Monday, November 3, 2014

"where I'm from…"

"I am from…"

In English, my name means famous
I'm from Rick and Vicky
From pasta and steak
On holidays.
I am from hockey and golf
I'm from fishing and tubing
and watching hockey
I am from the Lake,
the Golf Course, my get away
From "Stop picking on your brother!"
and "Never give up!"
I'm from That's My Kind of Night
and Tiger Woods: How I Play Golf
I'm from the Lutheran Church, God blessed me.
From a family that watches hockey
and will someday have mom cancer free!
In English, my name means famous
It means Hockey
I'm athletic and active
Nolan of the 
Hockey family, Westra family

(For the original poem and some ideas of how it can be used, check out the link below!)

Where I'm From, by George Ella Lyon

The above poem, with a map drawing next to it, was on the wall outside of Nolan's pod of classrooms at the middle school.

He would never have shared with me that he completed a project like this, or that he wrote about me.  Instead, I got to happen across it, while at conferences at school a few weeks back.  

Last night, we went to see Grandma at her Transitional Care Unit.

After a weeks of tryouts and a long weekend of scrimmages, while waiting to find out which hockey team he would make, Nolan chose to go with us to visit Grandma Mary Ann.

Colton, went to his service project with his confirmation class, at the Dorothy Day House, and helped cook dinner and then eat with the residents.

But Nolan?  Somehow seemed to know Grandma Mary Ann could use a lift.  

He's right.

She has been put through it.

She is quieter than I've ever seen her.  Flat in her affect.  No desire to get out of her chair and go very far.  Her suffering, real, tangible and hard to bear.

But somehow, she perseveres.  

And I try to use words for her to grab onto, and steady herself.

"Temporary." "Recovery." "Short-term." "Strength." 

And Nolan saves the best for last.

As the announcement for his team placement appears on his phone, he beams.

But without saying a word, he readies to leave.

As he goes to hug my mother good bye, without hesitation, he says, "Love you, Grandma."

Love wins in the end.  


  1. What a beautiful post. Congratulations to your son, and my best and many prayers to you, and your Mom. With lots of love and hugs from Ricka.

    1. Thank you so much Ricka! So great to see you pop up in my comments and leave such sweet notes! Returning those prayers right back to you~ xxoo

  2. Love always wins! Prayers for your beautiful mama, and endurance for you and Superman in this Sandwich Generation. Good moments to "just be" with mama.

    1. So true, Marcy, exactly what I am doing my best to achieve. I feel very fortunate, despite how hard it is at times, to be there with mom. I pray you are doing well!

  3. You have such amazing kids... much like their momma!

    1. You are very kind- I feel very fortunate with the wonderful teachers and church leaders, and great friends that surround my kids and are role models of who we hope they will be :)

  4. love wins in the end...just just beautiful

    1. Isn't that what it all boils down to? Feel blessed to completely experience that. And you are definitely part of that for me!

  5. How proud you must be of your beautiful family, Vicky.

  6. Sometimes I want to comment but my English is so bad!!! 2015 I will study English in a school. i had study for five years but it was a long time ago. I love to speak english and my dream is to be fluently to speak and read in English. Lovely family. I admire you very much, Vicky! Thank you to share your life.

    1. AnaCristina- I think your English is quite good! Keep trying, keep working, keep on! Yay for school- that will help too! Thank you for coming here to share with me sweet friend!!

  7. The love one has for one's Grandson transcends words. For her to hear these precious words from him is priceless. Hugs to them both.
    I would love to send her a card, Vicky. If you could share her address with me, I will send her snail mail. :)
    Love you,

    1. So great to see you here, Jackie!

      Mary Held
      201 University Drive South, Apt 301
      Fargo, ND 58103
      Fargo, ND

      She should be going back to her regular facility soon and this will be her address. So sweet of you to think of her and she will be delighted to receive mail!

      I pray you are well- think of you often!
      Love you right back!

  8. This is touching. How sweet your young lad is to his grandma. It's a beautiful poem too. Encouraging words always help a lot. Your mom must be content with all of you around showing big support.

    1. I think she is content- yet also working pretty hard to return to her apartment so we appreciate that as well. Nolan doesn't always express himself - its usually on the inside- but anything for Grandma!

  9. My dear friend,
    Love, love, love this post! What a wonderful glimpse into Nolan's mind and heart. I hear so much steadfastness in his words, words forming the young man he is and the young man he is becoming. I love that he made the choice to go visit his Grandma and it took no coaxing for the words, "Love you, Grandma" to escape his lips.

    And he's from Rick and Vicky and pasta and steak. And like his Momma, he's from the lake.
    And tears welled up in my eyes when he wrote that he's from a family that will one day have mom cancer free.

    You and Rick have raised such a fine young man, that Nolan. He's heard your messages and thoughts and words loud and clear..."Stop picking on your brother," brought a smile to my face and "Never give up!" Guideposts for life inside him. He knows God blessed him.

    You're a great Momma to both your boys, Vicky. They love you to the moon and back again.

    Sending you hugs and loves and prayers, always prayers.

    1. I was teary-eyed too! He doesn't express himself in this way to us- so to see it was a real treat. And the wall was filled with so many others- so all of us parents got the gift of this art and poetry.

      Much love and prayers coming right back to you!!

  10. Nolan is already a man, isn't he?! Kind and strong and sensitive--he has a bent toward doing what's right.

    Love this post, my friend. And your man/sons's heart.

    1. I pray that he does, Julie, keep leaning towards doing what is right. I noticed the comment I tried to post from my phone didn't go through on your blog. I loved your daily surrender post and will be looking forward to the next installment soon! Love to you!

  11. Okay, that last line got me. Tears. Hugs...

  12. Love that poem. Such a lovely post. Makes me sad and happy at the same time.

  13. Checking in Vicky. Love this post. Nolan is turning into a wonderful young adult. They grow fast don't they??? You and Rick should be proud.

    PS. Blessings to your mama

  14. That poem moves my heart deeply. What an incredible job Nolan did encapsulating so many beautiful, strong, worthy, and powerful influences in his life and I love the hope he has woven into the lines and how he knows who to lean on, and into. And while I've told you Colton reminds me of Hunter, Nolan is so much more Hannah when you talk about the fact you would never have known of this incredibly special poem if you hadn't stumbled upon it. They are these amazing people that have to be discovered. Waters that run VERY deep. What a tribute these beautiful boys are to you, to Rick, and to God's grace.


I welcome what you have to say. Thanks for taking the time to grace me with your thoughts and words!

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