Pour Your Heart Out: Change

Over the holidays, I spent some time with two of my amazing sisters-in-law.

One with a brand new baby in her arms. A gorgeous baby girl with a head full of hair. A baby planned for, a pregnancy full of hopes. A beautiful nursery lovingly created in preparation for baby’s arrival. A baby shower, baby gear bought, classes taken, books read. So many plans. Even though us experienced moms know that no matter how much you prepare ahead of time, none of us was truly prepared for the changes a new baby brings to our lives.

The other sister-in-law, recently diagnosed with cancer. Something definitely not planned for.  But surgery will take place on Wednesday morning. As much preparation as possible has been made to help her get through this. We’re hoping for the best possible outcome, but still- she faces changes.

Looking at these two beautiful women- beautiful inside and out. Knowing that they both will go through so much change this coming year. Some good and some definitely not.

But the constant is change.

It gives me a new perspective.

I can plan all I want and it doesn’t mean that things will work out the way that I want them to.  Sometimes there can be a happy surprise and things can go much better than imagined. And other times, it’s possible to be blindsided by something terrible.

Life changes.

While I can make resolutions or predictions about how 2013 will go and what things will have changed by the time 2014 rolls around, the only thing I know for certain is that by the time another years rolls on, things will be different.

And while I can’t control everything or plan for all the possibilities, I can decide that I can make the most of this year.  That I can make plans and go after what I want, because we don’t know what the future holds. Seems silly to sit on my ass and just wait to see what happens instead of attacking life and trying to make this year the best yet, no matter what life throws at me.

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  1. Oh how I know all about never make plans. I can hope and dream for the best to happen, or for it all to fall in place, but I also know you have to have a backup plan just in case. Just because you have your plans does not mean someone else with their plans will mess yours up. Sending prayers for you SIL that she has a speedy recovery and total healing.
    Southern Angel recently posted..Scattered Sunday…My Profile

    • Exactly- we can plan but it really doesn’t mean anything will work out the way we thought.

      Thank you for the prayers! 

  2. Shell, I am so sorry for this…and I understand the feelings of being pulled in two directions. One happy….one scary. Hugs to you and your family, Shell.
    Sherri recently posted..All I want for Christmas is at Neiman MarcusMy Profile

  3. I think it’s great that you’re going to make things happen for you. Life is too short to wait for things to come to us. Good luck and I know you will rock 2013!

    (so sorry about your sister in law, may her surgery go well today)
    Alison recently posted..Farewell, 2012My Profile

  4. So sorry to hear about the cancer! How fun to have a new baby at Christmas. It’s true we never know what life is going to send our way. I try to be grateful for each and every day I have on this beautiful earth and never take for granted that life will always be the way I want it to be.
    momof12 recently posted..Happy New Year!My Profile

  5. Yup… no resolutions for me this year… oh I have things in the back of my mind that I’d like to tackle, but we got hit with two whammies last week and I need to help those close to me sort through that first… not a cancer diagnosis, but life altering nonetheless.

    Prayers for your SIL.
    Single Mom in the South recently posted..My Mother is AmazingMy Profile

    • So sorry to hear that you are dealing with whammies right now. 

      Thank you for your prayers. 

  6. I don’t usually make resolutions either, but this year I have resolved to work on things that will give the  strength to help others
    JDaniel4′s Mom recently posted..Resolutions and Goals for The New YearMy Profile

  7. I love this perspective and it’s probably one I should take up as well. Much better to go after what you want than sit on your ass, I think I needed to be reminded of this. Thank you.
    Julia recently posted..2012 Word Montage…My Profile

    • Sometimes it’s easy to just sit on my ass and let things happen, but it’s not what I really want! 

