I had to write this short post today, because I am just blown away by a beautiful gift we have just received. I say a “short post” because I am one day away from my due date with our rainbow baby and so incredibly tired and a bit uncomfortable, but this truly made my week and I have to recognize this amazing person!
One thing I have learned from experiencing the grief of losing a child is that there are a lot of people who you barely know or who you’ve never even met who offer you strength, love, and the most generous acts of kindness. I could go on and on about how incredible many of our friends and family were during the most difficult times. I can never thank them enough. But what was most surprising to me was the help and support from people we barely knew or had never met. We had people brand new to my husband’s squadron who brought us meals and were unafraid of our weary, blank looks, our tears, and our inability to make small talk at the time. We received cards and gifts from near and far from friends of friends, church members from back home, or others who we had never met, but who wanted to comfort us in our time of need.
Okinawa will always hold a special place in my heart, since Luca was born there. Anyone who knows me or has read this blog or my Facebook posts knows that rainbows remind me of our angel the most. Living in such a beautiful place was a gift from God where I could feel connected to my son as I witnessed some of the most gorgeous sunsets, scenery, and most of all the rainbows that appeared to me so often shortly after Luca’s death and on other special or difficult days like Christmas and my birthday.
Now we are happy living in Kansas, but I will always miss those things about Okinawa. Recently, I saw photos that friends back in Okinawa posted or shared of a spectacular double rainbow. One picture, in particular, was shared on many pages of the full arc of that double rainbow over the ocean in an area we frequented. I tracked down the person who took the picture (never met her) and messaged her to see if I could buy a digital version of the image or order a print from her. Her name is Jen. Most of my own rainbow pictures were taken on my phone and I thought this would be such a beautiful photo to hang in our new home to remind us of our Luca and Okinawa. I didn’t mention Luca or exactly why I was interested in the photo, but nonetheless, Jen later messaged me back asking for my address and said she would like to send me a framed canvas version of the photo – no need to pay, just pay it forward to someone else.
Well, today I opened my door to find a package that I fully expected was one of the thousand things we ordered off of Amazon prime, haha! Instead, it contained the canvass of the rainbow and it is absolutely stunning! Again, I just cannot believe the kindness of this woman I have never met who gave us such a generous gift that has so much meaning to our family. Take a look!
I am so grateful for people like Jen who really prove to me over and over again that there is so much good in the world. Do you know someone who is going through a difficult time and you are not sure if you should reach out, write them a note, bring them a gift or a meal, or carry out an act of kindness? If you can, then you should. I guarantee they will appreciate it and will take great comfort in your efforts and friendship. I look forward to finding ways to pay this kind gesture forward to someone else soon. During those most difficult times, actions always speak louder than words. Thank you again, Jen! You have a gift for photography and we will cherish this photo forever! ❤