Marrying the love of my life is truly the best gift God has ever given me. Although, I receive gift(s) each day when I wake up and am able to breathe a free life. Free from slavery, racism, and able to live a life doing what I wish within the means of my physical abilities. Yes, I have Crohn’s but I will never live within that mind-set that I am “limited” no one is. Our only limit is ourselves.
My mother has beaten a variety of cancers and auto-immune diseases which has truly shaped me into someone who lives not only for myself but for the people who can’t. She watches me walk / jog / run / dance without allowing the diseases to run me and she calls me her “hero” just because I push myself.
Who couldn’t push themselves if they knew they were looked at in that light by the person that brought them into the world? To be someone’s hero gives me an immense amount of honor.
I’ve been given the gift to meet a lot of amazing human beings that possess a vast amount of abilities that inspire me daily.
I’ve also been given the gift of meeting people who are not able to do much at all.
My mother took me to hospitals, retirement homes, and hospice related activities for eons before I could ever grasp what was actually happening in front of me … It was people fighting for their lives.
How astonishing is that concept? We all complain about our day-to-day gifts without considering that this task or whatever it is we’re complaining about could be abolished if we had to deal with the reality that we would be leaving earth very soon.
Can you imagine if you had to explain today why you wouldn’t be there for your child, sister, brother, father or mother?
I instantly think of my father who is also in the medical field as a physical therapist. Many of his patients are in the last stage of their life. He once told me that a patient looked at him and asked why it was important to do the tasks he gave them to because they were (XYZ) old and didn’t have anything to live for.
I respect that in our old ages we grow tired and wish to pass on so we can be with the people we love that are in heaven, but why is it that we don’t think of death until something goes wrong? We live as though we have forever to make our lives better or to mend a broken-heart, or to forgive someone who wronged us. That someone can even be ourselves.
The fear to live like we’re dying is because we’re afraid. We’re afraid of the finality it brings into our lives. We’re afraid to die which inevitably makes us afraid to live.
There’s so much we all want to, places to see, experiences to have but we live in the future and / or past so much that we overlook the amazing people, things, and sights we have right in front of us.
Glitter and sparkly things are happy and sometimes bittersweet reminders of life.
The glitter of someone’s smile, kindness, and laughter or the sparkle of the sun, rain puddles, or an ocean wave just before it crashes onto the sand.
I weep just to thinking about it because life is so beautiful; the good and bad.
To love life we have to seek out the beauty in the chaos of our everyday life. It’s all a gift right in front of us but we must open our eyes to see the beauty, glitter, and sparkle of it all.
Photography by Anna May. Make-up and styling by Ashley Meadows.