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My Dad passed away a year and a half ago. I've wanted to write about his dying and death for two years. It's difficult to put it all into words. Not because it was "sad", although in ways it was. Mostly it was a lovely, positive surprise. My dad gave my sisters and I something we never could have imagined. It’s hard to explain the significance of three women in their mid 40s having 9 months to share, heal and hear their father admit his weaknesses and apologize for his mistakes, so believe me when I say it’s overwhelming. He was able to give us the one thing we needed from him before he left this earth and we were able to give him a peaceful death. I wonder at how truly connected it all seems. I suppose that’s been the most surprising part. The connection he made with us completed something that I have no words for.
It's important to me to share this here because, once again, the connection between life and death is so undeniable ~ so tangible. Coming face to face with death is life changing ~ for everyone involved. To take death lightly, to not realize the connect with life, is almost impossible. The death of a loved one can be a cross, or a gift, or a lesson, but in any case it has deep meaning for those left behind. It's an inevitable part of life and for that reason alone we need to think about it, face it, deal with it, accept it, even embrace it. No matter how difficult.
Just as life is a gift directly from God ~ so is death. Our "time" to move on has come. It's not possible for us to will life, only God can do that. It is possible for us to take life through murder and suicide. This is never God's will.
When we murder our babies we not only rob them of their life, but we rob ourselves and the countless number of people that would have been touched by them; of the crosses they would have brought; the gifts they would have given; the lessons they would have taught; the experiences (no matter how small) they would have had and so the experiences of all of the people they would have come in contact with (no matter how brief). And then there's the generations, the descendants, they may have produced. It changes the world in profound ways. It interferes with God's will. It interferes with eternity.
I wonder how many people who are pro-abortion or pro-choice know someone that they honestly think should have been aborted. It's an evil thought ~ because it's an evil act. Who do we think we are?
Ahhhhh, yes. We have a new baby; a daughter; a sister; another person to love. I read a magazine article some years ago written by a mother of a large family. She said that people often asked her if there was enough love to go around. Her response . . . the love isn't divided, it's multiplied! Truer words were never spoken. The joy!
We waited for this baby longer than we'd waited for our previous babies. We were starting to think it wasn't going to happen again. Once we found out she was coming, she came home faster than any of her brothers ~ ~ ~ in less than 24 hours. Surprise!
We're going to call her Koala Bear (because her brothers have decided that's what she is to be called) for our little blog. She is beautiful, precious, sweet, calm, happy, content, and pink. I had NO idea it was possible to love the color pink so much.
Flash forward two years . . . yes, that's how long ago I wrote the above. It's all still true and I do want to introduce our baby girl if for no other reason than to celebrate her birthmother, who made a very brave decision. Without giving away too much private information, it's important for me to say that placing our baby girl for adoption was extremely hard for her birthmother. She agonized for three weeks and had a hard time even speaking for several days. In the end she put her baby's future before her own pain. A sacrifice that goes without due acknowledgment to birthmothers. It's truly amazing.
So here's to birthmothers and to adoption and to baby girls (they really are different than boys!). God bless us, everyone!
I couldn't help but think of all the souls that were aborted, and thus robbed of their time on earth, when I read this today.
~ From Secrets of the Interior Life
by Bishop Luis Martinez
The human soul is precious and delicate. It came forth from the divine lips as a most gentle breath; it is cleansed and rendered beautiful with the divine blood of Jesus; and it is destined to be united with God Himself to participate in the life and in the ineffable mystery of the Most Blessed Trinity.Such an exquisite jewel must be handled with consummate delicacy. That is how God treats it, and that is how we should treat it. What an atmosphere of purity of mind, of peace, and of delicacy ought to surround a soul for it to achieve it's sanctification!The soul is a delicate thing: a reflection of God, a breath of the Most High. Let it be treated as it deserves.
I have three people in my life that are dying as I type this ~
One is the father of a friend that I grew up with. A very special man to his entire family, and to me. He lost one of his legs in a gunshot accident when he was 15 years old. The first time I saw him I was 12 years old and I was not aware of his "leg". I was standing in the entry way of their house waiting for my girlfriend when he came hopping down their hallway on his only leg (with his sweatpants pinned up on the side of his missing leg) yelling, "Madeline, where's my f_ckin' TV guide?" To say he made an impression would be an understatement. The funny thing is that my first impression was not a true depiction of this loving husband and father.
The second person is one of my favorite people on the face of the planet. She's not a relative, but our family made her one of our own when she started dating my uncle when I was four years old. Their relationship lasted about 10 years, but she was too special to let go, so we didn't. She had an extremely difficult childhood, growing up with two violently alcoholic parents. When she shares stories from her youth it's hard to believe that someone can come through such things ~ especially someone so extraordinary.
The third person is the mother of one of my son's teachers. She is the mother of eight children and her youngest is five years old.
These three people have little in common, but they've all made their mark on our world and they all have loved ones ~ family and friends and family of friends and friends of friends and co-workers and acquaintances that are going to miss them when they're gone. People who are going to grieve their loss. They're all going to leave a hole somewhere in time and in many people's lives.
So many refuse to view abortion as death. I imagine that for them that's the beauty of not admitting that there was ever a life to begin with. No life = no death. It's hard to imagine the immense hole left in our world because of the death of the millions that have died before they were even allowed to be born.
If we stop and think, even for a moment, how many lives are touched by one person . . .
Black Bear recently celebrated his birthday. Birthdays are big around here. When I woke him up that morning, all tingly and a little bouncy with happiness, I was almost speechless.
"Happy Birthday", I said with as many kisses as he'd allow before he turned his sleeping face away. I made his favorite breakfast and packed his favorite lunch. Every time we looked at each other I said, "Happy Birthday". Every thing I said to him was preceded by, "Happy Birthday".
He tried to make an escape that morning without me noticing . . . fat chance. I went out to the car and when I opened the door Black Bear said, "Happy Birthday".
"Oh, no! It's YOUR birthday, but it's MY mother's day!"
He looked at me with his half smile and nodded one simple nod of understanding.
"Happy Birthday, have a great day!", I said.
"Happy Mother's Day", he said.
I know that Mother's Day is the second Sunday of May. It just seems (for me) that day is more about Our Lady . . . my mother . . . my children's birth mothers . . . all of you other mothers. But MY mother's days are the days my children came to me, and especially the day my first child was born. The actual day I became their mother. The whole idea and joy and gratefulness of being a mother is so tangible to me on those days.
I have a coffee cup, given to me by my mother, that I make a point to drink out of on my children's birthdays and on their birth mother's birthdays. It reads . . .
"When I think of all the things that would have never been if you had never been . . . I celebrate the day you were born." ~ Flavia