  8. Prayers for your one sister in law and congrats to the other.

  9. Change is definitely the only constant.
    Here’s hoping more joy comes than sorrow in 2013!

  10. Oh how difficult life’s turns can be… you said it perfectly. My sister is waiting to see if her breast cancer has now gone to her bones, and my father-in-law is at this very moment in open heart surgery… Embrace every day… our time here is precious!! Btw- I finally added my post to your Pour Your Heart Out!!! YAY for me!!! :)
    Chris Carter recently posted..New Year Resolution 2013My Profile

  11. Spending time with family always gives me lots of perspective too. Here’s to going after what we really want and believing in it so fully it has no choice but to materialize. At least that’s my motto for 2013 :) For now, I’m more than a little ready for my kiddos to go back to school tomorrow and find our routine again :) 
    sarah @sundayspill recently posted..the sunday spill–about nodding yes and being matched upMy Profile

  12. Love this Shell! So sorry about your sister-in-law, sending prayers and hugs your way.
    Tina @ Life Without Pink recently posted..2012: A Year In Review {In Photos}My Profile

    • Thanks, Tina. We have every reason to believe that surgery will be successful but cancer is never a word you want to hear. 

  13. So hard…prayers for both your sil’s but especially for a successful surgery and treatment!  I hope next year you will all be sitting in the same spot healthy, happy and grateful!

  14. God speed to your sister-in-law today and hugs to you. Thank you for articulating the sometimes futile planning we all do and for the reminder to grab this day and enjoy it. Happy January 2! 
    Mary @ A Teachable Mom recently posted..One at a TimeMy Profile

  15. It is so true. You really can’t plan too much because life just happens. Thinking about your sister-in-law and hoping all goes well with her surgery.
    Stacey recently posted..Things that hurt my OCDMy Profile

  16. Those last two sentences really resonate with me. Yes, change is a constant and we don’t know what the future holds but we can go for what we want instead of waiting for it to just happen. That’s really want I want to bring into the new year – to go after what I want and to be intentional in my actions and pursuits. I wish you all the best in this new year Shell. Sending thoughts and prayers to your sister-in-law and your family.
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..Jumpstarting the New YearMy Profile

    • Thanks Christine. I feel like I’ve sat around and waited long enough. And all of a sudden it’s 2013. 

  17. I’ve missed you! It sounds like you have had a family filled holiday. That’s wonderful! 

    This post is exactly how I feel. I’m not sure of anything, but I know God has something planned and I don’t want to miss it waiting. Well written sentiments! :)
    Adrienne recently posted..My Housekeeping Tips: How to Just Barley Get ByMy Profile

    • Yes- we were off visiting family for a lot of the holidays! It’s nice to be back, though! 

  18. Saying lots of prayers for your sister-in-law. This post is so inspiring, Shell. I had a whole list of things I want to accomplish this year and I’m chucking it. I’m going to put my trust in God and know that wherever I go or whatever I do, it is where I am supposed to be and what I am supposed to do. Hmmm…that feels like a post forming. Happy New Year, Shell! So glad I met you this year! You have helped me so much in so many ways!
    AnnMarie recently posted..End of Year Recap: 2012My Profile

  19. Prayers for your sister-in-laws! Last year I learned that despite our best laid plans, sometimes life just happens, but simultaneously, I learned how important it is to keep striving, keep living and keep dreaming! Great post! Happy New Year!! :)
    AJ Collins recently posted..The Year in Review… or something like thatMy Profile

  20. You’ve been blessed with amazing sister-in-laws. Joyful news and sad news all at the same time. I lost my mom back in June 2012 and you’re so right about how things come to be. We can plan all we want, but that doesn’t mean everything will go accordingly. All we know is that every moment is precious. We must always make the best of it. Thank you.
    Sela Toki recently posted..This Brand Spanking New YearMy Profile

    • I’m so sorry for your loss.

      I really do have great sisters-in-law. Well, two of them. The third… we’ll just ignore for now. ;) 

  21. I understand completely. With both of my children, I expected one type of child and got another. :)
    Teresa (Embracing the Spectrum) recently posted..Conversations with Squeaker Throughout 2012My Profile

  22. I don’t make many plans because life has thrown a bunch of curve balls at me over the years. Even when I do make plans, I wonder if they’ll actually come to pass. So I live day to day, hoping for the best!
    just JENNIFER recently posted..Guest Posts NeededMy Profile

  23. I still try to make plans so that I can try to get things accomplished, but know that things won’t always go the way I hope.

