Day 134: lovemore monday: show up for what you love

14 May

Today I received a photo via email.
It is a photo of my mother, my father and me when I was a college freshman in the throws of saying my last goodbye to my parents, right before they drove away from campus.

This photo looks like any freshman family saying goodbye.
Parents about to become empty-nesters. Student about to enter the hallowed halls of higher learning. Roommates about to turn into life-long friends. Terrible 90’s permed hair about to go away.

What you don’t know from this photo is that my mother and I had just finished months of cancer treatment.

What I didn’t know at the time was that my mother had been given less than a 20% chance to live one year.

What kept her alive was her desire to see me graduate from high school.
And, her desire to be present for this very hug, on this very day, that was captured on film (yes, film — 20 years ago it was film! Thank you Steve Reed!).

It was my mother’s goal.
It was her vision.
She swore to me that it was what kept her alive, long past the doctor’s predictions.

I had no idea.
I learned this information five years later  — while Mama Sling was reading her diary to me.  I flew home from my first big-girl-real-world-job to be with my mother while she  recovered from reconstructive breast surgery. In the days we spent together, me tending to her needs in one of life’s many turnabouts, she read to me from her diary.

That’s how I found out her reason to live through a grim and incomprehensible prognosis —  to see me graduate from high school.

I found this out after I had graduated from high school and two colleges.  She attended THREE graduation ceremonies with me in cap and gown.  And, it was after all three, five years later, that she told me she only had a 20% chance to live one year.

I think of this story often.
Because I know, deep inside my heart, even in times of doubt, that what others say does not go.  It is not law.  It’s just a best guess.

People beat the odds everyday.

They live longer, run faster, throw harder, perform better.

As long as they have something to look forward to.
Something to be there for.
Someone or something to love.

So, on this LOVEMORE MONDAY, I just want to say this:
Here’s to showing up for what you love.

And, that’s why:
I. Love. It.

12 Responses to “Day 134: lovemore monday: show up for what you love”

  1. arhenning May 15, 2012 at 3:25 AM #

    Beautiful. Profound. True. Show up for what you love. Beat the odds. What else is there in life?

    • Jamie May 15, 2012 at 5:34 AM #

      Yes, what else is there! I love that. Thank you 😉

  2. Debbie Phillips May 15, 2012 at 4:10 AM #

    Heart-achingly beautiful, Jamie. I know I say this often…but…this may be my favorite post yet!

    • Jamie May 15, 2012 at 5:37 AM #

      Thank you, dear Debbie! Means so much to me. HUG.

  3. Ellen Wingard May 15, 2012 at 4:20 AM #

    So exquisitely tender dear J’aime, and you show up for what you love everyday and your Mom’s spirit is so beautiful in you. xoxox

    • Jamie May 15, 2012 at 5:38 AM #

      Thank you dear Ellen!

  4. Krist Zimmerman May 15, 2012 at 5:04 AM #

    A lovely memory and thank you for sharing. It makes me think of how to continue improving my impact on the lives of those I love.

    • Jamie May 15, 2012 at 5:38 AM #

      Oh, Krist, thank YOU! Here’s to all of us showing up. 😉

  5. Allison May 15, 2012 at 10:37 PM #


    Sometimes I read about your trips and get a little jealous, I can’t travel when and where I want right now. As I learn more of your health struggles and your Mom’s and how young you were, I am glad for you that you have learned from these experiences and are now creating something betterfor you. Well done!

    Allison Brown

    • Jamie May 16, 2012 at 6:25 AM #

      Thank you Allison, and thank you for being HERE with me! Here’s to your dreams too!

  6. Jill Merriam May 16, 2012 at 7:10 PM #

    Jamie, Jamie, Jamie, beautiful Jamie. That was poetic and beautiful and heart warming and tear jerking all at once. Thank you for sharing something so sacred. I LOVED trading it! xoxo. Jill

    • Jamie May 16, 2012 at 7:37 PM #

      Thank you Jill! Miss you much my dear.

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