Hope, maggieleeforgood, motherhood, Uncategorized

Treasure the Perfect Imperfection This Mother’s Day

I pray for a Teflon heart on major holidays but on this day I ask for a double coating of it. I know many of you as well have gotten very proficient in quickly switching channels when the Mother’s Day commercials appear. Thankfully I still have my Mother but nearly six years ago I lost the twelve-year-old who first made me one.

The Mother’s Day of 2009 was a disaster including vitriolic fights over who would hold the breakfast tray, spilled coffee and dog vomit. And that was all before 7:30 a.m. Then came church which resulted in another squabble when I allowed our fourth-grader, Jack, to lean on me in the pew but would not allow Maggie Lee to do the same. She wanted to sprawl out in a skirt with legs balled up toddler style. Luckily John was preaching that day we were right up front.

It was a humdinger of a day where my offspring’s negativity typically amortized over a three-month period was distilled into ONE single day. Somehow my Hallmark holiday like the fleeting melody of an ice cream truck in Summer proved beyond even my most desirous reach. Maggie Lee, sensing my disappointment (by sensing I mean hearing me say, “It is Mother’s Day! Everyone is supposed to be happy today.) illustrated a book of her favorite moments with me and it is one of my prized possessions. The disappointing day birthed an absolute treasure.

So let’s pinky-swear we’ll enjoy every unscripted moment today. The sibling throw-downs and the spilled coffee. You don’t have to enjoy the dog vomit, just make someone else clean it up. You may be shouldering the burden of parenthood by yourself or discouraged about the child which has yet to come. You may be missing your beloved mother or grandmother. With all we could grieve let us look around at what we have left. And revel in the perfect imperfection of it all.

Changed for good, maggieleeforgood

MLFG Year Six

Six years of Maggie Lee for Good. And you people are still out there being fabulous on her birthday? What gives?

John and I scratch our heads when asked, “How does one start a movement in a child’s name?” Since Maggie Lee for Good was not even our idea we truly cannot answer that very well. I have learned that most parents prove excellent stewards of their loss. Countless projects, scholarships and foundations exist because people funnel their dire devastation into positive action. And usually friends and family gladly lend support.

What support we have felt. When Maggie Lee died her Caring Bridge Site had over 250,000 visits. All of that interest and good will really had no where to go when we lost her. People just truly wanted a happier ending for Maggie Lee. There is something beautiful in the human spirit that rallies to bring good out of bad and so many of you have. It’s phenomenal.

As most of you know the song, “For Good,” from Broadway’s Wicked was sung at Maggie Lee’s Celebration Service. She and John had seen Wicked the Fall before on her school’s New York trip. This year, the Wizard from Wicked (actor Tom McGowan) is actually on board with MLFG and I cried when I learned that their 11th anniversary of being on Broadway was none other that October 29th. Like so many others he has given generously of his support for the cause.

Another wonderful aspect of this year’s MLFG day next Wednesday is the MLFG Donation Celebration. Since local school and church groups commonly ask for ideas for Maggie Lee for Good Day, we finally just created some. Four local charities will be highlighted along with Maggie Lee’s Closet. The party will be on October 29th from four to six p.m. Groups will bring in their precious donations to thankful agencies and we’ll all celebrate. Wouldn’t Maggie Lee love other people get great presents on her birthday?

Wicked's Wizard Tom McGowan
Wicked’s Wizard Tom McGowan