It’s February 27th.
My thought this morning as I woke up was, I’m glad I didn’t know Liv’s life would be so short. I’m glad we walk by faith and not by sight. There is freedom in not knowing the future.
Blessed be your name, says the song, when the sun is shining down on me, when the world’s all as it should be. Blessed be your name.
I’m glad we had the sunshiny happy years. I still see Olivia trying out all the flip flops our neighbors left outside their door in Papua New Guinea. I see her swimming in the Lagoon behind our house on Tsoi Island in the Bismarck Sea and playing barefoot in the tropical rain in Hoskins.
I remember her first dance recital stateside and the times I would go to her ballet class and sit in the back marveling at what a pretty dancer she was. When she played soccer I happily became a soccer mom and cheered her on even when she mistakenly scored for the other team. (Well, she said, I’m happy for them – it was their first goal all season.)
The carefree years brimful of laughter, harmless shenanigans and joy were a gift from God. As she said to me one day in the middle of her sickness with so much conviction as if to make sure I understood, ‘Mom, I have had a great life!’
Blessed be your name, the song also says, on the road marked with suffering, though there’s pain in the offering, blessed be your name.
It seems fitting and right to dedicate this day, Olivia’s ‘going to heaven’ anniversary, to remembering her life. Kim and I sigh, cry and look at each other with complete understanding. We were blessed to be her parents. We miss her.
The sun shone brightly all day. We visited our son and his family, hugged the grandkids and kicked some tires as we stopped at just about every car dealer from Greenville to Newport and back. (It’s a family joke and Olivia would have laughed.)
It’s evening now and I am full of thanksgiving to God for our dear, loving family, for grace in sorrow and for the hope of heaven. We are about to step into the month of March. Easter, the joyous holiday of victory over death, is on its way. I can hear the Easter songs already.
Each blogpost I write has a place for ‘tags’ or keywords. As I began to tag away, I realize these words mirror the emotions of the day.
Sorrow, loss, tears
Love, memories, laughter, sunshine
Family, hugs, love (again), thanksgiving
Easter, resurrection, Jesus
Heaven, Hope, Joy