Friday, April 29, 2011

Life is beautiful

Life is Beautiful!

You know what I am doing?  I am sitting bawling my eyes out over a movie. One of the saddest movies I have seen in a while and it caught me by surprise. I thought it was this nice sweet movie and then the turn happened and I thought it would never end.

As I was watched the story unfold, I felt I was getting hit with a shotgun full of memories.  Those memories I try to ignore.  Memories of pain that I never want to see again. I know you have seen those movies that bring memories flooding back and you want to run out but for some reason you are transfixed to endure it all to the end.  Well, that was the moment I was having.

At first, this poor guy…this very perfect guy falls in love with a deaf girl that has never found love because her Mom has suffocated her trying to protect her.   He helps her find her place in the world and to stand on her own feet.  As the story unfolds you find out her Dad has died and his Mom died of cancer.  Sad, right!  But then, she goes back to her Mom out of duty and has to give him up because her Mom does not see past that fact he is a waiter. She finally stands up for him and they are getting back together and well, he ends up in the hospital with advanced brain cancer.  Yep…the rest of the movie is all about him dying. But throughout the movie he is the most positive, hopeful, guy that only sees the beauty around him.  What a statement.

Why did all this affect me so much?  Because, at first all I could see was "how could all this happen to one guy?".  Such a nice guy, loved with all he had and lost it all. My mind obviously went to losing my Mom, so many times almost losing Olivia, times Dean and I just were not connecting and it almost spiraled for me into this horrible pity party.  Then the worst of it is that sometimes I feel horribly guilty.  Guilty because my girl lived.  Is that not awful.  But so many Moms I know, did not get that opportunity to have their kids and see them get better, not here anyway. 

And somewhere in the middle of it all.  The pity party, the reflection, the story in the movie I pulled from who I know best, God, and knew that the part of the movie that was crucial was not the sadness but the beauty.  The  beauty of the relationships that have held together through these horrible ordeals in my life.  So many have held my heart, my prayers and my strength by standing with me. What a blessing that will never be forgotten. 

The beauty of my marriage that has been rocked with all kinds of trials and tribulations.  The amazing truth is that when you put two people together, God has to be the third person in your marriage.  Sometimes, though not theologically sound, I think that is why we have the trinity. It is a picture that it does take three strands to stand strong.  Just two of us would never have made it this far.  But through love, friendship, forgiveness and God we have held on stronger and stronger through the years.  I never thought that would be possible.  But only beauty can come from the ashes of dying to yourself. The beauty of love as it unfolds, not in moments, not in the honeymoon, not in falling in love but from selfless acts over the years that transform us to be better people and better friends. To me, that is the beauty of love. 

Then of course Olivia. The beauty of her personality. The kindness of her heart.  The fact that she is a  spontaneous giver. The morals that have already been established in her heart that she owns. These are traits that are unfolding like a rose.  Slowly, her personality is starting to blossom again and I was not sure what it would look like.  She had been so angry and upset for so long.  But now, she embraces life. She soaks up every moment with as much enthusiasm as she can.  She still gets mad because she gets sick so easily but nothing like before. The rose is slowly opening as her heart is starting to embrace life again and I love being there for each moment.  That is the beauty of love.  Seeing through someone to their heart and loving them unconditionally. So, that when it is a season for the rose in their heart to blossom you can see those velvety, beautiful petals.

The most important part of beauty is seeing life through His eyes, His ears, His heart.  We can never even come close to being able to fully do that but we can try.  We can look into someone's eyes and ask God to help us see them as He does.  When words are spoken in anger, ask God to allow us to hear what they are really saying. When someone is hurting and wounded we can ask God to allow us to see their heart so that we know how to comfort them.  When we start looking around life is beautiful. 

So for me, my pity party turned into a celebration of sorts.  Thankful for the beauty that is all around me. Special friends, wonderful family, wonderful husband and daughter. I lost my Mom but I still have my Step Mom. She has given me so much love and support that I needed.  And if by chance my sister ever gets this far in reading my blog she might see how much I appreciate who she is in my life as well. My friends has sustained me through so much and loved me unconditionally. My husband, well, words cannot express all that he has endured personally and endured with me and still stood.  That is beautiful love that makes us all very rich people. I may not have two pennies to rub together, like my Grandfather would say but I have more love than can fill the Mississippi river.  And if you have ever seen the Mississippi river you would know how beautiful that is too.

 The rest may fall. Jobs come and go…material things can go away but love and beauty will always last. I lost my job, life isn't that easy right now but I can do what I know how to do and that is live like God would have me live and trust Him with the rest by focusing on the beauty around me and not the worries that the world would try to put on my shoulders.  Not that we should not do our very best to do all we can do but when we have truly done our best….letting God carry the rest. Focusing on the beauty allows us to be grateful for all that we do have and not want what we don't really need.

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