April 4, 2011

Life's Fragility and Resilience

You know you're blessed when you marry into a family of great women.  Twenty one years ago this May will mark the anniversary of my marriage into an amazing family.  The matriarch of this family is Weezie who celebrated her 94th birthday this February.  She is on the far left. 

In this photo we are celebrating my husband's youngest sister.  She is the beauty with the boa and zebra print cowboy hat.  We were in the midst of celebrating her wedding to a sweetheart of a man.  My husband's second sister is between Weezie and the bride.  My daughter, myself, and my mother-in-law complete the group.   

These are some of the most joyful, spirit filled women I know.  They make me laugh, at myself and the world.  Their collective wisdom is astounding and when we are all together, the room is always filled with laughter.

And yesterday the dreaded phone call came.  My husband's sister is in the hospital right now.  She is recovering from a serious illness and there are still many questions to be answered.

This picture pretty much sums up my sister in law's personality.  She is funny, carefree and always on the lookout for mischief.   I adore her sense of spontaneity and joy.  

So as we wait and pray for my sweet sister in law, another phone call comes.  My husband's grandmother has had a stroke and is also hospitalized.

As I said before, Weezie is the matriarch of the family.  She fills our imaginations with stories of the past and keeps us all focused on the important things in life.  Namely, God and family.

A twenty-four hour time span finds my family reeling from confusion, heartache and pain.  Right now my husband travels to be by her side.  And we wait and pray. 

I don't know the outcome of this time in our lives but I'm reminded of the resiliency of the violet from this winter.

 Even in its withered state it held beauty.

And within a few weeks it had rebounded and displays a new set of eager, fresh blossoms.  This is my prayer.  That my sister in law and grandmother in law will regain their strength and vitality.  That they will heal and be strong once again.  That I will once again hear their laughter.

For those of you who believe in the power of prayer, it would be such a gift to know that you join us in prayer.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

                                                                                    Philippians 4:6-7

*Thank you so much for all of your prayers and shared concern.  Both of these beautiful women appreciate your kindness and prayers and have expressed how much it means to them to know others are praying for their recovery.  There is still much uncertainty but we are grateful for the small miracles we see in their journeys.


  1. You know I am thinking of all of you right now, sweet friend. I love you guys. I count myself so incredibly lucky to know each of the women in that photo. Each one amazing in their own unique way.

    You are all in my thoughts.

  2. Cat,
    I am sending positive thoughts for you and your family. They are also very lucky to have such a special sister-in-law and grand daughter in-law in you.

  3. Cat - gentle prayers to you and your family... (thanks for sharing the photos - they are treasures)

  4. I've experienced the power of the prayers of God's people - my daughter is a living example. I pray with you that God will guide the doctors, that His healing hand will touch your loved ones and that His presence will be clearly felt.

  5. You have my prayers for your family. I'm so glad you have such cherished memories and I pray they will be a source of comfort and hope as you wait for news.

  6. Wow Cat - both ends of the emotion spectrum !

    May you truly experience that peace that only He can provide as our prayers go up and ask for healing for your loved ones.

  7. Cat, we do believe in prayer and we are praying for you and your family right now...

  8. Your family is in my prayers, Cat. What a blessing it is to be part of a loving and joyful family. I am praying for healing for these two beautiful women and for strength for all of you.

  9. Thank you all so much for your thoughtful words and prayers. You are an amazing community of friends.

  10. Dear Cat,
    some people in my family are religious some aren't but all of us believe in the power of thoughts and positive thinking. I am 100 % sure this is what made my mom recover from her serious desease last year. So this is what my family will do for your family! I am proud to be a part of it and I have yet to meet those two wonderful ladies.
    My thoughts and prayers will be with you all. Stay strong!
    Love, Sandra

  11. Cat what an incredible legacy of women you have...you are so lucky to have them in your life and I will send healing thoughts and prayers for them...we can all draw strength from each other as we need it and so I am also sending some of that strength your way for you and your family!!

    Loving thoughts, Donna

  12. Best wishes Cat! Thank you for sharing these personal images and thoughts.

  13. Dearest Catherine, love and prayers to your family members. So sorry to hear of this. What a beautiful family you belong to! xo Vickie

  14. Cat you are blessed to have such women in your life.My prayers are with your family.

  15. Crikey! MY thoughts and prayers go across the ocean to you and your family at this worrying time. I hope they both make a speedy and full recovery and you will continue to have fun times like those in your lovely photo`s.
    Follow me at HEDGELAND TALES

  16. Dear Cat, How lucky to marry into such a sweet family and I am sure you fit right in. I am so sorry for this sad news and will hold your loved ones in my heart and prayers. I do hope that you will all be together again soon filling a space with laughter. Lovely people . . . lovely photos and lovely metaphor. Take care, Carol

  17. So sorry to hear of this double whammy! What a fabulous photo of fun and family. I will say a prayer.

  18. Know that I am thinking of you and your family.

  19. Oh Cat...I'm so sorry. But your opening statement says so much "You know you are blessed when you marry into a family of amazing women." The older I get, the more important the female relationships in my live become. I love the photo of your sister in law...such happiness, mischief and love in her face. My prayers are with you and your family. One of the most influential and important women in my life was my paternal grandmother. She's been gone almost 20 years but I still miss her. God bless you and your family at this difficult time.

  20. Oh, Cat, I am so thinking of you and will offer my prayers for both these dear women in your life. My mom-in-law is the reason (secretly) that I married Greg, so I feel your pain and also understand your joy for two family members that came as a "dowry." XXOO Linda

  21. Cat, I hope they recover quickly and completely. I love your photos of them. They really convey their personality and love of life.

  22. Cat, I will say a prayer and think positive thoughts for you and your family. You seem to be such a kind and gentle person. I am so sorry you are experiencing these difficult times. Your blog post was very touching and what a wonderful tribute!

  23. What a lovely post and tribute to strong women. The best to all of you.

  24. Dear Cat, may I offer my prayers of well being and recovery to your family...
    Also, I am impressed by your statement, 'Even in its withered state it held beauty'...


Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.
"Pooh!" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
~A.A. Milne

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