Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Christmas

....when you give of yourself...you truly give." Kahil Gibran

A friend sent my girls $20 for Christmas. My ten year old held hers up and danced around the room, singing, "I'm rich." 

That afternoon, her and I hung out at the mall waiting for my 14 year old to finish working at a local charity. We strolled into a shop where they had amazing teddy bears. My dgt. looked at me. "You like them, don't you? I'm going to buy one for you."

"No." I said. "It's too expensive." 
Ignoring me she picked up a small bear and looked at the price tag. "$18. I have enough. You like it. I'm buying it for you."
"No." I told her. "It's too much money and besides....that will use up all your money."

Ignoring me, she took it to the cashier. "I want to buy this bear." The clerk smiled and said, "That's 21.50 with tax."
"Here. Let me at least pay the tax." I moved to open my wallet.
"I can get this. Put your money away." My dgt. firmly said.
As the cashier wrapped the bear, she told my dgt. the bear's name, but that she could change it if she liked. My dgt. said, "The bear's not for me." Then she turned and winked at me.

My 10 yr. old actually winked at me...and took charge...and used her full $20. plus to pay for that bear. As we left the store, she slipped her hand into mine. "I feel really happy Mom, and you have to pretend you don't know what I got you, okay?"  I bent down and kissed her head. 

Love. It heals. It removes shame and fear and feelings of being unworthy. 
Love....it reaches to a place so deep...and feels so darn good. It's not about the bear....but the love my kid has for me. At ten....I was fighting to survive, hiding in closets in dark corners of the basement and under balconies terrified to get beaten. 

At 14 my other dgt. is giving of herself...helping community outreaches and making people smile. At 14...I was living on the streets...shooting dope and throwing up....feeling I had no right to life.

I've been given so much...more than I could've ever imagined. I used to think...there was no way out of the darkness...no way the nightmare I was living could be any different. But things did change...Now I realize the darkness does lift...and the good comes...we just need to hold on...and believe....even if it seems like it'll never happen.....

I want to live my life giving back..just like my girls. I want to live my life reaching out... telling anyone who'se fighting to survive like I did.....Don't ever give up. Never give in to the darkness....never let go of hope. Things change. They really do. You guys are the best....you've helped me believe in myself. Your comments...your encouragement...your support....has helped me push past the shame...and find my voice.

And reading your posts....your struggles...your hopes....your hearts.....inspires me to live my best life. I hope I inspire too in some ways... 

Merry Christmas Guys!!!

If you want to listen to this song....you'll have to close the music on my sidebar before playing this one. 

29 comments:

Finally Free said...

Merry Christmas to you Sarah... Your posts always make me cry happy tears. You are a great writer. You know how to touch my heart.

What a sweet and lovely story about your daughter. She sounds adorable.

Merry Christmas from Sunny Florida,
Tammy

Finding Pam said...

I agree with the previous comment about your daughter. It is wonderful to see that they get what is truely important in life. But then they have a wonderful example to follow.

Dolores Ayotte said...

Merry Christmas Nikki...I can see that you have already received God's choicest gifts with your two precious daughters, Shel and Sarah!

Colleen said...

Merry Christmas!

RCUBEs said...

No words here sister...I just know that immense feeling we get from the love of our children...They may have little yet too much to give. Their love overflows! God bless your loving daughters. And you! A loving mom!

Merry Christmas to you sister. I often look at the card and I feel love and thoughtfulness from my "forever sister" ;) [a wink I learned from your daughter :)]

[[sister Sarah]]

Short Poems said...

Great post and lovely blog. Enjoyed it!
Merry Christmas to you and your family Sarah
Marinela x

Dean Corso said...

Merry Christmas to you and your wonderful family. I'm honored to know you...
Dean

NOS said...

What a lovely story. It sounds like you have two really incredible girls.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Wishing you well,
NOS

MTJ said...

Hi Sarah,

I smiled as I read this moment you and your daughter shared; it is a touching expression of love.

I just recently heard this song by Celine Dion for the first time, and though I'm not familar with her songs, I found this to be very good. She has such a beautiful voice.

Throughout the months I've been reading your blog, I have found a consistent voice of faith and hope. You've shared with honesty what not only your life was like, you've also shared your personal growth and fears. I have appreciated your encouragement, grace, and friendship.

