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Life’s little lessons

Today my niece Madison Faith celebrates her seventh birthday.
Ah, a kid’s b-irthday party: a regular rite of passage for any child, a moment in time where cake and ice cream are the most amazing things you can hope for and presents are just the right way to end the day.
Today, as well as calling to wish her a ‘Happy Birthday,’ I am reminded of just what I have learned from her in seven little years.
It seems funny to think of learning something from someone so young but she was teaching my family even before she was born.
When we learned of her impending arrival, it came with the grave news that she was in trouble and that a congenital heart defect would limit her chances of even being born at all.
During that time, I learned that heartfelt prayers and calling on the faith of others was something that we shouldn’t wait to do until a crisis was upon us.
When she was born and I sat beside her incubator in the ICU watching a less than 24 hour old baby who had already been through surgery fight for her every breath, I learned the power of positive thinking.
As I pulled up a rocking chair and read that little girl storybooks, I knew she would understand my wanting to be close to her and I knew with every painful swing of her arms and legs, she heard every word and that she was fighting to come home.
When we brought her home only to take her back to the hospital a few days later, I learned the art of taking one day at a time.
We had all been so focused on bringing her home and pushing for that day that we hadn’t focused on just taking her or our small victories and celebrating them in the moment.
When we celebrated her first Christmas and put her in a cheery red velvet dress and took lots of pictures and the whole family was there, I learned that we should have family get-togethers more often. (I also learned that baby spit up stains white blouses if not treated immediately – thanks Madison!)
When she begged me to let her play just a little longer in the MacDonald’s play land instead of getting on with our day I learned the greatness of seeing a free spirit in motion and to not hurry about your day to get things done, life’s best moments are not things that can be crossed off a ‘to-do’ list.
When she started school and got in trouble for talking too much and to anyone she saw (my sister says Madison gets that from me), I was reminded that being friendly to others is not necessarily a bad thing and that sometimes people just need a friend.
When I call her and she tells me how much she misses me and how much she loves me, I am reminded that loving your family with your whole heart and telling them so is never something that should be taken for granted.
So today, as I reflect on seven little years and one bubbly, beautiful girl, I am thankful for all the lessons she has taught me and for the lessons that are still to come.

Candie Beck-Adams is community editor at the Ennis Daily News and can be reached at candie@ennisdailynews.com

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Posted by on Jun 24 2008. Filed under Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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