The Good Wife

The anguish was irrefutable. The anxiety was palpable. My 80 year old uncle lay in a hospital bed with acute pneumonia and was as frail as any of us had ever seen him. The beeps from the monitors and hollowed sounds of the respirator were a constant reminder of where we were in life’s timeline. We all sat perched on the edge of the question; what’s next? Doctors said plainly that things didn’t look good; it’s as if no one knew the answer.

She came to the hospital and sat at his bedside everyday. At times being able to recite their story from beginning to end, while at other times not knowing who the man was that was hooked up to so many machines. So we waited. And true to form and in His own time, God knew what the answer would be. Although a death had recently befallen our family, today God had given us His answer: “Not yet…”

Rafaela and Eugene have walked through many storms in their fifty four years together, but they’ve also seen just as many rainbows. Their children and grandchildren are a constant source of pride. Today she smiled saying “thank you, Jesus” as her beloved finally opened his eyes and looked at her.

She grabbed my hand, looked at me and said, “Ahhh thank you, God… I’m so happy!” Her eyes tell us her story. They often look tired and weary. Like a glitch of an aged t.v. set, her memory fades in and out. She may not remember anything significant about yesterday, but she can recall with vivid detail her days as a young girl in Panama and how that country and her own mother, my grandmother, shaped her into the woman she was to be.

But again she looked me, asking “Are you Silvia?” I shook my head. “No Tia, Silvia is your sister… I’m your niece, Lisa.” Her eyes smiled as if remembering my place in the family tree. “Ahhh yes, my Leeeeessssaaa! Thank you, Jesus! I’m so happy!” Her happiness and strength washed over me and with tears welling up in my eyes (happy tears, of course!) I said, “Thank you Jesus! I’m happy too Tia!”

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.” – Proverbs 18:22



When You Believe…

Tis’ The Season… To give thanks. So, here goes:

First, I have to admit, 2011 has been a rough year. It’s been a year of personal trials, tears and a few set backs, but it has also been a year of new discoveries, opened doors and amazing opportunities. My life is this wonderfully complicated mixed bag. And quite honestly, I’m grateful for it all. I’m looking forward to stepping further outside of some comfort zones that I’ve cushioned for far too long. I’m ready.

What I’ve also discovered this year is, as you look to whatever ventures you are planning for next year, check out the best of what happened in your world this year. Have you conquered a fear? Made a new friend? Discovered a new talent? If so, celebrate it! My best this year? In a word: Belief. The belief that anything is possible. I’ve struggled with the belief in myself and all the things I was capable of. It’s crazy that I even admitted that out loud, folks. But there it is. Here I was, walking around in a desert of disbelief in who I was made to be; with the sands of doubt and fear flying all around me. But I now know, it is possible to take that leap of faith and land firmly on both feet. Life is working my bouncing skills; and you know — I’m alright with that! Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they’re supposed to help you discover who you are. And with that, I want to thank you all (those of my past, present and future) who have challenged me, cheered me on and even those who have run the race with me and allowed me more opportunity to believe in myself and my dreams — I appreciate you for all that you have been, are now and will continue to be.

“Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.” — Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.