Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Pennies from Heaven..Happy Birthday Tarnia x

I found a penny today
Just lying on the ground.

But it's not just a penny,
this little coin I've found.

When an Angel misses you,
They toss a penny down.

Sometimes just to cheer you up,
To make a smile out of your frown.

So, don't pass by that penny,
When you're feeling blue. It may be a penny from heaven,
that an Angel's tossed to you.

Today is my sister Tarnia’s birthday….AND…it’s been a good day!

Tarnia and her husband Tone

Maybe it’s because I started the day off with an early morning Skype with her oldest son Alexander.

I told him I hope he does something fun for his mum today, as that’s what she would’ve wanted…for him to be happy, for her husband Tone and all her children to be happy.

And that fuels me to be there for them…to help them shine in life with encouragement and love like she would’ve done….

I miss her kids being over here in the USA.  I love them like my own and feel lucky for the 4 precious gifts in her children that she’s left with us.

Driving Dempsey to school this morning I thought of her, how I’d have called her today and reminded her with a smile in my voice, how much older than me she is! :)

I also know I’d be on the call for at least an hour as she loved to chat…and that made me smile.

I think Tarnia’s birthday, as it does every year, reminds me not to be complacent about life…to enjoy all the little things that she can’t take pleasure in anymore.

I rang my Dad in Australia and we chatted about what things would be like in our family if Tarnia was here…and I love that NOW, my dad shares his thoughts.

I was also surprised to hear he’d taken flowers to her grave.  Something he never does as it upsets him….I was really proud of him! Time is a great healer sometimes…..

I told Dad, especially on Tarnia’s birthday, her not being alive prompts me to be grateful that I have the life I do…a gift that keeps giving from her….

Things like….being able to wander into Dempsey’s room as the sun starts its day, to crawl into her warm bed beside her for a cuddle and have her snuggle up to me, with her head under my chin as we talk about the day ahead.

Tarnia and I always did that with my mum….every single morning…it was tradition…much to dad’s annoyance some days! :)

Nuzzling up to Dempsey reminded me of that today….that Tarnia doesn’t get to enjoy these things with her kids. It made me thankful….

And seeing Dempsey blossom into a pre-teen, or a tween as they call it these days.... This photo says it all….some days I feel so privileged that she’s mine and that I’m alive to witness it….

And since my last post, Rose and I have stumbled upon tranquility at it’s finest in the hills around my home.

We’ve hiked down rock-strewn roads, surrounded by horses and wobbly new foals and nervous squirrels and rabbits…..all the while chatting about life, our lives…sharing our stories.

                       Rose showing me this glorious time I'll get her sweet face! :)

The more time I spend with Rose the more I feel she’s similar to mum in so many ways…it’s such a gift!

She stops to look at the flowers and trees and comments on the bird life and just how beautiful our surrounds are…just like my mum would’ve, and I find myself smiling at that.

Last week she hugged me in the middle of our hike and told me she feels honored that I’m her friend…..and I thought, “How did I get so bloody lucky to have met her?” I like to think Mum or Tarnia has sent her. :)

 My cousin Melanie and Dempsey

My cousin Melanie visited from Australia over the weekend, so I was spoilt with lots of warm hugs and deep conversation about life with Mels. She spent time with Dempsey which warmed my heart.

Even hanging the wet towels from their swim on our clothes line reminded me life isn’t to be taken for granted!  That I can do this mundane stuff that my sister can’t anymore.

And especially today, I do wish Tarnia was here, but I know that’s impossible. So instead, I make a promise to myself not to take anything for granted…yes, even if it’s pegging the washing to our line and watching it flap about in the breeze! :)

Rather than being bitter and closed off to life because of what’s happened to our family, or the fear of what ‘might’ happen…I choose to inhale all of life’s ups and downs and let them teach me how to be appreciative.  Yes, today Tarnia has given me that gift of awareness...of everything...

Tarnia always wanted to be a teacher…she went to Uni, to follow that dream.  And today she is one of my greatest teachers, a guide for me on this twisting path of life….to remind me to be happy, to be grateful and to pay it forward to others….to share.

This afternoon, Peter arrived home early from work, wanting to go to Lowes Hardware…I yawned at the thought of Lowes, but went anyway.

And as I stepped out of our car in Lowe’s parking lot, there on the ground at my feet was a dirty old penny, lying in my path. I picked it up, smiled and said to Peter, “I think this is a penny from heaven….from Tarnia!”

“Yeah right Dee!” was his answer..:)

Well, I like to think that on Tarnia’s birthday, she sent her little sister a sign…to remind me to laugh, to enjoy every second and always, always to believe she’s around….

Happy Birthday Tarnia!  Miss you! x

P.S; we’d need a fire brigade to put out your candles this year! :) x


  1. Beautiful post. I love the comment about the fire brigade!

  2. Thanks Katie!

    If Tarnia was here, I'd be smiling as I made the fire brigade comment! :)

    Thanks for stopping by...another year gone for her. How I wish things were different Katie!

    sending a hug
    Diana x

  3. "Yeah right Dee," typical male. ;P I love that Dempsey is still your baby, cuddling up to mama. I hope I am so fortunate with mine.

    Happy birthday Tarnia. My sister would've turned 35 last week and this Saturday marks 1 yr since her passing.

  4. Lovely Candice,

    I had no idea we had both lost sisters and we had that in common. I'm so sorry...35, wow!! Too young. I bet you like me miss having your sister around. It isnt until they are no longer here we miss what we had I think.

    I bet Macey will always love cuddles from you...I was never too old.

    sending a big hug your way, thanks for your comment Candice.
    Diana x

  5. Came here from the Small Things blog. I work with young children in the US who have disabilities and one of the children that I work with has been recently diagnosed with leukodystrophy. It is rare enough that I know mom is having trouble finding parents who have children with similar diagnoses.

  6. Hi Stacy,

    Nice to have you over for a visit from Kelle's blog.

    You must be a special girl if you work with special needs children. I'm so sorry to hear about the child with leukodystrophy that you know. It is a rare genetic disease, probably one of the most horrid as there is no cure and the child goes from normal to losing their gained abilities very quickly...depending on whether its infantile or juvenile. I'm so sorry for this little on and the parents.

    We have a group email that goes out each time someone posts a question, then anyone can reply to the parents. This is through the however, its primarily for children with Metachromatic Leukodystrophy...I'm not sure which leukodystrophy this child has but the mum could contact Dean Suhr at this Organization who could help them.

    I remember feeling so alone and dealing with so much until I met other families who were having the same challenges as we were with Savannah.

    Thanks for your comment and taking the time to help another...I hope this helps.
    Diana x