I think the main thing I learned this past year is how to face the toughest of trials and still be happy. We as a family always joke that we "can't wait 'til 2012", and it's true for the most part. However, the past year has taught me that no matter how difficult of a trial we are going through, staying happy and positive can make it a whole lot easier. I didn't learn this on my own, however. I learned this from my Mom. When she was in the lowest of times, in the most pain emotionally, physically, and spiritually she has ever been in, all she could think about was others. She didn't care about herself, all she cared about was helping others who are suffering through similar trials as she was. As I think back about it more and more I realize how amazing my Mom is and the great example she is to all of us. When she could have very easily folded and complained and looked for people to give her things, or help her out, she did the exact opposite. She went out and helped others, made them feel better, even donated money to them when she was in a place of financial hurt herself. I tell people she is the most amazing woman I have ever met, and this is not an exaggeration. She loves others more than herself just as the Savior did. She has been through a gauntlet of trials and yet has remained faithful and trusts in God. What a great example and blessing this is to have a mother like this. I always tell my Mom to "stay positive and love her life." It was in the past year that I realized I need to practice what I preach even more.
Thanks Mom for your example and teaching me the above mentioned attributes that will help me throughout my life and even more importantly help others. You truly are the best Mom and most amazing woman in the world. Merry Christmas Ma, I love you!