Acts of Kindness

21 Dec

When my daughter died in August of 2011, I couldn’t remember how to breathe. It would be some time before I could do much of what once came naturally to me. Now, 16 months later, there are still some things, some events and some people I just can’t do.

The events of the last week, watching freshly grieving parents, renewed elements of grief I thought had passed. I suspect it will always be so. I’ve watched closely the reactions, responses and words of others as they spoke about the families. I couldn’t pay attention when I was in it. I doubt they can, either.

There is one part of it all that has been pleasant to recall. I heard about the people moved to start expressing their condolences by paying forward acts of kindness and it made me remember the impact something my daughter said to me had on the people who came together to remember her. She so wanted to have children but could not. She talked about adoption but her health was too fragile. She turned then to Africa, to the children there that had so little. She asked her Dad and I to adopt a foster child with her. It was in the works but not yet completed when she left us.

We included in her obituary a plea from her to any that might be so inclined to foster a child in Africa as a way for her life to continue to have meaning after her death. At last count there were upwards of 45 children and families receiving assistance as a result of her simple request. And I was reminded of this. Sometimes it takes asking so little to accomplish so much. And sometimes it takes 16 months of grief to remember it. Today, finally, I remember it.

© Kim Reynolds 2012


Posted by on December 21, 2012 in Where's My Kid?


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9 responses to “Acts of Kindness

  1. indytony

    December 21, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    What a hopeful memory – a ray of light in the darkness of your grief. Thanks for sharing it.

  2. wheresmykid

    December 21, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    Thanks for taking the time to read it. Best. Kim

  3. eM

    December 21, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    Through such dark times, you’ve shown how beautifully bright remembrance can be, right alongside an unimaginable grief. Thank you for writing of her and your sorrow—how you are able and willing to do so is courageous beyond my comprehension. You’re wondrously loving and amazingly accepting.

    • wheresmykid

      December 21, 2012 at 7:28 pm

      When I started writing about Sadie, it was in order to make sure I record every possible memory I have of her. Of course, each memory leads to another, a little like digging for clams, I think. Thank you so much for reading. When you read about her, she lives on for me. And somehow that makes all this just a little more manageable. Thanks again. Kim

  4. (that's me) in the corner...

    January 17, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    I cannot imagine the grief. It is beautiful for you to write and I understand the healing that comes from that. Thank you for following my blog too. i wish you all the best. blessings<Jodeen

  5. Rachel

    January 24, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Like you, when I lost my dad I didn’t know how to breathe. Just the simple act of breathing… in and out… naturally was difficult. But what a beautiful way to remember your daughter in acknowledging her desire to adopt and encouraging others to do the same. I pray your healing continues as you take this journey.

  6. bmpiller

    February 10, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    She lives on in each and every one of those kids. What a precious daughter!

    • wheresmykid

      February 10, 2013 at 2:32 pm

      Thanks so much for this. It helps to hear it from others.


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