. As his mom, and most avid advocate, I've worked hard at establishing an environment in which he and his big brother can thrive. I've got to say, we've done remarkably well. Cameron is a very happy little boy, and so is his brother. At the end of the day, that's all that matters to me and my husband. We've had to remind ourselves to focus on that this week. Like everything in life, nothing stays the same for long. Change is a guarantee. Pain is inevitable. Suffering is a choice.

On Monday Cameron was diagnosed with Myoclonic Epilepsy, a far cry from the Childhood Absence Epilepsy he'd been diagnosed with at two years old. We weren't prepared to hear what a diagnosis like that meant. We always knew that Cameron would face limitations that other children his age would never face, due to autism. We never expected that epilepsy would dwarf what autism did to our family. Children with epilepsy typically outgrow it. Not Cameron. His seizures morphed into the kind of seizures that are hardest to treat. The kind that are drug resistant, and uncontrollable. The ones that often lead to SUDEP (Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy). We can change his medication, but we'll never be able to stop the seizures entirely. Eventually the drugs will stop working, and I can't even let myself think about what will happen then. I'm not supposed to outlive my son.

1 in 58 boys have autism.
1 in 30 autistic children develop epilepsy.
1 in 100 epileptics who suffer from drug resistant seizure disorders die from SUDEP.
1 in 1,000,000 - Super Cam.

Here is my pitiful cliché: Life is too short to waste on anything less than joy. My goal for Cameron is the same: Happiness. The goal I have for myself: Gratitude. I'm trying to find a way not think about how long we have left with him. No one can predict that. Even when someone's life expectancy is abbreviated, it's a crapshoot. In the middle of this nightmare, I'm reminding myself how blessed I am God chose me to be the mother of the most extraordinary little boy. I'm continuously in awe that he is mine. Our future is far from certain but I'm looking to the forward with a grateful heart, because I know that every single moment left is a gift.  xoxo- Maggi