HOPE. Such a small word, but it packs a powerful punch. It's a word I cling to on a daily basis. I think it's safe to say that most of our lives are a complicated blend of tragedy and triumph, and by the grace of God, hope takes power away from the struggles, and gives power to the possibilities of growth, healing and brightness to come.
At times, HOPE is hard to find within ourselves, so we lean on God, friends and family to receive the lesson and the gift of HOPE. When I heard about The Giving Keys, I was immediately hooked and had to have one of these for myself.
Last night, I had dinner with my sweet friend Mary Ann Leach - a vibrant, beautiful, spunky young woman I met last summer at a volunteer gig. At the time, she was enthusiastically planning her upcoming wedding when those dreams were put on hold with the news that she had breast cancer. She has an incredible story of struggle, disappointment, dreams-put-on-hold, and more importantly, one of HOPE and triumph over her battle with breast cancer. Today, she's back to planning her wedding, and will be getting married to her wonderful guy in December (yea!). This last may, she totally rocked the runway and inspired the entire room at ArtBraKC (check her out below - isn't she precious?!). She is the epitome of HOPE. So today, she wears the necklace, and it's hers to pay forward when she's ready.
As we chatted last night, she shared with me a story about a good friend who has a 2-yr old daughter going through leukemia right now. In typical Mary Ann fashion, she's been an incredible source of support and love for this family as they go through this scary, stressful journey. My HOPE is that she'll pay forward the message of HOPE to this sweet baby girl and her family when the time is right. I envision that the necklace will have little bit of Mary Ann's spunk attached to it, and when she's ready to part with it, she'll pass on the gift of HOPE.