Welcome to the Queen Bees monthly linkup! Katy and I are so glad you stopped by and we hope you will consider linking up a post, whether old or new, about a woman who inspires you. In this world where it is so easy to tear each other down let’s choose, as women, to lift each other up.
Like many of you I assume, I had no clue how to reach out to her. I sent text and Facebook messages and went to Sydney’s service but I had no idea what to say. (Here is a post Michelle has written to share some thoughts with medical students regarding conversations with a grieving parent). Ever since I have sat on the sidelines and watched this brave Momma as she turned to God to provide all of her strength while she openly shared her grief. I think so many people choose to retreat and hold their feelings all inside but Michelle has refused. By sharing her grief so openly she has opened doors for others to come to know God.
You see I truly only had two choices the day I lost her. One was to let Satan beat me down and destroy any purpose God had left for my life and the other was to believe and trust God and allow him to use every broken piece I had left to help him bring good out of the destruction – Michelle Jeter
Though Sydney is no longer here in body she left so much behind. Sydney had embraced her faith fully in the year before she died and after her death Michelle found all of her words left behind and has made them into an inspiring book (see more here). I feel like people tend to lean towards God or choose to blame God when something like this happens and Michelle has absolutely leaned on him. She is sharing her testimony and giving God every ounce of the credit for being able to rise each and every day and continue sharing Sydney’s legacy. She is a living, breathing disciple allowing God to speak through her and use her in any way he needs to.
A sweet friend helped Michelle create these cards using a post it note in Sydney’s own handwriting which Michelle found in her bible and they began handing these out around town.
I think it would be true for most parents dealing with the loss of a child or anyone really losing a loved one; you would do everything to keep their memory alive. Michelle told me it made her so sad to think someone would receive this card and if they wanted to know more about Sydney all they would find on the internet was the story of her accident instead of all the beautiful things about her. She has just put the finishing touches on a website for her baby girl. Sydney Lisa Jeter had so much to say! From the time this girl was two she was running that mouth and always excited about everything. Much like her mom she was going to make her presence known and she definitely was all about celebrating everything.
In another recent post, What if His Answer is No, Michelle really touched me with her words. It is so true that we are always quick to thank God for our blessings but we often falter in tough times and don’t necessarily remember that he walks with us through the good and the bad. These words really touched me as I have so much to celebrate even on the not so good days; we all do because we have a Savior who will never leave our side.
He constantly reminds me that he didn’t promise us a perfect life, he promised us that he would be with us as we walked through it…that he would never leave us..that if we fell into his arms he is big enough and powerful enough to carry us even if his answer is NO and if we cling to him that answer is only temporary. – Michelle Jeter
I cannot thank Michelle enough for what she has taught me about grief. My grandmother has lost all three of her babies and I will be the first to admit I just have not been able to understand stand her grief. Through writings such as A Grieving Parent’s Disability. Michelle has shown me that even if you can laugh again and find joy in life again, a piece of you is gone forever and you will never again be completely whole.
Michelle, you are beautiful. You are a loving mom, a compassionate wife and you are carrying out Syd’s legacy in exactly the way she would have wanted by shouting to the world all there is to celebrate. You inspire me to appreciate the time I have with my family just a little bit more, to trust God with my whole heart and to be compassionate towards others. I am so incredibly proud of you and I’m positive your girl is absolutely beaming at the woman you are today.
While Michelle has inspired me and so many others, I hope that this post will also touch someone and lead them to the help their heart is longing for. To read all about Sydney’s Legacy visit her website here.
My personal vision statement is to use my empathetic, creative passion for humanity, to encourage and advise others that believe they are worthless or broken, and to tell them of their Father in heaven who believes they are beautiful and loves them unconditionally. – Sydney Lisa Jeter