Just one person is all it takes to make a difference in a person’s life. Maybe it is someone you just met. Maybe it is someone you have known all your life. Or, maybe someone you have never encountered. But, one thing you do know is that they left their imprint on your heart.
Last year, around the anniversary of traumatic event in my life, I was at the bookstore and drawn to a book called “Heaven is For Real“. I am not a big reader these days and I can’t even remember why I was there. But, I was. And, there it was just sitting on the shelf calling out to me.
That was the day two people, whom I have never met Todd and Colton Burpo, touched my life. Todd had written a book about his sons experiences while in heaven. Now for believers in Christ and Christianity, although not unimaginable, it was still an amazing story. After all, it is not often one gets to walk next to Christ and live to tell about it. For the non-believer, it is a far-fetched story that was completely made up and coerced. For me, it was about hope, joy and peace.
Hope, because thirteen years ago, after several years of trying to get pregnant, my husband and I were blessed with the news we were expecting. Thirteen years ago we were happier then we ever knew we could be. Thirteen years ago I went in for an ultrasound and saw my baby’s heart beat for the first time. But, thirteen years ago I was also diagnosed with cancer. And, Thirteen years ago I miscarried.
So how does hope, a book and a miscarriage relate. Well, if you have read the book you know, but if not I will tell you. While in heaven Colton met a girl, a nameless girl because her parents didn’t pick out a name for her, a girl we all learned was his older sister. A sister his mother had lost to a miscarriage. I was raised going to church and I have always believed in Christ. I also believed there is a heaven. But, I am far from a church-going, bible thumper and won’t profess to be, but I am a good person. Todd’s book and Colton’s story gave me reassurance that my baby is waiting for me. And it gave me hope that I would be able to hold her or him in my arms one day.
After reading that part of the story, I was excited. I had joy in my heart because I knew that she or he was not nameless and that he or she knew it. I had my son’s name picked out since I was younger and fell in love with the movie “The Never Ending Story”. I also had a love of music, even though I wasn’t great at it. My son’s name was going to be Sebastian Bach no matter who I married. When I got married, by husbands last name was Blizzard. When I think of blizzards, I think of cold and snow, so I wanted a warm name to go with the last name. I picked Summer Breeze. I was so happy I had names picked out and that my baby did not go to heaven nameless.
Finally, the book brought me peace. I have been struggling with cancer for thirteen years. I am on my fifth reoccurrence. I have never been in remission. With each reoccurrence my health issues have become worse and worse. While I don’t think about dying everyday, I do find myself preparing for “just in case”. And while I hope to live well into my sixties at least, I would like to see Kat walk down the isle, I can’t help but think people should not feel sorry for me because I going home to be with my baby. Feel sorry for my family that still has to wait to meet him or her.
I have been fortunate all my life, having people who have made a difference in it. Especially in dark times, and trust me I had a lot of dark times. But it seems that God has always placed someone or something in my path to keep me moving forward. When you come close to dying, you think about the people you have met throughout your life. Not only did I think about them, but I wondered if they even knew that what they did made an impact. So, I decided to reach out and tell them. In doing so, I learned that one of those people had been having a rough time. What he did was so simple he didn’t realize it meant that much to me. When I told him, I think he felt a sense of pride and it made an impact on him. Even if it wasn’t long-term, that day he smiled.
I know Todd does not know the impact he made on my life by writing his son’s story, but he did. He was just one person reaching out and making a difference. Do you have someone like that in your life and have you told them?