Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Important Things I Have Learned in the Last Month

1. Stop complaining about my boobs.

They haven’t tried to kill me yet. A friend of mine from church has been battling breast cancer. She is winning and doing it with humor and grace.

2. Get in photos with my kids. 

A man at church lost his wife to leukemia. His four young kids lost their mother.

The day of the memorial I was in the shower thinking about what I was about to do and the woman we were honoring. I found myself thinking… oh, I hope they have some good photos of her for the memorial! Then I realized I was kicking myself. They whole time she was sick I was thinking of all of the things I could not do for Kelly and her family. I could not heal her, I could not make her well, I could not find a marrow donor for her, I could not make her body accept the donation, I could not could not could not. It makes you feel helpless, frustrated and small, all those can nots. I never really got to think of the things I could do because with all the could nots I just shut down and stopped thinking about it all together. (I hope as I mature and grow I will learn to push past that point of shutting down so I can be helpful. I imagine this is a characteristic those who are “good” in these kinds of situations possess or have learned through experience.)

The day of the memorial I realized something I could do but had not thought of. I could take photos of her, of her family together. I should have but I just did not think of it. The photos they had were wonderful, I am pretty sure that her smile could have shone through any old photo so no worries there but I wish I had thought to offer some family photos.

I realized something that day that sort of broke my heart. You see, her husband had put together this wonderful slide show of photos and videos of her. She was smiling with her kids and looking like an amazing, beautiful mom. She might not have thought her hair was just right, maybe she didn’t have mascara on, or maybe she just didn’t feel pretty those days, who knows. Maybe she just didn’t worry about those things because she knew better. I don’t know but I know she was in photos with her kids. I am rarely pictured in photos. I am either behind the camera so I am not in front of it or I am avoiding it because someone else has it. I would be almost invisible in a slide show of my family. If I died today my kids would have few photos to remember me by and this is a terrible fact.

My kids would not care about those things that make me uncomfortable. They love me as I am. So in honor of Kelly I am getting in photos with my family. I will no longer be visible only in the reflections of their eyes in the photos. I will be in front cheesing it up too, no mascara and all.

I did not think to offer family photos to Kelly’s family but if and when I have the opportunity to offer that to a family in this situation, I will.

Thank you Kelly.

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1 comment:

Keri said...

Love it!