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Midway or Halfway

By Gina Gippner

it’s interesting that the definition of mid is: found or occurring in or around the center of or halfway through something. In June I will be turning 46, and I can actually write that I’m probably midway through my life, and am glad that I’ve been given the gift of life to even make it to today!

My past has been an interesting journey. I was born into the typical American family of divorced parents. I truly never saw my biological father again after my 12th birthday and by age 20 I had finished college, married and before my 21st birthday I gave birth to my only son. Within four more years I gave birth to two daughters, and that would conclude my birthing days.  

By the time my oldest child was five we moved our family from the city to the country, and raised them on a farm. My children would learn firsthand how their forefathers lived, and would learn the value of what it was like to raise their own meat, and grow their own vegetables. It was a wonderful life, and as my children grew I knew that my life would end up grand… or so I thought. 

During the time I was raising my children I became ill for years. Surviving everything from Cancer, to now living with Lupus, but I love the word “survive!” I believe everyone is a survivor of something. Even a hangnail can be devastating for some, and if they can get through it… they too are survivors!

But then on September 11, my world forever changed. My son joined the Marines, and within the year my husband moved out. I had two daughters living at home, and all of a sudden I found myself having to find a job that would support us, and I had to stay positive knowing that my son would return from this war, and within three years he did.

A few hard years went by and I realized that I was able to keep my home. I had no savings, no retirement, but this grand roof that didn’t leak when the rain came. One day I was sitting alone in my living room and realized that everything I thought my life would become, was not what it had became. I realized that what I thought should work out, had only turned out, and that’s when I began to realize that life wasn’t about living for tomorrow, but living for today and that’s when I decided to follow my heart.

So, I worked another year, and put as much money away as I could. My whole life I had one dream and that was to start my own business that provided comfort toys for children in hospitals. By the end of the year I had a savings that was big enough for me to live off of, and do the business. Now, nearly six years later, I found that what seemed to be devastating, was only preparing me for a time such as this.

As of February 26, 2009 I have 2,000 comfort toys that arrived and are ready to get into the hands of children at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and if this is what midlife feels like then I can honestly write…  I’m glad I lived long enough to experience it, and if tomorrow never comes then age 23 was priceless!



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