Tag Archives: proud

It’s Okay

My mom told me a story once.  It was about me in grade school.  My teacher, Mr. G, told my mom what happened.  He said he was helping me zip up my coat and the zipper broke.  He said, “Oh, Susan, I’m so sorry” and he said he felt really bad like it might be his fault.  But he told my mom that I made him feel so much better.  I just looked at him and calmly said, “It’s okay. My mom won’t be mad.”

This story has always stuck with me. Now that I’m a Mom I realize she shared that story with me because she is proud of that moment.  I couldn’t have explained grace or kindness at that young of an age but I knew it because my mom taught me.  Just by the way she lived.

I want to be that kind of mom.

As you know, we moved to Texas a few months ago and it has been amazing.  I am  processing so many things, it’s tough to write about it.  I start and stop because there is so much to say and I want to say it all but I don’t think it’s time yet. Does that make sense?

Anyway, I’ve been trying all along to just roll with whatever is going on.  I don’t always succeed.  I’ve been saying, “It’s okay” to the kids a lot.  I’ve been showing up, meeting people, asking questions, laughing, staying open, trying to manage my expectations.  All along, saying to my kids, “it’s okay” and trying not to fly off the handle at the little things.

The other day I went grocery shopping and the refrigerator was loaded to the max.  I opened the door to get something out and strawberries and blueberries flew everywhere! I was not calm.  I yelled, “OH S**T – NO -UGH!”

You know what happened?

All three of my kids came running.  They saw me on the floor and they got down with me to pick up the fruit.  They said, “It’s okay Mom”, “It’s no big deal Mom”, “Don’t worry, we can wash the fruit Mom”.

I couldn’t have been prouder at that moment.  Or more grateful.

I will remind them of that story one day.

The way they offered me kindness and grace and understanding.

It was just a tiny moment, but to me…it was huge.

I don’t know where they will go to college or what their jobs will be or who they will marry or where they will live.

But I do know they will be okay.

They know it too.

And that gives my heart rest.

©2014 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved




Day 11: Thank you to our Veterans

grandpa marines 3


That’s my dad on the right.  He was a Marine in World War II.  This must have been a picture of him on a break, hanging out with his friends.  It’s good to see the smiles.  I wish I could ask him about the picture and more about the war.  He’s gone now but he never really talked about it.  I know it wasn’t easy.

I’ve always been proud of my dad for so many reasons and his being a Marine and a Veteran always made me feel extra proud.  To me, it meant he was brave and strong and disciplined and honorable.

I’m thankful to all the U.S. Veterans today and everyday.

Here’s what I want to say to them.

Thank you for fighting for my freedom. Thank  you for sacrificing and sweating and missing home and saying good-bye to your family and being brave.  Thank you for putting yourself in danger so I can live in comfort.  It’s incredible what you’ve done.  Thank you for knowing there is something bigger than you and me and us and it is worth defending.

Thank you to your families too – the wives and kids and parents and siblings who send you off not knowing if you will come back.  Thank you to them for sending you letters and love and prayers.  Thank you to them for welcoming you home with signs and letters and love and prayers and hugs.  Thank you to the military communities that support veterans when they come home and support their families when they are in waiting.

Thank you for your tough skins and your soft hearts.

I pray that we remember your soft hearts.

I pray that we can provide a safe place for you to come home to.

I pray that you will never feel alone.

We are grateful.


©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big YES™  All Rights Reserved


Today in church, all the veterans were asked to stand in honor of Memorial Day.  They stood and we clapped in thanksgiving for their service.  This was so moving to me!  It made me think about how the war(s) seem so far away.  Since I’m not in the military and no one in my family is either, I feel separate from them.  This made me realize I am not separate from them in any way.

The soldiers that fought for our freedom live among us.  The soldiers that have not died are in our churches and in our cities and they live beside us.  How can we not be in a continual state of thanksgiving toward them?   Our lives and our opportunities and our liberty would not be possible without them.  We owe them our gratitude. 

It is so easy to get wrapped up in our lives that we forget.  This is why our nation (rightly so) dedicates a day to remember. 

So, to all the soldiers, thank you.  It is not enough but it’s all I’ve got to give you.  I vow to live my life in a way that honors what you have done for me. 

To all the wives of soldiers, thank you.  As a wife, I stand in awe of your courage and your selflessness.  I can’t imagine what it must be like to worry every time there is a knock at the door.  I hope you find comfort in knowing that you have married a man of decency and honor. 

For the husbands of women that are in the military, same goes for you.  Thank you for your support of your wife and our country and for your selflessness and sacrifice. 

To all the children of soldiers, thank you.  Always stand tall and always be proud of the sacrifices your mom and/or dad made and the courage they have shown.  Always know that you come from good people and you should be SO PROUD.

To all the military leaders, thank you for your strength and courage and determination.

To all the presidents of the United States, the Commanders in Chief, thank you.  We honor you and your sleepness nights and the heavy burden that you carry.  For those of you in the past, we honor your role in making this country great.  For our current president and for those to come, we pray for you to have strength and courage and wisdom. 

To all of our policemen and firemen and paramedics and doctors and preachers, thank you.

While I’m at it, I may as well throw a blanket thank you out to everyone who has ever been involved in protecting this country and what it stands for.  That’s too many people to thank here but just writing this has helped me to remember.  Freedom isn’t free.  Today, we honor those who have paid the ultimate price. 

Thank you.


   “They hover as a cloud of witnesses above this Nation.”

– Henry Ward Beecher

 ©2011 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved