With the holidays now squarely behind us and my small family back home, life is returning to normal.
It’s been a busy few months here in Chick and Chickadee Land; the wedding, keeping our home running smoothly and the last week, which was spring break for my husband and the week where we made some awesome memories as a family.
Instead of being a letdown to get home and back to business as usual, it has been a tremendous relief; the Chickadee was sick for part of last week and then I got what she had.
I’m still recovering, but I’m older so, you know, it feels like the illness has been less miserable for me (decongestants, man. They are my friend the last few days.)
I started catching up on my reading in the last few days, and one of the things I’ve taken to reading in the last few months has been Rory Feek’s blog entitled This Life I Live.
There isn’t a person on social media who hasn’t at least gained some knowledge of the events that have rocked the Feek household in the last few years, but particularly in the last few months; watching the decline of Joey Feek and her eventual succumbing to cancer has certainly had the public’s attention.
It’s hard to put ourselves in Joey Feek’s shoes, and most people don’t want to; she was only 40 years old and left behind a devoted husband and beautiful toddler, the idea of which is heartbreaking and scary to us.
I have talked with people of late who feel horrified and sad at the circumstances.
For myself, I feel humbled.
I knew nothing of Joey or Rory Feek until she was ill and publicly fighting a battle for her life, and I am ashamed to admit that at first I was very hesitant to read about her.
It felt too nosy and voyeuristic to know so much about this woman who had never been on my radar when she was well; to have her grab my attention when she was terminally ill made me feel ghoulish to some extent, as though I was fascinated by her plight, which was never the case at all.
I realized not long ago that she triggers my deepest compassion and empathy, for she went through what would be my greatest fear; waiting until later in life to become a mother and then being separated from my precious daughter by something heinously out of my control.
Where I was humbled and continue to be so is by her grace at every turn in her plight, putting her daughter and husband first and remaining true to her faith until the bittersweet end.
Everyone has different beliefs and I am the first to admit that while I am a Christian I have a long way to go in my faith before I could ever give myself over to that kind of pure trust in my creator; watching a woman so young being called home and still having that sweet trust has made me want to strive for that kind of faith myself.
Which leads me to what I read today;
In a blog entitled “Less is More” Rory Feek addresses what we are all wondering; how is their 2 year old daughter, Indiana, doing less than a month after her mother has passed away?
In his straightforward, unassuming way he answers that question, giving the credit to Joey for stepping back in what would be her last weeks on this Earth and allowing their daughter to fall more in love with her Daddy and less in love with Joey herself.
Knowing her time was short and that if she continued to allow herself to be the focus it would make her absence more difficult for everyone, especially her very small child, she did the unthinkable.
She selflessly distanced herself in order to make the transition as easy as something that absolutely heart-wrenching could be for the people she loved and would leave behind, when that couldn’t have been easy for her.
Odds are she fought with her own desire to wring every moment of time she could with her baby for her child’s own good.
Rory Feek thanks her and gives her the credit she deserves by admitting that he wouldn’t have been able to do the same if the shoe was on the other foot, and that due to her selflessness in letting him become their daughter’s focus their baby hasn’t asked for her Mama at all.
The idea that this was Joey Feek’s intention is just another testament to the kind of person she was and the legacy she left behind; perhaps an extension of her legacy is the people who will try, when they hear her story, to obtain a little of that faith and graciousness themselves.
In these often brash and graceless times, it’s people like this that should take the attention, the faithful, the humble and the unassuming.
In a world full of Kim and Kanyes, be a Joey and Rory.
I know that’s what I want.
You can read Rory Feek’s blog entry here.
Until next time.
The Chick and her Chickadee