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Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Heart of Life is Good

Pain throws your heart to the ground
Love turns the whole thing around
No, it won't all go the way, it should
But I know the heart of life is good

-The Heart of Life is Good, John Mayer

Oh, I know it's good.

Sometimes that "heart of life" is overshadowed and buried in grief and sadness and worry. And then other times it shines through all the muck and there is beauty.

I experienced some of that heart of life stuff when I received a large envelope in the mail from one of our coolest friends, Jennifer. Wouldn't you know it, she knew I really wanted this book called Just Because, by Rebecca Elliott. It's a children's book about the author's two children - her severely disabled daughter, Clemmie, and her younger son, Toby. She writes about life with Clemmie from Toby's perspective. Here's an excerpt.

"My big sister Clemmie is my best friend. She can’t walk, talk, move around much, make macaroni, pilot a plane, juggle or do algebra. I don’t know why she doesn’t do these things. Just because...Clemmie has a great chair. Last Tuesday we went to the moon on it. I don’t know why we didn’t go to Jupiter as well. Just because...Clemmie doesn’t mind it when I bang things really loudly or chase the cat or eat the crayons. Sometimes I do these things just because."

The writer's goal was to highlight the positives of having a child with disabilities. The book is beautiful and the gift Jennifer gave me last week by sending me that book was beautiful. It reminded me of how much good is in this world. It reminded me of that "heart of life" thing again. And I really hope she knows how much it meant to me.

On Rebecca Elliott's website there is an article she did for Practical Parenting (UK) where she offers tips for parents with children with special needs. Her 5th tip pretty much spoke to me and some of the worries I've been having.

"Don't let yourself worry about the future, it will take care of itself so there is no point fretting about it now. Take one day at a time and enjoy all the great things about your child."

Sound advice, Miss Elliott.

So enjoy we did! We seized the day today and visited Mt. Lemmon. It's our mountain oasis just about an hour away.

And loosely quoting the movie The Road, "If this isn't of God, then God never spoke."

We took the kids for their first mini-hike.
(Gabe wasn't there because he was visiting his Grampa. Next time, though, we already have plans for just the three of us, sans the monkeys.)

And since there's always room for sensory stuff, Christian felt his first pine cone...

...and didn't much care for it.

We found that "heart of life" thing and grabbed hold of it today. It was in the sunlight over the mountaintop, it was in the way we wrapped our babies in sweaters and blankets in the cold mountain air, and it was there when we drove down the mountain talking about the next time we'd visit or when we'd see the snow again. It surrounded us today and it was good.
I know it's good.

1 comment:

Meredith said...

I love this post--what a wonderful family outing! The quote is really resonating and uplifting...I'm going to pass it on. You look gorgeous by the way! =)

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