I’m going to a visitation today for a 12 year old girl; funeral tomorrow. She passed away on Christmas morning. I was really sad when I got the news; not really in the celebratory mood that is common and expected on Christmas – celebrating the birth of Jesus, opening presents, spending time with family. Over the past 5 days I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about KiKi and the legacy she left behind in the short time that she was with us.
My daughter Sara went to school with KiKi on and off over the past 8 years or so. KiKi never spoke. She never walked. I don’t know the family too well, but I was blessed to have known KiKi though school activities, special needs events, etc. To have met KiKi was to never forget her: mop of blonde curls, bright blue eyes that lit up when you spoke to her, a smile that would melt away any lousy mood you might be in. To see that was to fall in love. To see that was to know that God had blessed her.
I know that I am by far not the only one touched by KiKi. Through the wonders of Facebook, I have had the privilege of reading so many messages of love towards this girl….”those who don’t speak express the most profound wisdom”, “you could not be around her without smiling yourself”, “those sparkling eyes – I will never forget”. In her obituary, her family wrote, “She was but a twinkle in God’s eye when He gave her a special mission. It was to teach the people she met about unconditional love, compassion and acceptance. He knew that she would need a large and loving family to do that. Without ever uttering a word and only a smile and the gleam in her eye, Kiki completed her mission on Christmas morning ….”.
Loss is hard. Loss of a child is devastating. To have seen the way KiKi’s parents loved her; to have witnessed the joy she brought to everyone she met. There is no doubt in my mind that God did have a mission for KiKi; no doubt that she completed her mission here on earth and Jesus wanted her home with Him. As KiKi’s mom wrote in her final message to friends and family on Christmas morning, “As we celebrate Jesus’ birthday today on earth, KiKi is celebrating her angel birthday in heaven with Him on His special day. Do not mourn her death but rejoice and celebrate her new life without pain. She is running and dancing, talking and singing, doing all the things she wanted to do, in Heaven.”
Twelve short years and such a legacy. I pray that I might make just a fraction of a difference in the lives I touch as KiKi did in the short time we were blessed to have her with us.