The safe thing would be to bow out of this prompt and go with the kids’ day prompt: your name.

But this week I have felt sadness on many counts, most importantly on account of Wyatt.

I’ve never met Wyatt. In fact I’ve only met his mother a couple of times, but we are friends on Facebook and longtime sisters of Segullah.

Wyatt has bravely been battling cancer this past year. I honestly don’t recall how many months it’s been since Wyatt’s diagnosis. Or if he is 9 or 10 years old. But I do know he is beloved by so many. I know he is an avid sports fan. And always orders the medium chicken enchilada chili from Zupas, no mix-ins. And he helped his schoolmates with math and made them laugh and is kind. And one thing that is forever engraved upon my heart is Wyatt’s smile.

Over the past while, and even on my hardest days, I’ve seen Wyatt beaming at me through Facebook, Instagram, and Caringbridge updates. Wyatt’s sweet smile braves chemo, hospitalization, nausea, and losing his hair. His smile fills me with warmth, courage, and gratitude for his example of a perfect brightness of hope. For even when things are the worst, Wyatt reassures everyone whose hearts are breaking around him that he will be ok. And that everything will be ok. And I believe him.

I’ve been praying for Wyatt for a very long time and with my whole heart. I have wrestled in prayer over Wyatt. It took me a long time before I could add the words “…according to thy will” to my prayers for Wyatt.

This week, at the request of his mother, I’ve been praying that the strong drugs Wyatt has been taking to manage the terrifying symptoms of his cancer would be effective and that their also terrifying symptoms would be mitigated so Wyatt could go on his Make A Wish cruise with his family and have a lovely time. Sometimes as I prayed I felt the warmth of sunlight and ocean breeze and heard laughter. I willed it to happen. I pretty much begged. Possibly even demanded.

Yesterday I learned that Wyatt has take a sudden downturn and won’t be able to go. And I was sad. And also mad. Mad at God. But just for a moment. Because I as I read on I learned that Make a Wish offered to give Wyatt another wish, and do you know what Wyatt wished for? For the money for his cruise to be donated to the hospital where he has spent so much of his time this past year in order for them to create a play space for kids his age–tweens–because the other room is more for little kids.

Wyatt’s BIG WISH was not for himself. It was for others.

And I am completely undone–can’t see through the tears even now writing about about it–over Wyatt’s powerful example.

Wyatt’s pure act of selfless service reminds me–and I hope will always remind me–that while I believe it’s perfectly ok and healthy to feel what you feel and to be sad when you’re sad–the cure for sadness is simply to not just think of, but to do for others. To, when you’re ready, step out of yourself and your very legitimate reason for sadness and reach outward.

In doing this, Wyatt reaches upward, too. And I humbly pray the loving arms of our Savior will firmly but gently cradle sweet Wyatt and his dear mother and father and sister and brothers and grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins and friends. And angels will attend them, carrying and lifting them through their sadness, surrounding them in peace, love, and light.jesus


[Day 119 of Ann Dee Ellis’ 8-Minute Memoir.]

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