Ashley's Story

She will leave fingerprints all over your heart


For Ashley

We watched Allie play in the final game of her very first volleyball season tonight. The girls won with impressive play. It was so fun. Dave and I love watching the kids play ball. It doesn't matter what type they are playing, we still love it. Allie was awesome and I was so proud to be her mom. Not just proud to be the mom of an amazing athlete, but proud to be the mom of an amazing kid. She is a blessing.

I tucked Al in bed tonight and as I lay next to her in that big bed of hers I told her how awesome she was. She smiled at me and said, "Its for Ashley." With that said my heart melted. I nodded and told her how much it blessed me to know that she gives it her all, no matter what sport she's playing, because she realizes how blessed she is to have a body that works.

As we chatted she asked me if I remembered when Ash was born and had her first surgery what she was worried about. I didn't remember the conversation until she reminded me of it. At that time Allie was into competitive cheer leading. When my 7 year old saw the incision across Ashley's tummy she was worried that Ashley would never be able to wear a cheer uniform. I told her Ash would wear one someday and she would be the only one tumbling across the floor wearing a tiny backpack. We giggled at the thought of how cute she would be when that day came. Tonight Al said, "Mom, she doesn't ever have to wear a cheer leading uniform with a backpack. Its not important to me anymore. I would be happy just to see her walk across the driveway with her backpack on." Tears formed in my eyes as she said, "All I care about is her living. Doesn't matter to me what she can and can't do. I just want to see her with her backpack. Thats all."

When I see Blake and Allie playing in their games I often find myself longing for Ash to have the ability to do the same. We talk often about how blessed they are of God to have what they have. Fully functioning minds and bodies that can perform the way they want them to. We no longer take it for granted. Its funny how my perspective has changed in the recent weeks. Just Saturday I watched 4 and 5 year old little girls run across the soccer fields in their pink and black uniforms and I found myself saying to myself, "I don't care if she ever plays soccer, I just hope she makes it till Christmas." Its the honest truth. Those were my thoughts as Allie jumped out of the car and made her way across the fields. As Dave and I sat across from each other that night at dinner I shared that with him and he had no words to say. Just tears forming in the corners of his eyes. I no longer want soccer games, I just want tomorrows.

Basketball season starts tomorrow. My Allie will be trying out this week. She's hoping to make the team. Not so much for her mom, not even for just herself, but more for her baby sister who will never have the opportunity to try out. She's playing ball with a bigger purpose on her mind and on her heart. She's playing for two. Giving it her all because she loves a little girl who doesn't have the opportunity to do the same.

I love my girls. Love them both with all my heart. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to be here during this volleyball season and share the experience with my 7th grader. I'm holding my breath that God has a basketball season in store for us to share too before we leave home again.


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