  24. Its so true that when we are in a whirlwind of challenges and tragedy that our perspective shifts.  This happened for me in 2011 when my college roommate died of breast cancer, as well as in 2012 when our family has gone through something very personal and challenging.  I totally get it and am right there with you.  Commit that on the days when things go downhill you will turn to this post and remind you of this “change”.  Blessings to you and prayers to your SIL.  I get it.
    Leah aka FFPMaMMa recently posted..chills or tears?My Profile

    • i’m sorry you’ve had so many of these experiences. 

      But they really do change our perspectives. 

  25. I think many, many of us are embracing a Carpe Diem philosophy. Like so many, the Sandy Hook tragedy really altered my outlook on life. It was a tragic wake-up call for me. I’ve been sleepwalking through life a bit over the past few months. No more!
    JD @ Honest Mom recently posted..It’s time for Finding the Funny: Link up with your funny posts!My Profile

  26. It’s so true, as the old adage goes, change is the only constant. I certainly could have never predicted what the last couple of years would have brought me…
    Alexa recently posted..Mission of the MonthMy Profile

  27. I picked ACT as my focus word for 2013, because I want to attack life and make it good no matter what happens this year. I’ll be praying for your sister-in-law. 
    Tracie recently posted..One Word: ActMy Profile

    • Love that word! 

      Thank you for your prayers. Her surgery went great but she will have to have chemo as well. 

  28. I haven’t decided if I am going to do resolutions or not this year, which I guess says a lot about my resolve. I can definitely get behind going for what I want even if it means spending the day comfy and cozy on my couch all day and not feeling guilty! I am also trying to weed out activities and people that get in the way of me going for what I want. There is a whole lot of soul searching involved in that. Your niece is adorable and such a gift for your family at this time. Sending every good vibe I can think of for your SIL. It chills me to the bone when women our age are sick with serious illness. So very frightening.

    • Nothing wrong with having a cozy day on the couch sometimes! I’ve learned there are things and people I have to say no to in order for me to get other things done. 

      My sil is early thirties- you just never expect it. She’s doing well, though. 

  29. Prayers for your family …both gratitude filled ones for your new niece and healing ones for your other sister-in-law. xoxo

    And you go and attack 2013, and you make it wonderful!
    angela recently posted..Resolutions, Goals and Everything In BetweenMy Profile

  30. A great post, Shell.  I”m sorry about your sister-in-law.  And so  happy about your niece. 
    Leigh Powell Hines @Hinessightblog recently posted..Soup’s On: In-The-Money Greens SoupMy Profile

  31. Yes the only constant thing is change.  But as you said- it isn’t anything to fear but just need to enjoy and go with it.  I hope 2013 is a great year for you. 
    Emmy recently posted..Proud Mommy Moments: The HikeMy Profile

  32. Change is constant, I try to go with it instead of fight it because time is going to just keep going.  I will be thinking of your sister in law with cancer and I have loved seeing the pictures of the new baby on facebook!!
    Stephanie @ Babe’s Rockin’ Mami recently posted..Updated {101 in 1001}My Profile

  33. I’m trying to stay positive for the new year! Last year was a rough one all around… it went from bad to worse to horrifying… and then things slowly started to climb back toward middle ground. This year is starting out pretty neutral, just a shade to the good side. I’d love for this to be a wonderful year, but I’m not naive as to how bad it can get.

    All we can do is change the things that we can change, hope for the best on the rest, and make the best of whatever comes at us.

    Hoping for a wonderful year for all of us!
    Heather O. recently posted..Showing My Roots with Erin MargolinMy Profile

  34. Life really can change at the drop of a hat – much love to your family xxx
    Always thought I was a bit of a planner, until recently … and now it is all I can do to take it one day at a time.
    Not quite the way I had hoped to gain perspective but it sure has made me look at life a little differently.
    Sisters from Another Mister recently posted..Cry me a riverMy Profile


  1. [...] up with the fabulous Shell at Things I Can’t Say – check out her great linkup on Wednesdays! Share [...]

  2. […] I rolled my eyes at New Year’s Resolutions last year. Knowing that the only thing I could accurately predict is that things would be different come the new year and that I needed to roll with the changes. […]