How can it be? How is it that today marks two years since we last held you? It doesn't seem possible that we are marking more anniversaries without you than birthdays we got to celebrate with you.
This morning as I thanked the universe for not stealing The Pickle from us on this fateful date, Momma started reflecting on lessons I have learned, realities that have changed, and new truths that have revealed themselves to Momma thanks to you and your magical Peanut Effect. A few that stand out:
- The world is not fair. No one truly "gets what they deserve." Terrible things happen to good people, bad people, all people. It's how you choose to rise from the ashes that shapes the kind of person you are, or can be.
- There is no greater, more powerful, fierce love than Momma love.
- If you choose to love, do so unconditionally, with reckless abandon.
- Give hugs freely.
- Stare your demons, your grief, your troubles squarely in the eye. Don't back down. Walk through the fire. You will emerge - scarred but stronger.
- Give yourself and others grace. Allow for the bad days. Don't apologize for them, but also don't let them become the norm or an excuse.
- Remember - everyone has a story. You have no idea what the person in front of you in the "20 Items Or Less" line, who happens to be holding 30 items, might have going on personally. A sick parent, child, spouse. An unexpected job loss. Death of a loved one.
- Your heart has room to love more than you can image. It also has the capacity to feel millions of conflicting yet compatible emotions. Sorrow, joy, hope, grief, anger can all exist side by side.
- Embrace hope. According to Wikipedia, "Hope is the emotional state which promotes the belief in a positive outcome related to events and circumstances in one's life." Further, "Despair is the opposite of hope." Choose the road that leads to hope.
Peanut, today Momma and Pickle will watch "The Jungle Book" and we will dance to King Louie's Swingdance (http://youtu.be/c9cWkUhZ8n4). I will read your books, view all your photos, read the hundreds of cards we received after news spread of your loss. But this day does not define you and the mark you left on this earth. Your legacy is found in the love and joy you spread across our family, friends and countless others you have touched - and continue to touch. The Peanut Effect. YOUR Peanut Effect.
Today Momma recommits to living a better, kinder, more purposeful life. A life that honors you. A life that makes you proud to say "That's MY Momma." A life that, when we meet again in heaven, will inspire you to run to me, throw your arms around my neck in a giant Peanut Hug, and give me butterfly kisses.
Today it breaks my heart to sign this letter. I wish I could smell you, touch you, feel the warmth of your breath on my cheek. Hear you whisper, "Momma..." in my ear. Instead, I send you my heart, my love and my tears to heaven. I love you, Peanut. To the moon - and back.