The last five years have been anything but easy. Our family has suffered through countless tragedies and major stressors. Sometimes a smile after all of that can feel impossible to find. Happiness can seem elusive or like its all together a myth.
I am not the same person I was five years ago. At that point I was 24-years old and a brand new mother to twins. I was exhausted and so overwhelmed as I was thrust into motherhood times two. Then when my daughter was diagnosed with cancer just after my 25h birthday I had no other choice but to rise to the challenge. To love her well for whatever time God allowed me to keep her.
Today I am nearing 30 and the challenges of this life have most certainly changed me. I lost my only daughter nearly 3.5 years ago to cancer. Her death was the realization of my very worst fear coming true. It should have been enough to break me completely. But somehow it didn’t ruin me. Instead God used her life and her death to bring me closer to Him. I miss Olivia like crazy but I am better because I am her mother. You can’t be in the presence of that kind of true beauty and not have it change everything about you.
Life is still far from easy. As yet another new chapter begins I trust that somehow, some way I will find that ever elusive happiness. That peace and joy that comes from finding real rest in life. Until that day comes I will continue to put my trust and faith in Him.
The Olivia Caldwell Foundation is a 501c3 nonprofit that raises money for pediatric cancer research in memory of Olivia Caldwell, who passed away from brain cancer at 20 months old in October 2013. The foundation has now given $155,000 to pediatric cancer research teams at Children’s Hospital Colorado and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in just three years. You can learn more and donate by visiting www.oliviacaldwellfoundation.org.