Friday, January 11, 2008

Happy Birthday Maria! - January 11, 2008


Happy Birthday sweet Maria,

On your special day I think of you with so much love and gratitude in my heart.

You came into this world so quietly. It struck me that you barely even cried when you were born. I thought something must be wrong, but then you looked at me wide-awake and so peacefully. You had that quiet peace about you right from the very beginning. Maybe because you knew I was not well and did not want to cause a fuss. You always thought of me first. They rushed me off to the O.R. and you stayed very quietly with your Daddy who developed a special place in his heart for you right from that very moment.

You always radiated love Maria. Before you became sick there was a timid and sweet, happy-go-lucky innocence about you. You were excited about everything and genuinely loved life. You were quite the practical joker, yet you were gentle, kind and thoughtful. After you became sick your wisdom grew and much of your happy innocence was taken away from you. I hated to see this. Yet with all you had to endure the love that you radiated to others seemed to grow stronger and stronger. In your most private, difficult and painful moments you reached out to me not to be comforted, but to comfort! Though I kept my face strong and smiling for you, you saw beyond it and you did not want me to worry. I ached deeply. I could not help you. I could not save your life. You put your hand on my cheek and told me that you loved me. In your pain you did not think of yourself. You never wanted me to suffer but you suffered so much. It occurred to me that until you, I never really grasped the meaning of true love. You showed me love in its rawest form. Pure love. Nothing attached to it. A love like that can never be conquered by death and will live forever. You loved me like Christ would. Because of that I am able to understand the beginning of the depths of the love Christ must have for us. Through you I received a glimpse of Christ’s pain and suffering but also His unconditional love. I want to thank you Maria! I see now what I can’t imagine ever having not seen! It is so clear to me that at the end of your life Christ took hold of you and you became one with Him. Just as Father Tim said, He consumed your soul, Maria, and I was blessed to be a witness.

Hold onto me Maria. Don’t let me slip and fall. I want to get to where you are and I know that my life must change. There is a lot of work to do and I am already almost 39. Only through your example have I been able to understand the urgency of how important it is to change my life and live it for Christ. Now I see that this life is not about me, but what I can do for others. It is entirely about LOVE. God has taught me that valuable lesson through you. I pray that I never lose site of the meaning. That I don’t ever fail to remember the lessons I have learned. One day I know God will ask me “What have you done with what you have been given?” I long to hear Him say the words that I know you have already heard: “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

For your birthday I can not give you any greater gift than what you have already been given--the gift of eternal life. Your life on earth has ended, but your mission, I believe, has just begun. I am here for you Maria, to help you in any way I can. I pray others will too.

Your Daddy, Eddie, Aidan, Blake and I love you and miss you so much Maria. You will always be our glue. We think of you every day. We are so proud of you. We know you will enjoy your first birthday in Heaven with all of the other beautiful children who have walked in your shoes. No more pain. No more suffering. Only love.
Love,
Mom and Dad

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

May God bless you and hold you close. You are in my prayers!
Laurann Collins

Anonymous said...

Megan and Ed,
I think of your family EVERY day and pray for comfort and peace for you. I visit Maria's site everyday and smile at her beautiful face!
Your always in our prayers!
Kelly Harris

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful birthday message to your lovely daughter. I still remember Maria and her family at every Mass I attend. You are always in my prayers! -Emily

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Maria! I miss you!

Anonymous said...

Maria,
Unfortunately I never had a chance to meet you. Your mom and dad and everyone we meet that knew of you spoke nothing but great amazing things about you. You are an amazing person. You battled your illness with such courage and unwavering faith, and although you were the one suffering, you were so selfless. You would rather take the pain than wish it on anyone else. What an amazing gift you had at just 7 years old. Whenever I look at your beautiful pictures, I get an ache in my heart for what you had to endure. I ache for your parents and family every day, as I can't imagine how hard it has to be living in this world without you here with them..but then I remember where you are now, and how much better you are feeling, and how at peace you finally are, and I start to feel a little better.
Maria, you definitely left your mark here on earth. So many people will never look at life the same because they were lucky enough to know you or your story. I know you are serving a much bigger purpose in heaven, and I know you are doing a fine job up there.
Take care of your family, as I know you already are. Your mom feels your presence all the time, and she tells me what good care you take of her, and your dad and brothers.
Happy Birthday Maria. I never knew you but I sure feel like I did.
Maybe one day I will be lucky enough to finally meet you.
Love,
Meg

Grandma said...

Happy Birthday to our beautiful Maria who is spending her first birthday in heaven. You would have been eight years old today if you were here to celebrate the day with us on earth.
I know you were present in church today with all of your family and your grandparents and your schoolmates.
As Father Tim said today, you were just like the sunflower. Always looking towards the Son and leaving your sunshine for all of us.
Please ask Jesus to bless us all so we may one day join you in heaven and never be sad again.
Love,
Grandma Mac

Anonymous said...

May God continue to comfort you and bless you all. I pray for your family every day.

Anonymous said...

