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Breathless Moments

Day 129

I have had moments in my life that will be engrained in my memory forever. Some are beautiful memories and others are more difficult, but regardless, they all took my breath away.

Life and Death Moments

IMG_1549These moments, the birth of my children, holding my grandchildren for the first time, and the death of my parents and my sisters, were all moments which made me realize the strength, power, and fragility of life itself.

I can still hear my grandfather’s voice as he told me he prayed to be allowed to live long enough so I, the youngest, could tell someone when I hurt or was afraid. To know his measure of love still takes my breath away.

Heartfelt Moments

I was married more than once, but with a little time and distance, you know when you get it right. I remember before my husband and I were married, we stood together, looked into each other’s eyes and agreed that if we were going to do this, it was forever. I was never more sure of anything in my life.

Watching my children get married and watching them create a family of their own definitely takes my breath away. It’s when you know the first phase of your parenting is over — until the grandchildren arrive. Those times bring more breathless moments when you laugh and cry together and hope you help them make the right choices for their families.

Love and Loss

Do you remember your first kiss? I do. I remember the ‘rush’ — definitely a breathless moment.

Do you remember the way your heart feels when it breaks? I do. Unpleasant perhaps, but the evidence we are alive and feeling.

I remember my father’s hugs. They were the best and they took my breath away. When I found out he passed away, it also took my breath away so much so I wondered if I would ever breathe again — but I did. I had much yet to do.

God and Nature

Grand CanyonThen there are the moments when you are in awe of something so much larger and grander than mankind. The moment when you trust that God hears your words even when they are jumbled with tears or anger.

The moment I saw the Grand Canyon for the first time or stood upon the lookout at Jungfrau — breathtaking!

Those grand vistas are amazing, but I am equally amazed to watch the lightning bugs rise up out of the grass on a summer evening or to look into the eyes of a beloved pet and see the presence of love and trust,

Knowing You are in the Right Place

And then those breathable, breathless moments I have experienced when I know I am where I am supposed to be. Knowing the long and winding path has brought me to the exact place where I can be who I am and rejoice in the destination.

Sometimes the journey can be daunting — and the journey can take your breath away. But hold on — you will know when the hurdles are coming to a close and peace is on the horizon.

I hope you have many, many breathtaking moments in your life. I hope in the hard breathtaking moments, you find strength. For the moments where life begins, I hope you are amazed by the miracle of it all. And every day, big or small, I hope you will find a way to slow down and see the little tiny moments capable of taking your breath away every single day.

 

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Remembering

Day 93

The time is ripe for looking back over the day, the week, the year, and trying to figure out where we have come from and where we are going to, for sifting through the things we have done and the things we have left undone for a clue to who we are and who, for better or worse, we are becoming. But again and again we avoid the long thoughts….We cling to the present out of wariness of the past. And why not, after all? We get confused. We need such escape as we can find. But there is a deeper need yet, I think, and that is the need—not all the time, surely, but from time to time—to enter that still room within us all where the past lives on as a part of the present, where the dead are alive again, where we are most alive ourselves to turnings and to where our journeys have brought us. The name of the room is Remember—the room where with patience, with charity, with quietness of heart, we remember consciously to remember the lives we have lived.”
Frederick Buechner

Today Mom had a beautiful memorial service. Our hearts were touched by those who remembered her so fondly and with such love. We are tired and at a loss but as I told her in her last few days with us, we will be okay. Not the same, but okay.

Tomorrow we go home and I am sure grief will come and go like unexpected rain showers. We will think back about the time before this day and we will remember.

Godspeed, Mama.