I received the best surprise ever, and I want to share these photos with you, but I really want to tell you how they came about. Sheila told me to keep the 15th available, have my makeup done and for us to all look and feel great. She had a surprise, but she was going to give me an address on the 15th and 3:00 and we were to just go knowing nothing. When she said to look good, my first thought for a split second was “photos?” Then of course my next thought led to my favorite photographers Hayne Photographers. I quickly dismissed that split second thought because that would be the surprise in my wildest dreams, and I thought there was no way that would be the surprise. So then I decided to not even try to guess. I thought maybe we were going to look at Christmas lights together somewhere, or a nice dinner out. I had no clue, and I remained in that clueless state happily. I knew I would love whatever the surprise was because it was specially planned for us by Sheila. That’s all I knew. Then a couple days before the surprise I started to realize that a couple of people knew what our surprise was. No big deal. Sheila led me to believe that after I posted about the surprise on facebook, that my friends and family were curious and started asking her questions.
My facebook post: “I was told to have the family dressed nice to do something together on the 15th and that she will send me an address that day (so I don’t google it!! Lol). I’m freaking out a little bit Sheila!”
What I DIDN’T know, was that she had messaged all of our friends and family on our facebook accounts to ask them if they wanted to help make this surprise possible (financially) to the extent of getting her account disabled!
After the surprise, this is what I had to say about it on facebook…..
“OH MY, I’m speechless. Sheila knows my heart!!! Best. Surprise. Ever. She knew what would be the absolute best evening ever for me. It was a family session with photographers that I’ve admired for years in an AMAZING location. Sheila went with me to see their studio once and she knew how big of a deal they are in the photography world to me. Seriously, I saw them walk around the corner and was so excited. I was speechless for a minute! I can honestly say that this evening might be my favorite family memory of ALL time because it went so smoothly. And I’m not even exaggerating. I can’t even express how I feel right now and I’m trying so hard to put it into words. And that was just the experience!!! I haven’t even seen the pictures yet!!!! Lol”
At that point I didn’t realize the extent of the surprise. After that post, I spoke with Sheila and she told me the whole story about contacting Scott and Adina and messaging all of my friends to help. She told me she was transferring money to me that all of my friends and family had gotten together so that we could order all the prints, albums, wall art, etc that we wanted to order.
Of course, another post followed. “Thank you to everyone who helped make today possible. It was a fairytale day and honestly it was the best surprise that anyone could have come up with that would touch my heart so deeply. I know I already posted about my excitement once, and I know this might sound a little dramatic, but this evening was a dream come true kind of experience for me. It really was!!! I feel so loved that people made this happen. I’m so happy right now.”Sheila sent me a card with names of those that donated towards our print order, and the card said this: “Please know that you are not alone. You have many people caring about you and surrounding you with positive thoughts and prayers.” That card is now hanging on my wall and I added the names of people that donated after she sent it. There are people that were just as excited about this surprise as the ones that were able to donate, and I know that and I’m thankful for everyone who donated, prayed that it would be a smooth experience, and were happy for us to do it.
Enjoy the photos and Merry Christmas from our family to yours!! We are celebrating our second Christmas together since Mike was diagnosed. Last Christmas we really wondered if it would be our last Christmas together, so we are incredibly encouraged and hopeful that he will have many many more!! I know that for me personally, I cherish these times just a little bit more than I did before. Its been such a hard year emotionally for me and both emotionally and physically for Mike. But this Christmas season, we are thankful beyond words. The support that many have shown us has blown us away and oftentimes left us speechless.