I send joy and hope for you and your family as you celebrate the birth of our Lord.

Blessings and peace.

MTJ

Denise said...

You are such a heart blessing, love you.

Lady Rose said...

Sarah,

That was very thoughtful and sweet that your daughter purchased that bear for you. It sounds like she has a great love for you, mom. I am sure that you will cherish this special momement in your heart, always. :)

-Lady Rose

Crown of Beauty said...

Dear Nikki...what a happy, blessed, love filled post...one perfect proof of how God turns our mourning to dancing, picks us up from the ash heap and places a crown of beauty on our heads.

A crown of beauty - that's what God named me, at a time when I could not even stand to look at the ugly face (mine) in the mirror...and now I feel the name is rising in my heart - for you, too! You are loved, no longer deserted or forsaken.

A blessed Christmas, dear Nikki.

Love
Lidj

Noelle said...

How precious! Your daughter exemplifies the true meaning of Christmas. Bless you.

Julie Musil said...

Wow. I think the sign of an amazing person is to see how they're raising their kids. It seems to me that you're an amazing person who is raising amazing kids.

Merry Christmas to you and your wonderful family.

Being Me said...

Merry Christmas Sarah, be Happy. It is a beautiful thing to see kids give of themselves.

You've done a good job with your family.

BM

From Tracie said...

Merry Christmas to you and your family. The generosity and love in your daughter's heart inspires me.

Paula said...

What a splendour in your daughter. Love and hugs across the pond, Paula

Mary said...

Hmmm, I wonder where your precious daughters learned to be so loving and giving??

Looks to me like their Mama! :)

May you all have a glorious Christmas celebrating together!

Grace, peace and love to you my friend!!

Joanne Sher said...

Merry Christmas! I hopped over here from Lynda Schab's Christmas meme when I saw you were raised Jewish. Me too :) LOVE this post too. You've got yourself another follower :)

Sharon Kirby said...

Oh Sarah - if you could only see the tears in my eyes, and the giant smile on my face!!

This was the absolute best story. I weep at the terror of your early years - the depth of the darkness that you had to experience. For that, I am sad. But oh, how the Lord has grabbed hold of you, and how he is using YOUR voice to speak HIS words. For that, I am overjoyed.

I had a period of time in my life, not nearly as horrible as yours, when I wandered from the faith I had had my whole life. When I came back, a friend of mine reminded me of these verses in Joel:

"The LORD says, 'I will give you back what you lost...and you will praise the LORD your God, who does these miracles for you.'"

Sarah, your daughters are God's "proof" that the "locusts" didn't win - love did.

Have a very Merry Christmas - and I look forward to sharing our journeys in 2011.

GOD BLESS!

Just Be Real said...

♥♥♥Merry Christmas dear Sarah♥♥♥

Wonderingsoul said...

Dear Sarah,

I've lost 2 comments now... :(

Just to say that I think your daughters are an amazing testimony to you and your story.

You deserve the best and I think that is what you have been given in them.

You give out such hope Sarah. It is beautful to read of their love for you. You are incredible.

Happy Christmas. I hpe it brings you more joy than you ever knew before.

xxx

Lily said...

Merry Christmas Sarah! Your girls are such a blessing and so lucky to have you :)

Barb said...

Hello Sarah, Christmas Blessings to you and your family.I like bears and I usually have some special ones in my bedroom, and I like to give them to my grandchildren when they are upset or unhappy,or for special achievements,or just for love.Especially JUST FOR LOVE.
Your daughters sound like wonderful young ladies.
God Bless
Barb

Just_because_today said...

this is a beautiful story. What great love you have fostered in your kids. So rewarding.

Hey, just look how far you have come, how much you can appreciate what life is giving you, what you have earned with all your work and persistence, very cool, isn't it?

Merry Christmas

Deb said...

You have wonderful daughters, and they have a terrific mom.

Merry Christmas, sweet girl.

Sweet dreams.

My Big Secret Blog :) said...

I had gooseflesh all the way inside the cast on my arm. If that doesn't say anything, I don't know what can. Merry Christmas and lots of love to you, sweetie!

artsy ant simona said...

What a beautiful story to share! It made me smile. Thanks!

Dishilicious said...

i was actually in tears when i read your post. it's so beautiful! you are truly blessed!

here's wishing you more and more beautiful moments this new year and always! xoxo