breathe just breath

I heard one of my favorite songs on the radio yesterday with these simple words from the chorus, “Breathe, just breathe.” And it struck me how many different ways we can interpret such a simple phrase. My first thought was a flashback to 9 months ago when my mom suffered her sudden cardiac death. “Her breathing is very shallow,” were the words relayed to me about her condition as the ambulance took her away. Five words that rocked my world and changed my life forever.

If you google shallow breathing, which of course I have, it will talk about it being a sign of the end of life. That phrase being a description of my mom’s health is nothing I ever thought I would hear or be prepared to handle. And truth be told, I wasn’t ready for it, I felt apart instantly. My mom is the light of my world, all I have ever aspired to be. She is strong without being overpowering, beautiful without being vain, talented without being arrogant. I could go on, but you get the picture.

The night before those words were spoken to me, I promised her I would call. I didn’t. Instead, I sent her a text letting her know I would call the next day. If I had ever dreamed of going back in time, that was the moment. I wouldn’t ask for years, just a few hours to keep my word. Because now she was struggling just to breathe, something we take for granted everyday. And her being around the next day for me to call was something else I took for granted. Thankfully, God had greater plans for her. He would restore her breathing, and her recovery would be miraculous.

This absolute work of God, however, would be something that drastically changed not only her future, but my own. My book , “Cancer on Monday, Dead on Tuesday, Home by the Weekend,” was never intended to be a book. My mom was very frustrated at not being able to remember the phenomenal details of that week. So I promised to make her a journal. This time I was determined to keep my word.

And then I felt it one night, that prodding from God telling me the journal was not enough, that her story needed to be heard by the masses to inspire others with hope. Most nights, I fall asleep the instant my head hits the pillow, but that nudge kept me awake for hours with a flood of memories and details I didn’t know I had in me.

Within 4 months the book was written and besides the time commitment, it was an amazingly smooth and simple process.  However, moving into the publishing phase with all it entails, has often been overwhelming…create a Facebook page, design a website, start a blog, and the list goes on and on. For someone who does not enjoy computers, it’s a lot. For someone with two children, one being a 2-year old who is home with me all day as I try to squeeze everything possible in during his nap, it can feel impossible.

I believed from the beginning God’s hand was on this book. Yet my human nature seems to think its success is all on my shoulders, and I have to make it happen. I am so very wrong about that. Yes, I will do all I can because it’s worth it if this book touches even one other life. But I will also remember the words of a  wonderful friend who simply told me, “I believe the grander plan is already done.”

I will take her advice. “Breathe, just breathe.”


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