Friday, May 28, 2010

Maria Spencer: What I've Learned

 A note from Kim and Julie: We extend our love and prayers towards Maria and her family as they grieve the passing of her mother.  God is showing Maria so much during this difficult time, and she granted permission that we could post her words here.  If you feel led, you may leave your sympathies in the comment section and we'll make sure Maria receives it.

I’ve learned a thing or two about life over the past nine days.
I’ve learned we need to hug each other more. My sweet baby girl Olivia has this down pat. She’s a hugger—even if you don’t want a hug, or ask for one, she’s giving you one. She has a gift of discerning those around her that would be receptive to a hug, and those who are just in need of one. Her giving, outgoing spirit shines through her hugs and she spreads her light wherever she goes.
Just like her MiMi.
I’ve learned that we need to give people flowers while they are still alive. Flowers for them to look at and enjoy, while they are here on this earth. Once again, my baby girl, Olivia understands this—she has a way of bringing out the beauty in a dandelion. We see them as weeds, she sees them as flowers. Flowers to give to her mommy, to make her smile. She spreads her innocent un-stained, flawless joy through the simplest things. Her goal is to make others smile just by being who she is, and showing us to see life the way she sees it.
Just like her MiMi.
I’ve learned that we need to say what we need to say—what we want to say—to others while they are here with us. Good or bad, happy or sad—if we have words that others need to hear, we need not question what others will think, and just speak from our hearts. And again, my Olivia could teach all of us how this is done. She sees others the way God sees them. She has no agenda. If there are words that she has on her heart, she speaks them out, without thought or reserve—she will tell you what she is thinking, when she is thinking it.
Just like her MiMi.
I’ve also learned that we are all in too much of a hurry. No one seems to have any time to do anything that truly matters in this life. We are all running so fast, doing so many “things” at once—sometimes we don’t even know the goal, or where we are headed. We all just need to slow down and enjoy life. Because my Olivia’s muscles don’t allow her to move as fast as other kids her age, she knows life no other way. When we are walking with her, and trying to get to where we are going in a hurry, it’s not physically possible. She forces us to slow down and look around at where we are at the moment, enjoy the scenery, and take in all of life that surrounds us. Most often, in these precious moments, she makes us smile. Because she enjoys each moment of her life, and is forced to move a little differently than we do, she is able to spread some love around with her shining, pure, beautiful spirit. She forces us to slow down, and she fills most moments with laughter.
Just like her MiMi.
So in the sadness of this past week, and as I have been struggling to sort through all of the emotions that surround this pain of losing my mother, God reminded me that I don’t have to miss her at all—Her spirit, love, voice, arms, and laughter are alive and well each and every day in my home.
Through her baby granddaughter, Olivia Joanne.

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