Dreams Come True
I grew up in the seventies. I feel like that statement in and of itself should paint a vivid picture of long hair and in turn, for reasons I have never understood long carpet. It was referred to as “shaggy” to feel hipster, which my family never was, but I was also desperately wanted something so cool in my house. I should mention…we never had it. Our house was covered in varying shades of brown and orange and a color green that resembled pea soup, not like the green that Mr Crayola intended. It was however covered by a showering of love, and that’s where my older brother and I grew up.
My mom had a best friend. Conveniently, her best friend was her sister, so it made family gatherings easy. Both my mom and my Aunt Carolyn spent the summers home with the kids and so often, we would pack up the station wagon and head over to the Cassidy’s for the day. The Cassidy’s lived on the “other side” of the big road, and although no one would ever confirm or deny, somewhere deep within my five-year-old brain, I knew that they were rich. They had brown faux leather chairs in their kitchen that swiveled and their house had multiple stairs. It smelled of laundry detergent and most portably Calgon, although I had never actually used that. There was this incredible hair product in the bathroom called “Tame” that helped you brush out your horribly long hair without…okay with half as much screaming. Plus, we went to hang out at their house because that had this amazing thing…full house air conditioning.
When you opened the door, you were overcome by cool tones in the house, cool air, and the coolness of the people living there, with one very small mighty exception. My cousin…Jenn. Let’s be real. She was more than a cousin…a sister She was a powerhouse. Not in a take over the world way but in a, I’m going to soak up everything life has to offer. Jen was sweet, bubbly, cute, she had freckles that were replicated on Cabbage Patch Dolls. She was charming…a skill I still struggle to pull off, and she was my best friend too. We would spend summers soaking up that air conditioned coolness, running the Slip and Slide down the metal backyard slide, playing kickball where if you hit the buzzing electric wire you were automatically out, planning our lives, and dreaming about what we wanted in our future. At the age of 6 Jenn had corporate aspirations, in not being a “stay at home mom” but working in an office somewhere. Maybe even being a secretary. She was young and going places. Although slightly older, I looked up to her. She saw the world full of sunshine and grace.
Above all, that freckled face would start and end every “dream” scenario with, I’m going to have a husband and take care of my kids. I mean yes, she may have to pull a “9-5” movie scenario and sneak rat poison into her boss’ coffee, but she would be going home to her husband and children. That was her dream.
While there are so many memories of garage sales with lemonade stands, countless hours at the pool, Halloween nights when I was terrified and she was well…3 houses ahead of me, cookouts, broken mayonnaise jars, and so many other things. The dream, no matter how it evolved it always included a husband and children.
Today as we mourn the unexplainable tragic death of Jenn, I know that the freckled face little girl had her dreams come true. She met a man that fell hopelessly in love with her, married her and they had two baby boys. While I could tell so many stories, I don’t want to take away that Jenn’s husband Daren made her dreams come true.
Today as we mourn her ended life here, we celebrate where she is in this moment. We celebrate her amazing opportunity to be face to face with Jesus, and we know that God’s grace is sufficient. While we pray for all things we cannot express in words, we know that God is working in it.
So today I pray for her heartbroken parents, I pray for Daren, and I pray for her children, and I thank God that my sister’s dream come true.