The morning sky is dark with rain and gray clouds. Raba Baba is already preparing lunch at the Spoke and one of the grand kids is awake and watching cartoons. Diana has a sinus headache, and just called out from the bedroom for two Ibuprofen. So I take them to her and return to my desk in our den to write my blog.

I’ve already made coffee and let the dog out and checked my Facebook and Twitter. It seems fewer and fewer are reading these blogs and I wonder if they are worth the effort, other than my personal gain I get from writing them. And I do gain a lot, with each blog. See, I never was and still am not a ‘writer’. This is all new to me, but I enjoy this new found hobby… writing.

I don’t read as much as I should and never read fiction stuff. I can’t imagine making up a story, but I have very little trouble putting my thoughts to paper. They come from stuff I already know and remember and feel. Today I feel lots of stuff….. joy and sadness, health and hurt, pressure and no pressure, but most of all I feel loved.

Judie and Ron

Because I was loved as a child and now that I am an adult, my life requires a lot of love to be balanced. I must give it and receive it to be happy. Yesterday was a sad day for our family and for Judie’s family, so we all gathered and gave our love and comfort to Judie and Ron as they prepared to drive to Washington, DC and leave their home and usual Christmas routine to go be with Ron’s Dad and family, for the final time… while Ron’s Dad is still alive.

And we talked and hugged and discussed the situation. When dad got there, I told the group gathered that I had a feeling this was going to be a very special Christmas for their family and how fortunate they were to be together and traveling and seeing the National Christmas Tree and the state trees and our Nation’s Capital all lite up for the world to see. It reminded me how we used to travel every Christmas to Dad’s Mom’s and Dad’s Dad, very seldom having Christmas at home.

At this point in the Burnham families life, there are no grandkids, no married kids, and all the children are grown up. They were so supportive of their Dad that they would not let him go alone on this emergency trip. Ron is a big guy with a big heart and to see him crying, made me cry. I spent the entire day and on into the night with them and watched as family friends called, came by and even their minister; Helen Hamilton took time to sit with Judie and then Ron.

Drew, Cara, Judie, Ron, Barker - The Burnhams

Judie loves so many people, she is in return, loved by many people. Not having a vehicle that all the Burnhams could fit into, they were planning on taking two cars, even though they wished they could all be together in one vehicle. Dad’s wife Mickey, has a van and it is big enough for all of the Burnhams and Dad offered to see if Mickey might let them use her van for the long trip. Dad called and explained the situation to Mickey and she quickly said it would be her pleasure to let them borrow her van.

The whole family was relieved and excited to be able to travel all together, as a family, in one car. There was a collective “thank you” sighed out to Mickey and Dad for arranging a way for them all to be together.

Mickey, if you read this, I want to thank you for this act of family and kindness. Soon after the family found out they would be traveling together, their mood lightened and their hearts were warmed and they were drawn closer to Dad’s wife than ever before. And that’s a good thang. It has not been so. Things have been said, feelings hurt, and estrangement had ruled between Dad’s kids and Mickey.

Last Tuesday, we shared a Christmas dinner with LuAnne and Judie, and me, and Dad and Mickey and Jim, her son. We have not shared a meal together in a long time. That meal did not heal all wounds, but it started the healing and now this act of family will heal more past wounds.

So, on the 10th Day of Christmas I give you ….. Change.

Mickey and Jack on their wedding day

Things change, we change, times change, but love endures all change. My sisters and I faced the change of Dad having a wife that was not our Momma. We didn’t handle it as well as we wished we could and hope that someday this change would feel right to us and Dad.

I hope this is the start of the change we all need… a united family and a Dad not torn between his children and his wife.

Things change, and bad things only last a moment, because things change. And there is no better way to effect change than to love, and forgive, and be patient, and understand. We aren’t the only creatures on the planet… we are all connected. Change then affects us all… because we are all connected.

It’s like the domino effect; one change creates a long line of changes one after another. We all are products of change. We changed from a seed into caring societies, people and families – sons to Daddys, Dad to Granddaddys, and someday grandkids into parents and the chain of change goes on and on.

Change is inevitable and without it, there is no life. My life has changed many, many times and this time, this change may be my last chance to change for the better or… worse. Tomorrow is never guaranteed, only hoped for or dreaded. If we see a tomorrow, expect a change. Is there something you can change that you know you need to change… about yourself or relationships? I sense we all need some change, me especially.

I watch some folks change for the worse, especially when something goes bad in their life. I have watched family members change for the worse, some for the better and some never change cause they are already good as gold.

This Christmas things have changed. Diana still mourns the death of her brother, Ron is saddened with the impending death of his father, our family functions are rearranged, and I have lost too many good friends this year to count. Things change… but love endures and that will never change.

I love ya’ll and hope your changes are for the best and ya’ll hope for me as I continue to change. “I’m just an old chunk of coal, but I’m gonna be a diamond someday”…. And I feel the pressure that effects that change… over time.

It’s Christmas Time, a time that changed the world. One person, with one purpose changed the world… you can too… through Him and His love for you that gives you and me that power… the power to change. The power to change ourselves and then the domino affect starts… changing the world around you …. And me.

“Got any spare change?” somebody needs it if you will give it… this I sense.