What is a Miracle?

Marika Warden as a young on a moonlit beach, photoshopped by Robin Botie of Ithaca, New YorkWhat’s a miracle anyway?
For the past two weeks I’ve been glued to the TV wishing for a miracle for the families of Flight 370. In truth, I’ve been waiting for some miracle or another for most of my life.

This week I came to a realization: the miracle is that we live.
Once born, every last one of us dies. But in between being born and dying we get a gift.
For some it is a sweet comfortable time; some end up on a rocky ride. Our lives are lived in peace, in wars; in mindfulness, in oblivion; in isolation, in the midst of masses. We live in beauty and grace; we live in misery and squalor. If we’re lucky we live through good and bad and everything in between.

Some lives last a century and some are very brief. That we got here at all is the miracle. We’re all leaving town; just some of us have an earlier flight.

I need to celebrate the miracle.
We live. I live. And as I live, I will always remember those who were here with me, especially the ones I loved and was lucky enough to share time with. I am grateful for them, for dazzling days with friends, for the sun and the moon, for the privileges I have known, for the wind that makes me shiver and even for oceans that eat up airplanes and hope. For every lesson in life, both cruel and compassionate, and for every day of my time here, I feel blessed.

So how do I live when my heart’s been broken? How do I live after losing my daughter?
It’s a miracle.

What is a miracle to you?

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13 thoughts on “What is a Miracle?

  1. Sandy Vehrencamp

    Beautiful thought. Some lives are just rather short. My daughter wrote in her journal that she would rather lead an intense short life than a long boring one. That’s what she got. We were warned by some doctors that people with her problem often led short lives. She fried her brain with chemicals and wrecked her body, but she had a lot of fun in the process.

    Reply
    1. Robin Botie Post author

      Yeah, both our daughters had fast-burning fuses. I kinda prefer the slow burn, balancing the blasts of raucous joy with rigorous regard for my health. You got warned? Yow. Living with that warning must have been – heck! – I wonder if they warned HER? Intense versus boring? You were living in completely different worlds. Kinda like when the doctors warned me that any little germ could end my immune-system-deprived daughter’s life and I got to watch her partying in grunge like she was making up for all time. Yeesh! The things they put us through. The things we learned. The things we love about them anyway. Sandy, we DO need to have more fun. In their honor.

      Reply
  2. Elaine Mansfield

    Beautiful and all a miracle. I love these lines: “We’re all leaving town; just some of us have an earlier flight.”
    Also love all your new buttons. I’m about ready to click on Notify me of follow-up comments by email since I’m already notified of new posts. Thank you, Robin.

    Reply
    1. robinbotie.com

      Sorry to be so late in responding this week, Elaine. I wonder how my new buttons are working. Isn’t that weird to be wondering about buttons? But yeah, I lived with that line, “we’re all leaving town …” for a long time in my head as I tried to sort out the meanings of life events. Cheers!

      Reply
  3. Tori de Clare

    Robin, I agree with everything you said. It is a miracle that we live. Birth is a miracle. Our bodies are programmed to create life without us consciously forming another human being. It is a miracle that we give birth to individuals, utterly unique and fascinating and beautiful. That our lives seem to follow a plan and that ‘life’ teaches us lessons almost designed specifically for our growth, is miraculous.

    I’m always astounded by the ability of human beings to adapt and change. We have immense choice in regard to our own lives. Some things occur beyond our control. We wouldn’t choose them, but we can always choose our response. We are responsible for our feelings. When we refuse to dish out blame and anger and accusation and resentment and bitterness, we can free ourselves of many torturous and troubled feelings and put ourselves in charge of our own lives and see more clearly. Bitterness clouds our perspective. It makes us deeply unhappy. I think that love is a miracle. It is the governing and most powerful force in the universe and is also almost impossible to define. What is love anyway? I have been blessed with love in my life since the day I was born. I am profoundly grateful for that love and how the love itself breeds and multiplies and the ripple effects spread out to so many. We have only two choices each hour of our lives. Gratitude or ingratitude; peace or disturbance; patience or anger; joy or misery; productivity or laziness; acceptance or resistance. We’d all choose the former if we could. The miracle is, we can! And if we’re being held captive by troubling, disabling emotions (and we all are at times) we can change. We can improve. We can always choose to be grateful. We can continue to grow for the remainder of our lives.

    Reply
    1. robinbotie.com

      Thank you, Tory. Yes, first we need to remember that we have choices in how we respond to what life sends our way. I find it too easy to forget, in bad times, that there are choices. Too often they lead to change which is scary, for me anyway. Growth and change and love shouldn’t be scary. Now you have me thinking about how to define love. Hmmmm.

      Reply
  4. Lucy Bergström

    Your broken heart opened and the revelations keep flowing. That so much clarity and wisdom can come from losing your dearest daughter, that’s a miracle.

    Reply
    1. robinbotie.com

      It’s amazing, Luce, and it’s hard to say aloud, but losing Marika resulted in making me a better person in so many ways. I keep her in my heart’s pocket all the time. Sometimes I think she is watching and managing my every move from there. Cheers!

      Reply
  5. Kirsten Wasson

    Living, yes, that is the miracle. Beautifully expressed and gorgeous, haunting image.

    Reply
    1. robinbotie.com

      Hi Kirsten. Thank you. Sorry I’m late in doing anything online this week as my son returned home. You know how it is when those sons appear on the scene. I know there must be another article from you somewhere in my gmail. So neat to keep in touch. Cheers!

      Reply
    1. robinbotie.com

      Hey Bob. You found the right buttons. Thanks. So, I think I should click the buttons too. I had to go through Google to get to site today because a pop-up window came on when I tried to go through my regular “place” you sent me to click and it wanted cookies. or something with cookies. Okay, gonna click on the 3 places under this message and let’s see what happens. Cheers!

      Reply

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