We throw around the terms "best day ever" and "worst day ever" so lightly now, that they've sort of lost their meaning. Think about it - can you name your absolute best or worst day ever? Maybe, for some people, there is one definitive day that was filled with so much joy or so much tragedy that the day remains forever engraved in their mind and heart.
For me, it's a tough call. There have been so many best and worst days. The difference is, although all days eventually end, the best days can contain only so much joy until they are just a memory and the worst days must be left behind in order to move on.
And while there have been some really good days, few have qualified as "bests." But the ones that do....well, those I'll never forget.
I remember getting married. The first time. I wanted so badly to be married, to be a wife, to have a husband, to do the whole big, white wedding. And it was beautiful and wonderful and I felt special. It was a best day. Even though I eventually got divorced, that day made me something I always wanted to be, and I won't forget it.
But then came a worst day - when we realized divorce was inevitable and I knew I would have to tell my kids. I dreaded that day for several weeks until the agreed-upon day. I sobbed the night before, not knowing how I could manage to tell three little souls that their lives were about to be irrevocably changed. And then, when the day arrived, it was not a fraction of the horror I thought it would be. Little pragmatic kids, they took it in stride. I won't forget that day.
Another best day was the birth of my first child. I wanted to be a mom more than anything and the fact that it was about to become a reality saw me through hours of labor. I just knew I was carrying a son, and was absolutely over the moon to find out my baby was a daughter! A girl - I always wanted a daughter and so I felt my life was complete. It was a good day.
And then I found out I was having her sister. Siblings - a real family! I just knew she was a girl and was not surprised at all when she was born. Sweet from the start, with "old eyes," I knew she was a special gift. We had a unique bond from the beginning. Now I had two little girls, sisters forever. I envisioned the matching dresses, the sharing of secrets, the inevitable fights. Definitely a best day.
A few years later, I had a son. A boy! I wanted a son so badly. I already had two little girls and I knew this was likely to be my last baby, so I wanted, NEEDED a son. The pregnancy was completely different so I just knew he was a boy - and the ultrasound confirmed it. It was weird, knowing the sex of the baby, giving him a name before he was born. But it only made the anticipation that much better so that when he arrived in all his celebratory glory, it was such a best day.
Then, my second husband. Another chance at love, someone who "had my back" and held me up during the worst times with unwavering support. How could I be so lucky to have this chance at the kind of marriage I missed out on? Our special wedding, the blending of two families, was a best, best day.
And then....another daughter. Not a baby this time, but a daughter with my husband's eyes and a sweet soul and a loving nature. What a gift that I got to be her stepmom! The day we all became an "official" family, and my dad welcomed her with a special toast at our wedding. A best day.
From there, so many best days have been my gift. Interspersed with worst days - horrible days of pain and tears and uncertainty and longing and loneliness and sadness and defeat, these best days are what keep me going. So many fun times, great experiences, awards, recognition, joy, accomplishments, once-in-a-lifetime happenings - these are the best days.
And while I cannot pinpoint one single day in my life that is the best or worst day ever, I realize that very fact, in itself, is a blessing and testament to how lucky I am. To have joy intersect with sadness. Pain crossed with pleasure. Happy balanced by sad. Best and worst.
I'll take it.