As most of you know, I started this project as a means of dealing with my grief and heartbreak … to look at the positive things in life … and laugh at the absurdities and quirks that seem to happen constantly.
But today is not one of those days.
Let me tell you a story.
Once upon a time there was a Wonderful Woman who lived a wonderful life and had two beautiful children and a loving husband with beautiful blue eyes. After some time, they were blessed with a beautiful baby Girl with gorgeous green eyes … who was born with cerebral palsy and was deaf.
The baby was not expected to live through the night, but the loving husband said, “If we just have faith, things will be well, and she will live.” Following a long night of prayer and anxiety, the baby did indeed live.
“See? I told you that if we just had faith, she would be all right” said the husband.
At this point, the nurse came in the room carrying the baby and asking what they planned to name her. Although they had another name picked out, the Wonderful Woman said “Her name is Faith.”
They loved her beyond reason and learned sign language and dealt with the various challenges that were presented.
Before too long, the Wonderful Woman and her loving husband were expecting another child when … quite unexpectedly … the loving husband was murdered … and the family was devastated. Even more so the following week when the Wonderful Woman lost the baby she was carrying.
In the chaotic, grief-filled weeks that followed the beautiful young Girl, Faith, became quite ill, running a fever that rose to 104 degrees at times. Of course the Wonderful Woman was exhausted with the constant care of a sick child, the grieving over the loss of her husband and baby, and the daily care of the two other children … and fell into a deep, deep sleep.
While asleep, she had a dream in which her husband was laying on a bed with a blue sheet, sobbing in grief. “I am so lonely here,” he said, “and I keep coming back over and over to get our daughter and you will not let her go.”
Shocked awake by this all-too-realistic dream, she went to check on her daughter and discovered that she was running a fever in excess of 105 … while laying on a blue sheet.
Fortunately, the fever passed … Faith grew up … and married a wonderful man … not unlike her late father. Her husband was also deaf … and in the due course of time, they were blessed with an absolutely perfect, healthy baby girl … with beautiful blue eyes … just like her late grandfather had.
Time went on and all was well with Faith, her husband and their blue-eyed daughter. The Wonderful Woman adored her blue-eyed granddaughter and marveled at how much her blue eyes looked like her late husbands beautiful blue eyes. And it made her very happy.
One day the good news came. After trying for years to have another child, the Girl and her husband were once more expecting a daughter. The blue-eyed daughter was thrilled at the prospect of becoming a big sister. And the Wonderful Woman was thrilled at the prospect of yet another much-loved grandchild.
As the pregnancy progressed, the Wonderful Woman had the opportunity to go with the Girl to the doctor to see the ultra-sound. And they were happy to see that the baby was a girl … with a full head of hair … which encircled her head like a halo. “She looks just like an angel” said the Wonderful Woman on seeing the blurry image of her soon-to-be-born granddaughter.
But the joy soon changed to shock. It was discovered that, although the baby was growing well, she had Down’s Syndrome … and a serious heart defect. Reeling from the shock of the news, the Wonderful Woman and the Girl, along with her husband, prepared for the arrival of the newest child.
“We have dealt with physical disabilities in our family before,” said the Wonderful Woman. “And we will again. I can come here again when the baby has heart surgery and help with whatever needs done.”
“And they recommend using sign language for children with Down’s Syndrome” signed the deaf Girl to her husband. “How perfect for us.”
“And I can help to teach her to sign” said the blue-eyed daughter.
And once more the little family looked forward to the addition of yet another child. And they decided to name the baby Hope.
And all went well until today.
While at the doctor it was discovered that the baby was in severe distress. An emergency C-section was performed on the Girl.
The baby … Hope … opened her beautiful blue eyes … took one breath … and died.
Everyone is devastated. The Wonderful Woman who, if you didn’t know, is my friend Texas Linda, whispered to her long dead husband “Well, now you have your granddaughter to keep you company … take good care of her.”
And the Girl, in between sobs, said “And we have a special Angel in Heaven looking down on us.”
As it turns out, all it takes is one heartbeat to win a family’s heart.