Hydrogen Peroxide. That brown bottle that emerged from under the sink every single time my knees were bleeding. Every time I stepped on a nail or fell from a tree. Every time I was running through the forest at full speed, only to run into a thorn bush and the many times I waded through the creek barefoot, only to see a trail of blood behind me, matching my footsteps. I would run home quick, sit on the bathroom floor and wait for my mom to fix it so I could head back outside and finish whatever game or contest was going on.
Do you all remember what would happen when the Hydrogen Peroxide was poured over the open wound? The bubbles. Didn’t it somehow make it better? I didn’t need a band-aid (although I usually got one anyway), all I needed to see was the bubbles and hear my mom say “the bubbles are there cause they are getting rid of the germs.”
Evelyn was just cleaning a cut on her boyfriend’s arm the other day and I could hear her say those very same words from the other room. I walked in to see the Hydrogen Peroxide on the table and the bubbles doing their job. It was at that moment that I felt I needed to tell her that although I was taught that and I taught her that same thing, I wasn’t entirely sure about the science behind it. We googled it, and just so you all know, there is actually science behind the bubbles and the germs. And now you know!
August 7th will be Grace’s 22nd birthday, her 5th celebration with Jesus and our 5th year trying to go about our day, as normal as possible.
Life without Grace has been hard. It has been sad and unbearable at times. We live with a steady sense of loss and sadness that lurks just under the surface, but on days like her birthday, it’s more evident, like skinned knees or torn elbows. Those are the days when peroxide is needed and the healing bubbles pour over in stories I hear about her that I didn’t know or a picture someone posts that I hadn’t seen. When I hear about the impact that she had on someone’s life and how she will never be forgotten. Or when I remember how blessed I am. With a husband that loves me and a daughter that I consider one of my very best friends.
And how blessed I am to have Grace. She doesn’t snuggle up with me anymore or hold my hand when we walk. She doesn’t stand nose to nose with me to tell me funny stories or roll her eyes when I say something that she finds ridiculous, but she reminds me to love with everything I have, every day. She also reminds me that life is short and nothing should be taken for granted.
We live just one life here, and whether I spend the next 40 years with my feet on this soil or I only have a little time left, I will make sure that my time here honors God and shows the people around me what love looks like.
Skinned knees and peroxide bubbles, not my favorite way to celebrate this coming birthday, but they remind me of the healing that has taken place these past 5 years and the eternal healing that will eventually be mine. What a day that will be…when my Jesus and my Gracie…I will see.