This girl. This girl right here. She is something so special… I know I talk about her a lot, but the time has come for me to sit and really spill the beans on how important she is to me and my spiritual growth. She’s anything but ordinary. She’s special in the most amazing ways.
Cecilia is six years old, but has a soul as old as time. Tonight before bed she had a moment. Well, it was more than a moment. It was about an hour of what started out feeling like torture. When I told Ceci it was time for bed she had a complete meltdown. Screaming, crying, hitting, throwing toys. The whole nine yards… But then she started screaming something that really bothered me. “I’m stupid. I’m just so stupid.” Over and over and over. I had no idea where it was coming from or why she was saying it. Luckily, I was able to gather an extraordinary amount of patience, and continuously responded to her with love. “What are you talking about? You’re so smart. And amazing. And beautiful. And wonderful. And kind. And loving… You’re perfect.” But she just kept repeating that she was stupid. So I just kept repeating all that I think is so wonderful about her.
Then she fell apart. “Mommy, it’s just so hard being human. I try so hard, but sometimes I hurt people. And then when they get hurt, it hurts me. Or other people do whatever they want to, and if I don’t like it, that can hurt me too. I can’t hold it in anymore. It’s just too hard.” Then she sobbed. I carried her up to bed, where she cried herself to sleep as I hugged her.
Big sigh… She’s six. Take a second and think about how it must feel to be sitting inside her heart. She understands and can express things most people lying on their deathbeds can just barely grasp. And she’s my little girl.
When Ceci was about two she went to Target with her aunt, Allison. As they walked down an aisle, Ceci turned to her auntie and exclaimed, “Grampy’s here!” Allison, knowing Ceci had had experiences like this before asked, “Oh yeah? Where is he?” Ceci pointed to the top of a display and answered, “There! By the pumpkin… He’s eating a cookie. He says he can eat now. His belly doesn’t hurt anymore.” My dad died of stomach cancer.
A couple of years later, when I was pregnant with Ryan, one night I sat with Ceci in her bed and read her a few stories before it was time to go to sleep. After we finished reading, we chatted for a bit. As our conversation neared its end, I looked at her and said something I’ve said countless times, “Ceci, I’m so glad that God gave me you.” Her response was something she hadn’t said before. “Mommy, God didn’t give me to you. I picked you.” Then she went on to explain how her soul thought Mike and I would be the perfect parents for her, and how she chose us. Then out of nowhere, she turned to me and said, “You know, Grampy has wings that sparkle. It’s like they’re covered in glitter.” So of course I asked, “How do you know that?” Her response made me cry. “He brought me to you. When I was born, he flew me down to you. And there were angels all around… And then I was here…” Instantly tears came pouring out of my eyes. She never ceases to amaze me.
Being a parent is never easy. But I think it’s probably more important for us parents to remember that being a child is never easy either. Ceci has this amazing ability to express herself. She remembers the love of God… or heaven… or wherever it is that we come from. She knows. And being away from that type of love is hard for her. It’s hard for all of us. But she’s consciously aware of it. And she can verbally express it. A true angel living in a human body.
Of course, all of us are angels living in human bodies, right? Or at least that’s what I choose to believe. We all have our own lessons, challenges, and experiences… Probably that we chose to face before we came here. But we’re all angels. Every single one of us. I think we could stand to learn a lot by listening to our children. By showing them patience, and understanding, and kindness. I mean, of course sometimes that feels impossible, and we respond in ways that are only human, right? And that’s okay… Because we are human. But those moments… The really hard ones… When our little loves are completely incapable of handling life and all the shit that it throws at them… In those moments, what they need is love. Right? Because really, isn’t that all that they are? Little vessels of love… Sent from heaven, to help us learn to love more fully. And unconditionally.
You know, Ceci really is no different than any other child. She’s not any more or less special than any other little angel sent here from heaven. All that she is able to express are the same things that all children feel. I’m so blessed that she is able to articulate what’s happening inside of her. That she can tell us what’s going on, so that Mike and I can help her. We certainly have our work cut out for us with this one. And it doesn’t promise to be easy. But the rewards are well worth it. She teaches us so much. And when I envision Cecilia’s future, I see something so bright. I see her moving mountains. And gazing at stars. Dreaming big and fearlessly pursuing that which brings her joy. She’s such a gift. And I’m so glad she chose me.
Cecilia and the Satellite~Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness
Photo Credit: Jamison Wexler