Thursday, May 3, 2012

a bucket list: enjoying each new day

AOL alerts me (and the rest of the world) to a variety of news stories.  Some of them make me laugh, others are entertaining, some of them I wished I'd never clicked on.  But sometimes there are stories that tug at your heart; the kind of stories that encourage a more grateful attitude and a kinder, gentler perspective. 

I had one of those experiences this week.  I read about a little girl named Avery.  She didn't have long to live, so her parents created a bucket list for her and they did fun things every day and documented them on her blog.  I spent time reading about her life - thinking about her family and the pain, anger, joy, and helplessness & frustration they must experience daily.  Every happy moment would be tainted by the knowledge that death was near, that the inevitable would happen. 

I can't help but think of the children in my life when I read a story like this.  What would I do without little Zayah, sleepily wrapping his chunky little arms around my neck and plant a kiss on my cheek before going to bed?  Or watching Jake win his first trophy and seeing him beam?  Or seeing Chloe graduate from preschool, with a cap and gown, grinning from ear to ear?  Or how about seeing Benson, kick his legs and smiling til the cows come home?  Or Eva, saying 'duck' over and over?  It doesn't seem fair sometimes.  I know God has a plan and that he is aware of us.  There is comfort in knowing there is life after death, but it doesn't ease the breaking heart of today.
So the other day when I held Sophia on the front step of Jana's house,
and told her about the beautiful world and the things
she would be able to do, I felt grateful. 
We started her bucket list right then and there.
I picked a dandelion and blew it,
Sophia's first. 

So here's to you, dear baby, and Chloe, Jake, Zayah, Benson & Eva. 
May you grow to make many wishes
on dandelions and do many wonderful things...
so that your bucket list overflows. 

May we always remember
how lucky we are to have you.

For Avery, April 30, 2012.

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