The stars aligned when I met Nick. I tell ya. If anything has ever aligned… those stars did. Like, perfectly. Everything. Made. Perfect. Sense.
Three years later, my universe spun out of control when my own personal piece of perfect sense was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
When Nick died, he was 27. And, all he had ever wanted was to be a dad.
Our daughter was 9 months old, asleep and dreaming, when I held my husband as he took his last breath.
All I ever wanted was to be a good wife. And, there I was…26 and a widow.
Weird how things work out sometimes. Weird how sometimes they can seem like they just… don’t.
Life from today’s (or, any given day’s) viewpoint doesn’t always make a lick of sense. But, faith stirs in my heart and somehow I find something that tastes like pure truth. 1. That one day it will work together for good. 2. That all of this messy dark will make sense. 3. That those big promises from the big guy upstairs aren’t just talk. It may be decades from now and I’ve come to accept that it may not be on this side of heaven. But I firmly believe it. Like, in my gut. Deep down. Like when the stars align and you just know that you know that you know: It will all work together for good.
I haven’t always been this way. Full of thankfulness, full of faith. But, I’ve found a few too many stories of mine that seem to make no sense at all, come full circle. And, I’m still pretty young. So, I’ve gotta believe it’s going to happen again. I’ve gotta believe that this is my life (and your life, our lives) if we choose to follow Him.
Even when I was a little girl, I always knew I wanted to write. And I read faster than anyone ever believed. Especially my teachers. They would constantly ask: “Are you sure you read that last page?… Ok… Well, what did it say?”
I used to lay awake at night in my teens because I felt like I needed to say something. Like I needed people to hear me. Like I saw things differently and the world, or even just one person out there, needed to know. Like maybe… just maybe, I could help somebody. I felt frustrated at times, for I felt I didn’t know exactly what I should say or who I should say it to. But, I felt born to encourage and I felt underutilized. I wanted to realize my potential and hadn’t.
I’ve practiced my way with words, lingered on the rhythms of sentences, and dreamed up compelling arguments my entire life. As a young(er) adult I wrote about fitness and health, then entrepreneurship, then I started in on marrying young in this day and age (I was 20 when I got married, it was 2008, and it was the best decision of my life), then a few dozen pages on loving your spouse… Back then, I thought I was an expert in all these areas. Now, I claim to know a tiny bit but not near everything (and I definitely don’t use the word “expert” anymore. That’s an icky word. Let’s not use it. None of us are experts of anything if we admit it). Nevertheless, the writing of all of it, of any of it, was ahh-maze-ing.
The dreams God stirred up in me as a young girl, as a (clearly overachieving) teenager, and as a college girl that worked writing into every job she’s ever had… weren’t there for nothing. I think God gave me this mind and these words for a reason. I think I have to tell my story. I think, when I told Nick and my story, that team magnotti helped many who were struggling with similar fights.
And, now, having been through all of this… I think, finally, maybe those dreams I used to dream have tiptoed out into the daylight, to try to become real.
Your Fears Can Only Consume You If You Let Them.
Did you skip over that heading? It’s important. Your fears… those things that keep you up at night… they can only consume you, hinder you, hold you if you give them your permission. You have to let them. You CAN choose not to.
As of late, my world has been filled with fears that have the power to hold me down – under a deep, dark mess of tangled hopes and confused dreams. My fears center around getting my message across pointedly, around building strong foundations in a busted-up-then-mended-up heart, and around being the best mother I can be to a daughter who deserves far more than I could ever give. But, I’ve chosen to follow my God because I DO know that “even if” (even though) it doesn’t make sense now. I know and choose to believe that God has a plan for me, despite the “bad” things that have happened.
I look back on the life I had with Nick and the lessons that I’ve learned, the people he inspired and I see some things that I can’t explain. There are some questions that I truly can’t answer. But, I also see something complete. Something insanely, wildly and delicately beautiful. Something fierce and real. Something that you can feel in your heartbeat, in your breath. Something that meant more than anything else ever has. I see the love and grace and mercy of our Father. I see not the end of a story, but the beginning. The hope: filled, instilled, and spread. ***
And Even If.. It Doesn’t Make Sense
Have faith, dear ones, because I know how scary it can get out there. How we can walk atop the waters… but if we dare to look down, that dark-blue-turns-black can feel way too close.
When this life makes sense, it’s easy to trust God with everything. When it really just doesn’t make sense at all, it can be the greatest challenge and learning curve you will ever face. All I want, in times of awesome… and even in times of utterly-not-awesome… is to be brave. So, I choose to trust. I walk… I fight… And, I write. Choose faith. Choose hope. Choose to see.
What do you think? Share here. Share now. Or… share with those you love. YOU can hold on to hope. I know you can. You got this.
(***Am I saying my husband had to get sick and go to heaven for me to write something that mattered to me? For God to use me? Certainly not!! Am I saying that bad things are God-ordained or part of His plan? NOPE! NO WAY! But, I am saying that He can work the good and the bad together for good. I truly struggled with this concept for the longest time.. I may try to tackle it soon, maybe in a video (good idea?). Its such a tough concept, but such an important one, to understand. The universal, “why do bad things happen?” I think I finally have a general understanding. One that I can live with until I can personally ask Jesus “What up with this ish?”)