I’ve had a lot of encouragement in the last two weeks. I have felt enormous grace and support and I’m pretty sure I’ve felt Mary’s touch a time or two.

But today takes the cake.

Look what the FedEx man brought me:

They’re not from my husband.  They’re not from my parents.  They’re not from an admirer.

Well, maybe they are.

My sister-in-law (giving my brother-in-law credit, though I’m pretty sure she was the mastermind in this) wrote me a little love note and said, “We don’t tell you enough how much we love you.”


She has no idea how many layers of meaning this has for me, especially on a day when I’ve been struggling to embrace my vocation, say “Yes” as Mary did, let go of the need to figure out how I’ll get a laundry list of things done.  She doesn’t know about the retreat I’m planning, the writing I have to get done, or the work that keeps getting shoved back as another little fire crops up throughout the day.

She doesn’t know that roses symbolize Mary, that this feels (and smells) for all the world like a big, encouraging hug from heaven.

But she wouldn’t mind, if she did know.

In fact, I think it might make her smile.

Thanks, “Aunt Bug,” for making my day.  Now I’m off to explain to my five-year-old why I’m not being selfish to insist that they stay where I can see them, smell them, and enjoy them.