Monday, May 27, 2013

Random Acts of Kindness Blogfest--An Angel at My Son's Grave

This is my first post for  
The Random Acts of Kindness Blogfest
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(Also--at the bottom of this post--there's a list of other bloggers who are writing inspirational stories as well!)
In November of 2011, The Golden Sky was released. It was the most memorable year I've ever had--maybe even more so than when Cade and I were homeless street musicians in Hawaii.  From skydiving to visiting the Bahamas; from blogging each day to getting a book published.       
    Many tiny miracles happened so my book could be in print.  On Zeke's birthday, November 18th, I went to his grave and left a published copy of his book there.  It was my final way of saying good-bye.  I can't describe how that felt.  It was so bittersweet.  At the time I had a romantic notion that God and Zeke were guiding me.  I'd somehow leave the book and then the right person would find it and read it.  Silly idea, I know, but that's still what I hoped for.
    After returning from his grave, I wrote a Metaphorical Story about it on my blog.  That one tribute took so much out of me.  I cried and cried at the computer because I was finally saying good-bye--after years.
    Anyway, November moved into December.  Cade and I started fighting really bad.  My blog didn't see any of that because I cope with laughter.  Then the washer broke; my laptop died; one of my best friends found out she needed to leave the state.  Then to top all of that off, Doctor Jones put fish tank chemicals in her eyes and we worried she'd go blind!
    I sat on my bed and thought about how bad life sucks sometimes.  Seriously.  I remember when Zeke was dying.  The whole experience was terrible, but somehow I got through.  I prayed after remembering, because God had been the one who helped me the entire time.
    "God," I prayed.  "I'm worried about everything.  My life is falling apart.  I don't know what I'm doing anymore."
    The Scribe knocked on my bedroom door.  "Mom?  Are you okay?"
    "Fine," I said.  "I'm fine."  I cleared my throat, then wiped the tears from my eyes.  "I can be strong," my voice came out as a whisper.  After all, it wasn't like Zeke was dying again. 
    I swear I can be such a pansy at times.  Once my Aunt told me I'm her hero.  I nearly laughed.  Can you imagine me being someone's hero, yet I crumple when a washing machine breaks?  What's my power, acidic tears?
    Anyway, I went downstairs and hopped on the repaired laptop--that cost more than my life is worth, practically.
    That's when the tides changed.  I read a message on my Facebook Author Page--it was a random act of kindness! 

    This is what the message said:
     I loved your book and I left you a message here on facebook when you get a chance, you are a very busy woman!!! Thank You so much for sharing. May your family have a very Merry Christmas and may the New Year bring you a lot of Joy. :)

    I ended up giving the woman my e-mail address and you'll never believe this next part.
    I'm crying again as I write this.  Sometimes God's goodness is so amazing, so overwhelming it's hard to process.  We don't think He sees each of us and our needs, but He does.
    Here's the e-mail she sent to me (which she generously said I could share with you):

    Hi, I am sure you do not know me. You see Zeke's grave is right next to my sister's grave.
    I did go out to put some Christmas decorations on my sister's grave and Zeke's, I have been putting a little something on his when I go out there as well, and I came across a copy of your book. I did take the copy and I will pass it on to my sister and my mom as well. It touched me in ways that you will not know. I am so glad you let us share in it. I cried when I read the part when Zeke passed as well as many other times. You are a very strong lady, and I am glad you wrote the book. I am sure you will help many moms and dads that have walked in your shoes.
     I hope my sister is up there enjoying Zeke as well as a lot of your family members are. She loved children too.
     I just wanted you to know how I felt and to let you know that I will continue to leave things on Zeke's grave if that is OK. I feel even closer to him now that I know his story.
     We lost my sister to Breast Cancer at the age of 45, and I was very close to her.
    Once again, I just wanted to say thanks. You are very talented. God bless you and your family. Take Care

    She didn't have to read the book.  She didn't have to send me a message, but she did and her words have blessed my life for years now!  
    Not only had she read the book, but she'd been leaving things on Zeke's grave.  We live a good distance from him and just the thought that someone visited him when I can't--that was a blessing!  

    Here's part of my response:

    The fact that you got the book and read it seems like a miracle to me.  It's just amazing how things work :)  I'm so thankful that your sister's grave is next to my little boy's.

    Here's her last response:

    I felt the same way when I saw the book there. It was like it was there for a reason and I am so glad I was the lucky one to have picked it up. I am so glad you will let me leave things on Zeke's grave, I feel like he is part of us now too. What a great little boy and mom to have touched so many people and you still have a long way to go.

    Reading that e-mail, I realized something important.  There's a difference between letting go and saying good-bye.  After all, when you say good-bye, you know you'll see each other again.

    This Memorial Day, I'm heading over to Zeke's grave with my four living children.  I hope we'll meet this wonderful women in person.  Wouldn't that be neat--to tell her how much she blessed my life.

    Also, as a gift for the blogfest, I'm giving the eBook of The Golden Sky away through Amazon. If interested, you can download your free copy (from today until 5/31) HERE


  1. You just never know how life's path will go, and what kindness will flow. Awesome indeed.

  2. This touched my heart, the comfort of strangers, so sweet.

  3. Yes, I can totally see you as a hero- with how many lives you've touched and continue to touch everyday? I think that's heroic.

    And thank you for hosting this blogfest! It means so much to me to share my story with people, and to have it be one of many amazing stories is just wonderful.

    I hope you get to meet this kind woman and that you and your family have a wonderful Memorial Day!

  4. Thank you for this...
    We lost our grandson this past December. He was just born too early and though he struggled to breathe, he wasn't ready and passed. For my birthday this year, I asked for a star named for him. I was so excited to be his grandma and to know that there is a specific star that is just his would make me smile each night. The birthday is coming
    We go visit him each time we get to where he is. I know all about not being close to his resting place. It is rare, but when we go, emotion pours out of me and I grieve not being able to know him.
    You are a strong person and I can't wait to read your book. :D

  5. As always, your words touch my heart. I love how you have taken great pain, and with God's help, turned it into so much blessing for so many of us! He truly can turn ashes into beauty and that is visible in your life, friend!

  6. It doesn't take much to have everything turn from bad to good. Sometimes just a reminder there are people out there who care enough to send and email. Anyone reading this who hasn't read Golden Sky I recommend doing so it was an amazing book and touched me dearly.

  7. I am so glad that woman sent you an email. I just forwarded my email notice about your blog and the free books to my adopted sister. Your book helped me understand how she felt when her son died. I hope she sees the email and gets a chance to read about Zack if she desires. Richard was the name of the son she lost.

  8. It's surprising how things can turn around so quickly. You have touched so many lives. You are jewel shining in the dark, always an inspiration to me and other. Thank you for all that you do. This story is so heart-warming. It made me cry as I read it, bringing Zeke's story fresh to my mind. I hope you got to meet that lady today. Blessed first day on the Random Acts of Kindness blogfest.

  9. That's a very touching story. I'm looking forward to reading The Golden Sky. Thank you!

  10. I remembered that email exchange--but I still cried. I SO hope you get to meet her!!

  11. I hope there are more angels like her. I have downloaded The Golden Sky and will definitely read it. :)

  12. That is such an amazing, cool story. So happy she took the time to let you know she'd read it and loved it.

    Thank you for dreaming up this blogfest.

  13. I knew this event had occurred, but I didn't know all the details. It's just beautiful, and your writing is great.


  14. They say mood affects the immune system. If that is true, this blog pumps my immune system up all the time.

  15. That's amazing to know a woman like that. Thanks for sharing!