As a child, the word
was synonymous for me
with reading books.
Lots and lots of books.
Filling my book bag at the
library with a variety of adventures
truly made my little spirit soar.
It still does.
I joined a book club ten years
ago, and though our membership
has changed through the years,
that passion for connecting over
a good story at our monthly
meeting ~ usually, lunch ~
A few of our selections have been
made into movies, and we've
enjoyed watching them, together.
Last week The Club went to
see The Fault in Our Stars,
based on the novel we'd read
and loved last year.
On the drive home, we reflected
on this film and others before it,
which told stories of young people
faced with a terminal illness.
Our younger selves had cried
through Terms of Endearment,
just as our mothers had years
earlier watching Love Story,
imagining ourselves as one
of those young patients.
This time, our emotions aligned
more closely with the parents
of the sick characters as they
witnessed the unimaginable
fight of their children's lives.
Sadly, that indefinable pain has
been the reality for the mother
of a shining light named
Summer White Lynch, who died
last week at the age of 41.
Summer, wife and mother to two
little boys, valiantly fought breast
cancer twice over several years.
Through it all, Princess Crazy, as
she called herself, was determined
to truly live, squeezing out every
bit of joy each day could hold.
And, she did.
|With her mom ♥|
Although I never met Summer
personally, I knew her through my
pseudo little sister, Fiona, who shared
inspiring tales of her friend's bright
personality and life with cancer.
As Summer's journey was nearing its
end, mom and daughter collaborated
on a campaign to spread Summer's
joie de vivre and love of kindness,
through little cards encouraging
Random Acts of Kindness (RAOK),
either in Summer's honor or for
someone else who has had cancer.
Imagine that kind of grace.
Keep Calm and Summer On
has grown from a spark to a blaze
and sweet stories of goodness
are reaching Summer's family from
around the globe via Jan's email,
printed on the back of the cards.
She hopes the cards will continue
an endless chain
of Summer-inspired kindnesses.
If you'd like to be part of the
movement, you can print out your
own cards, here, as I did, and
use them generously : )
While I've loved books since I was
a tiny girl, no hero or princess or
warrior in fictional tales can come
close to capturing my own heart
and imagination as the genuine
stories of people like Summer.
I just wish there weren't
PS: A huge thank you to those
who supported my efforts in the
American Cancer Society's Relay
for Life. Your donations and dear
words of encouragement will always
be written in my own story.
Scene from The Fault in Our Stars - Google
Pictures of Summer - Via Facebook
All others - my own