I was recently asked about my kids and told how I must be so "thankful" to have such beautiful children..............My mind went reeling with all the times I yell and tell them to "pick up your clothes", "Clean up after yourself", "Get up, what are you going to sleep all day?", "Why aren't you working?", "Get a job", etc and they STILL don't listen; I thought about the time that my "genius" son traded his 2004 Hyundai Tiberon for a 1995 Honda Civic because it was a "Honda, baby"; I thought about how my son, who can't even rinse a dish out, brought home a 19 year old, when he was 17 and introduced me to her 3 year old son; I thought about my daughter and how she never quite lived up to the image of the "girlie girl" that I always wanted, in fact, she rebelled,  I thought about my pregnancy with Adam and how I was told to "abort" because I had toxoplasmosis; and Robert, what more can I say?; I remembered the prescription for valium that the doctor gave me(I love that doctor), when I brought my child in because he had a "friend" give him a tattoo of the Italian flag in my lanai and he got a skin infection from it and refused to take the antibiotic.............I thought about all the grief they've given me over the last few years and truthfully, I wasn't feeling it...............I just wasn't feeling "thankful" and then this person said surely I could think of SOMETHING that I was thankful for and then something came to mind.......... the birth of my son, Anthony, when I was 17 years old.   There is a song by Kenny Chesney that came out around the time that Anthony was graduating and once I heard it I balled my eyes out..........still can't listen to it, but I feel it defines our relationship perfectly.   Well, anyway...........when I realized that I was pregnant at 17 years old and that my boyfriend wasn't a prize, I was so overwhelmed with a feeling of doom.   I thought to myself "There Goes My Life", but there wasn't a doubt in my mind that this was my child and I was going to do what I needed to do to be responsible for the baby that I was carrying.   I was told during a sonogram that I was having a girl, the most ideal situation, I thought.   I knew nothing about boys, didn't care to either.   My brother was 4 at the time and while he was cute and all, he was my brother............I loved him, but I couldn't do his hair, or paint his nails, play dress up, etc.....I didn't know how to relate to him...........I had never even changed a boys diaper until my brother was born.   Well, June 7th came around and I went into labor (the scariest thing for a 17 year old).......... he was finally born (after 36 hours) and they said it was a boy, my exact words out of my mouth were "its a WHAT?!?!?!"   I was devastated and thought, "There Goes My Life"............but then I held my son and instantly I was in love with this 7lbs 8oz bundle of boy............we had some struggles and not so pleasant times, I lost friends, and didn't have the things that I wanted or to provide to my son, but I stuck it out, this was my boy.............I married his dad, had 2 more children with him and I can't say my life was ever what I had hoped it would be, I had tolerated years of physical, emotional and sexual abuse............ And then Anthony graduated HS and I watched him take his diploma and hold it over his head and as he walked away with the rest of his HS class, I said to myself "There Goes My Life".   It was then that I realized that I had alot to be thankful for..................

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