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During this Christmas season when all of my shopping and decorating was done, I sat down to watch a movie. Miracle on 34th Street is one I had never seen, so I put it on, sat down, and relaxed. As I watched the miracles that were experienced in the wonderful movie, I thought about the miracles I have experienced in my life. Besides the obvious of my life not being over after suffering a severe traumatic brain injury, there have been many more. Some not quite as obvious.

Every year after Shawn and Sage died, the holidays haven't carried the same kind of warmth and excitement they carried before. My eyes have been opened to loneliness even when the room is filled with family. Because of that, my prayers will always remember those who do not have their mom, dad, brother, sister, husband, wife, or child to spend the joyous holiday time with. I have so much empathy and compassion for those that are hurting so much at this time of year. After Shawn and I were married, during a conversation, he said, "If I ever die, Natalie, I don't want you to spend the rest of your life lone. I would want you to get married again." Those words stung at the thought of Shawn not growing old with me. But as we don't have control of the choices of others, I have had to live the rest of my life without Shawn by my side. Even though I knew Shawn didn't want me to spend the rest of my life alone, I had no desire to ever marry again. After eight years of getting to know and falling in love with Ryan, I felt a miracle happen when I said "I do" to him after being pronounced husband and wife at the end of August. Ryan's support and love have given me courage and confidence to experience other miracles including forgiving and visiting the man I happily call my friend.

When I stop to look for the many miracles, whether big or small, that have occurred and continue to occur in my life, I am full of gratitude and love to my Father in Heaven. His hand in our lives is obvious when we clean the window and are able to see clearly His direction, guidance, and reminders of His love He always gives.

I am grateful my Savior was born and is a light in my life. He is my comfort and constant example. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and have a great New Year as we look forward to 2016!!

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