Thursday, September 20, 2007

Good-night, Miss Myrna

I received notice today that a woman I know passed away. She had been sick with cancer for a very long time, and is now living pain-free in Heaven with our Lord. But, I was very taken aback by how strongly I reacted (emotionally) to the news of her passing.

I didn't know Miss Myrna very well. I met her at a concert, where she and BratGirl2 exchanged stones with their names on them, committing to pray for each other. As a family, we have done so, pretty faithfully, for 5 or 6 years now. We've never stopped. It may just have been "God bless Miss Myrna," but we always had her on our hearts.

When I gave birth to BratBoy, I was given a diaper bag, which was lovingly made by--you guessed it--Miss Myrna. I used that diaper bag almost daily for over 1-1/2 years. She made them for all new moms in our church.

Occassionally I would run into Miss Myrna, and she'd always give me a huge, warm smile. She had a joyful spirit, and a way of making me feel like she was genuinely happy to see me. She'd always ask me about the kids, and how our family was doing, and she would tell me that she continued to pray for us. I would tell her that we pray for her, too.

I knew she was sick, but I didn't realize how sick. I had thought about visiting her in the hospital, with the kids, but was concerned we'd give her a cold, so I didn't go. How silly of me! I meant to send her a card, but I never did. Why did I wait? I guess it's true what they say about "good intentions."

I was shocked when I heard that she'd passed. Did I thank her for the diaper bag? I think I did. But I don't know that I ever told her how much it meant to me that she prayed for us daily. I don't even know if I realized it before today. I hope she knew what a difference she made with her small gestures of selflessness. She set a wonderful example for me, my children, and all whom she came into contact with. She was warm, sincere, and caring, and I will treasure the brief moments I spent with her. I'm grateful to have known her.

What have I learned from all of this?
-Don't procrastinate. When I feel the need to say "thank you," or to let someone know that I appreciate them, I should do it right away. The opportunity to say so may not present itself again.
-Find some way, even if it's small, to give to others around you. Small things, like praying for someone every day, can make a huge difference in someone's life. Even if it doesn't, it can make a huge difference in your own life!

I hope, some how, some way, and some day, to make a positive difference in someone else's life, as Miss Myrna made in mine. I pray that the BratKids can learn to be giving, selflessly and sincerely, not because I expect them to, but because God does.

Thank you, Miss Myrna, for all you've done for me and my family. I look forward to seeing you again, someday, in Heaven. Sleep well....