March 2, 2015 by CassieCravings
Nothing seemed extraordinary about that morning. If the neighbors took time to look, it looked like any other. Coffee in one hand, bouncing four-year old attached to the other. We piled into the car, and we began our commute to Monday. It didn’t look like any other morning, except that it was. That morning I practically shook with grief. I trembled with the effort of putting one foot in front of the other. I bit my lip so not to cry out in the pain of loss tearing at me like a winter wind. I didn’t realize I was crying until my son caught my tear as I buckled him into his car-seat. He took my face in his hands and kissed me. He didn’t say anything. Neither did I. A forced smile cracked across my face before I climbed into the driver’s seat.
I drove, and I thought. I’m not sure why I replayed all of the hurt, but I did. One event after another, they slid across my mind.
My brother was in the hospital. He has special needs and is chronically ill. He was rushed to the hospital just 6 days before. He was still there.
It was the eve of my mom’s double mastectomy. She has recurring cancer. There would be months of surgeries, recoveries and treatments to conquer it.
4 days before a very dear friend passed away in a tragic, unimaginable way. Her unborn son was also lost. The death of Blaire and her little boy was settling into reality. I was in the “putting the phone down right at the realization I can’t contact her” stage of grief.
In the car, on that non-extraordinary I cried out in prayer, “God, what am I going to do today? I can’t put one foot in front of the other.” I had no other words. For several moments, I just sobbed. In the parking lot of my son’s preschool, I slapped the steering wheel and wailed.
As suddenly as I lost my breath, I found it again. My mind was flooded with an image of me standing on God’s feet. It was like a daughter dancing on her daddy’s feet. There I was being held up by my Daddy as He moved me throughout the day. My feet never had to touch the ground, nor did I have to move those feet myself. Every step that day was taken by Him while He held me up.
It was the first time in nearly a week that I felt Comfort. I had been in survival mode, willing myself to function, to stand, to breathe. That moment gave me strength. I thanked God for that breath of Peace and Comfort. And I thought He was done.
Within the next couple of hours, He showed me four other times that He heard my cry.
50% over what I asked
I felt my heart pounding as I sat in the parking lot at work waiting on a text from my husband. We have been saving for many, many months for our adoption, so I knew the sacrifice I was asking. But I had asked anyway.
My friends and I had set up a fund to help Blaire’s family since she passed away. The ellipses blinked under my text for what seemed like ever. His reply was a simple text, just a few words, but it raised my offer by 50%.
Again I cried in my car. I allowed the grief and the simple, powerful words of my husband to wash over me. With a spare napkin found on the passenger’s seat, I wiped my tears, took a breath and walked inside of work.
A note and Coffee
I grimaced through the bids good mornings and the “how was your weekend?”. I smiled politely as I ducked my head into my classroom. From the doorway I could see it, that unmistakable white and green cup. I read the note and continued to cry, as I had all morning. But these were tears of appreciation, of thankfulness, as I was reminded again and again that God heard me that morning.
With my coffee in hand, I slipped into the office to check my mailbox for memos. At the very bottom of the box, was sticky note from the #lovethatsticks campaign put on by a local radio station. It was an anonymous note reminding me yet again that He heard me.
Donation to our Adoption Fund
It had not yet been 2 hours since that prayer. I was floating back to my classroom, swimming in the Comfort and Peace that only God can provide. A colleague stopped me. She said that she had been meaning to donate to our Adoption Fund, but she kept forgetting when she was at the computer. She slipped a check into my hand. “It’s not much, I know. I hope it helps.” That check was the exact amount of that extra 50% my husband offered! She probably wondered why I was sniveling in the hallway, but she was gracious enough to not wonder aloud.
Over and over God continued to whisper to me that He heard my cry. He put my name on the hearts of people who gave me tokens of love. Only a couple of these people knew what I was going through, only my husband knew the magnitude of the hurt. But they all responded to that nudging of coffee, of notes, of donations. I am so grateful for these tokens, for these people, for these moments that added up in such a meaningful way.
Today be someone’s token. It will be just a small gesture, but it may be what allows that person to put one foot in front of another.
* My brother has since been released from the hospital and is doing well!
* My mama has had her double mastectomy. The surgery went very well. She is quite a bit of pain, but she is fighting like a true champion. You kick cancer’s butt, Mama ❤
* We (Blaire’s friends) have started a memorial fund for Blaire’s husband, Will, and her 3 year-old daughter Rowan. Take 2 minutes and make a difference for this hurting family. We can’t do much to ease this transition, but we can set up 3 year-old Rowan on a well-paved road to education. We can allow for one less stresser over Will as he goes through this process. Click HERE for Love for the Emerson Family fund.
* Because of generous contributors we have raised over $2100 for the Ortiz Adoption! Thank you so much for your support!