My heart took a step back the other night when I sat down and saw this silver tag at my seat with the name “Mariah Teller” etched onto it. I also noticed a birth and sadly, a death date, which meant this child had passed away at just 3 1/2 years old.
I was at the BYBC2015 Bloggers Conference in Salt Lake City, which was incredible btw–but I had no idea what these tags were all about.
And then I learned…
But before I share, you know that aching feeling of seeing someone suffering and not knowing what to do, what to say, and just wanting to somehow take their pain away? The awkwardness, the urge to help that goes unsatisfied? After I learned the things I learned, those very feelings came creeping over me. But if that starts to happen to you as you continue reading, just know that something awesome, amazing, and so very simple can help take those feelings away. And I’m about to share those with you too. With that, here is what I learned…
A speaker named Jesse from the Tyler Robinson Foundation spoke about losing his brother Tyler to childhood cancer. The story was crushing.
He told us that Tyler had died on March 4th and that was why Jesse was reaching out to us. They had organized the March Fo(u)rth for 1 Million Voices of Hope for Pediatric Cancer Families. How cool is that? My eyes stung with tears and I couldn’t believe the “coincidence” of the timing of his death.
I’ve had children in my makeup chairs over the years that were dying of cancer. In every case, I’ve been deeply moved by their strength and demeanor. I have to believe that those special little spirits are truly brought into this world to bless the hearts of everyone they touch. They are incredible, they teach us how to love, how to embrace every second, how to become strong, and what really matters in life.
I knew I had to share this story with you, and went to work on it right away.
Of course, my curiosity got the best of me. So, I googled Mariah’s name. I think I stopped breathing as the most beautiful pictures filled my screen. Then I found a “Prayers for Mariah” facebook page, which took me down another journey.
Something about Mariah drew me in. She came, lived her little life, and moved on. But as a total stranger, I was still powerfully moved by her legacy. A life well lived can truly change us.
I found this article about Mariah and her family. They’ve been through so much.
I reached out to Her mom Terra, and here are her words:
“she was the most incredible toddler, always happy no matter what she was going through, always worried about others. People were so drawn to her and she brought people together. She never felt sorry for herself, and even against unwinnable odds, woke up with a smile on her face. A triumphant spirit every day. She is my hero, she gives me strength.”
Here is another note Terra wrote on Mariah’s page,
“To heaven, Heavenly father please take good care of Mariah today we miss her so bad it hurts we wish there was visiting hours but then I think we would stay ..Please cuddle her for us squeeze her sing with her and play play do her cousins are really missing her too please hug her for them and give them the strength to endure today . Please tickle her for Marcus she was his favorite buddy to watch football with . Tell her I miss having her next to me cooking and just by my side where ever I went I love her so so much, please help me be strong, please hug and rub noses with her for daddy tell her he misses her mugga muggas and snuggles .she loves mashed potatoes and turkey but no cranberry sauce she will eat very little to move on to the pie. Please let her watch bubble guppies the turkey episode and sing the songs with her . We are so grateful with the time we had with her we love you sweet little Mariah you and your brother are my everything happy turkey day sweet heart . Sending my love to heaven”
The tears just keep rolling. I can’t even imagine what these kids and their families have gone through. But back to those aching feelings of wanting to somehow reach out and help…
We can do something–we can join in and March Fourth on March 4th this week…to help child cancer patients and their families.
And they’ve made it easy for us too–just pick what works for you! (The day they’ve picked is March 4th, but if you’re reading this after that date, you can still march fourth and help in any way listed below…
1. SHARE this post everywhere you can, share it today & tomorrow –we will too! Use this hashtag: #myTRFvoice
2. If you can, donate just $4 on their website
3. Leave a message of hope for kids suffering from cancer HERE
4. Attend a March Fo(u)rth event in your area if there is one) All worldwide events are listed their website
That’s it! We really can’t take away all of the pain these families endure. But we can help, and we can make a difference. I’m excited for this opportunity, it truly can touch hearts. Let us know your experiences–we believe they will be wonderful.
A little aside–I was in the middle of working on this post today when I had to run to a meeting. As I was driving, a car was in the wrong lane and swerved over. The guy behind them slammed on his horn. My first thought was, does he even know what they might be going through?
Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t, but just maybe we can stop in our moments of rage, and breathe…see other people as real, and reach out to make their lives just a little bit better. And just maybe, we will be surprised to see our lives become better as well.
And I don’t know why I’m feeling compelled to share this link… Recovery From Grief But if you know anyone suffering from grief, recovery is essential and better yet, it’s attainable, and can ultimately empower us. Here is a wonderful book that can help make that process easier for anyone that you love.
That’s it! Thanks for being so amazing and we hope we get to see some of you at our local venues as we MARCH Fourth for so many kids and their families.