I’ve never been big on April Fools’ Day. Most of the time, it comes and goes before I even think about it. Four years ago, though, April Fools’ Day took on a different meaning. It marked the beginning of one of the most challenging times my family’s ever faced.
I was out of town on business, and my mom suffered a stroke. From the time my dad called me at 4:55 a.m. until my mom came home nearly a month later, a part of me kept thinking I was stuck in a long, cruel joke.
Mom pulled through. So did the rest of us. Along the way, we experienced things that would forever change us. I learned my parents truly cannot live without one another. My relationship with my brother changed from a big-sister-little-brother dynamic to one where we were equals who had each other’s backs. The most surprising thing? I discovered I so much stronger that I had ever given myself credit for.
So instead of playing a joke this year (not that I would have ever played one anyway), I’m going to be thankful for our 2010 journey. It was hard at the time, but we are so much better for it.