Remembering Ruthie my heavy heart gives way to grace.

In the little bedroom town of Saint Francisville we have experienced a loss, a great loss actually.  Someone I did not have the honor of meeting has died, Wednesday I attended her wake at the Methodist Church. We stood outside in a line that twisted out the door, down the street and around the corner and as we waited my anxiety intensified.  While standing my gaze shifted from my sweet southern husband who was holding a flower umbrella over my head to the line of mourners and my mind was distracted.  It raced with thoughts of a women I never meet but feel I am a better person for having ‘sharred’ in her journey.  You see, she came into my life as a result of her cancer diagnosis not because I am a nurse, but through a blog chronicling her progress that her brother Rod Dreher was writing called belief.net  and currently through his writing at The American Conservative.

This past week Ruthie died, at home from what they think was a pulmonary embolism.  She leaves a husband, three daughters, mother, father, brother, friends and a community to ponder how life will go on with out her physical presence and my mind drifts to when I was in University and the day we buried my step-dad in 1987. I read somewhere I think it was on Proverbs 31 Ministry and I am kicking myself for not writing down then but it went something like this: ‘Death is not something we get over as most people think. Death is something we learn to move around as we develop a new normal with out our loved one.’

Borrowed from Ruthie's friend Deanna Gresham's FB page. The photo was taken on the day of Ruthie's funeral. Can you see the cross?

I have been shedding a lot of tears over the last week, some for Ruthie and some for other losses that have touched my life .  Today, again I found comfort and inspiration in Ruthie’s big brothers posting so I am sharing a snippet with you:

     “Nevertheless, the legacy of Ruthie’s witness brings to mind these words of St. Therese of Lisieux, who became one of the greatest saints of living simply and purely for Christ and others. This benediction of the Little Flower’s could have been written by Ruthie, of her own experience:

May today there be peace within. 
May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. 
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith. 
May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. 
May you be content knowing you are a child of God. 
Let this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. 
It is there for each and every one of us.

Rod Dreher

In Ruthie’s memory, Melody

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About Lyme Lives EveryWhere

Angola Inmate Hospice volunteers taught me to trust God and the power of forgiveness. I have always been fascinated by how people 'discover' their gifts/callings. As a coping mechanism for a complicated home life; I liked to run outdoors regardless the weather. After University my running was curtailed due to mystery ailments that would flare up on-and-off for decades. Intuitively, I have been soaking in epsom salt baths ever since I became a runner. Perhaps that is what kept my immune system functioning for so long. In 2005, my mystery ailments returned. After a decade of suffering and symptom flare ups, I was told by health care practitioners to learn to live with what was ailing me. In 2013, my immune system shut down and resulted in a health crisis; ultimately saving my life. Tired of being sick and tired, by divine intervention I found an amazing advocate in Dr. Amanda Lea; an osteopathic physician in Zachary Louisiana. Two days before I found her, a friend put me on her church prayer list as I searched for answers. Dr. Lea was setting up a new practice and worked me in the day after the prayer chain started. She listened to my health history uninterrupted for 45 minutes. After my diagnosis, I went to see a Lyme experienced MD, the head of infectious disease at a large hospital in New Orleans. She opened the office door, walked in and proclaimed that "Lyme disease does not exist in Louisiana". That day my passion for Lyme awareness, education and advocacy was revealed to me.
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4 Responses to Remembering Ruthie my heavy heart gives way to grace.

  1. Beautiful Melody. I am praying for you.

  2. Sylvia says:

    In the sky: I see a cross… and a pink ribbon!

    • Southernsnow says:

      Sylvia, I did not see the pink ribbon, at first I only saw the pink color but I sorta see it now. Thanks for taking a look around, looking at clouds takes me back to laying on a hill in Calgary and searching the clouds for shapes and forms.
      Melody

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