Dear Megan and Ed,

This post brought tears to my eyes. What a wonderful thing to take away from this sadness...to see Christ's love reflected in your daughter through her suffering. How unbelievably unselfish and precious that Maria would comfort you during her painful times. I just sobbed quietly Megan when I read how she touched your cheek. I have 3 little girls myself and can't imagine how difficult this all was.

I've thought about you all so many times these last few months. Maria really has a little place in my heart and I will never forget her story of courage and love. She and Sophie were definitely special. What a beautiful girl you were blessed with! I was so happy to see an update since I check regulary to see how you're all holding up. May God continue to give you comfort and peace knowing that Maria is happy and carefree in heaven. God bless you all!

Molly Kofchur

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Beautiful Maria!
We miss you so very much! We miss your smiling face and your silly jokes. We know the reason there was rain yesterday for your birthday... "you must have been having a pool party for your birthday and splashing the water over to us." We were just wondering when it would start to snow birthday cake?!
Two boys who remember you often and will never forget you!

Anonymous said...

Dear Maria,
Happy Birthday! I never thought my heart could become so attached to someone I never met, but from the smiles and pictures I've seen of you I can see why you have become God's little sunflower. My best goes out to your Mom and Dad...little Brothers too.

Trucker

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing tender thoughts and memories of the parts of Maria that only you knew. Please know that Maria's story is not forgotten. And yes, the world is a better place because of her and because of YOU, her parents. You who have shared her story and your story with all of us. So that we may see the glory of God at work here on earth.
Megan and Ed I pray for you each day. That God will grant you the strength to endure just one more day....closer to your reuniting with Maria. It will be a long road to seeing your beautiful child again, but oh the glory when you do. What a wonderful day that will be. She will have so much to tell you!
And so I thank you. Thank you for sharing Maria with us so that we can be a part of God's plan for her. So that we may radiate Maria's light on to others through ourselves.
Happy Birthday Maria. You are loved by so many who never touched your hand. And you have the most amazing parents I have ever known. They have taught me much through your journey as well.
You are loved and admired McNamaras. Today and everyday from here on.
God Bless

Gina said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you today and every day. I have learned so much from Maria and her loving family. May God continue to bless you.
Gina R.

Anonymous said...

Dear Maria, Happy birthday, precious sunflower! You know Maria, every time I see a sunflower, I see your face. Your face and name is the first thing I think about when I look at that beautiful flower. How it radiates sunshine! Your mommy's beautiful update about you was just stunning and filled with love! Your mommy and daddy and your brothers miss you so much. I visit your grave every month just to come and say hello. You are and always will be, a special little sweetheart that holds a very special place in my heart. I pray for you and for your family every day when I say my prayers. I do wish you were here, back on earth with us. How selfish of me! You have seen God, and the sights you have experienced, the angels you have traveled with, the Choruses you have been able to sing with, and most of all, the hearts you have touched with your love, are just indescribable, aren't they? I'll bet your Christmas in Heaven was so glorious and gorgeous! And now, your 1st birthday in God's Heavenly Garden--wow! We love you Maria. Never forget that. Take good care of mom and dad; you know how us parents worry about our children! Thank mom again for her awesome update. I think we all have been waiting for one. Such beautiful words from a mother's heart and soul! Love, Debbie Goodfellow

Anonymous said...

Wow, thank you for sharing that letter to Maria. You have no idea how it blessed me to see the truth of God pour out of your heart. Yes, we must all change our lives so we can have eternal salvation and you are like me, I want to do everything to be sure I have it - not just a well, I'm pretty good and I haven't killed anyone. This journey that we are on has caused so much change in my life and I hunger to learn His Word more and become more Christ-like. You seem to be a very solid Christian and your hunger to become moreso is a beautiful God-given gift.
Much Love,
Brenda Lucius
Kayla's mom

Anonymous said...

Maria was so special, because her parents were so special, and so faithful to Christ. Thanks for sharing Maria's First Birthday in heavan. I'm still praying for you and Sophie's parents daily. I still can't imagine your grief, but I know with your faith, you're going to be ok.

Happy Birthday Angel Maria....
Thanks for being such a beautiful example of Christ's love.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to your little angel. We pray for her and your family every night. Thanks so much for sharing your beautiful letter to Maria for her birthday. You are great parents.
God be with you .
Cathy Thompson

Anonymous said...

happy birthday maria, we miss you.

Anonymous said...

Dear Beautiful Maria,
Even though wenever met, I feel so close to you. I think about you so often, and remember your smile as I walked down the hall with my class. You have just had your frst birthday with Jesus!!! Happy Birthday! Thank you so much for showing me what real love is. Although I never met you personally, I love you so much!
Happy Birthday Sunflower!
Love, Rachael

Anonymous said...

Dear Beautiful Maria,
Even though we never met,I feel like have become so close to you. I remember seeing your precious smile as I walked down the hall with my class. You are such an inspiration to everyone especially me. I look forward to meeting you one day in heaven. Happy Birthday Beautiful Maria! Take care of your family. I miss you and love you!
Love, Rachael

Anonymous said...

Dear Maria,

We quietly prayed and asked our dear Lord to keep us strong in our faith and devotion.

The Miracle of Maria began on January 11th.

Thank you for sharing your gifts in so many discrete ways. You are truly an angel!