Two years ago, our lives changed in ways we could have never imagined. We began a 28 day stay at Childrens Hospital that did not end the way any of us wanted. Beyond the obvious change in our life, of losing Rylie, our lives were changed by the power of kindness. People, we didn’t even know were part of our community, wrapped around us and held us during times of uncertainty and pain. We gained family in the form of nurses, doctors and first responders that cared for us as one of their own. Friends dropped everything to be by our side at the hospital and as we planned Rylie’s celebration of life. We continue to be loved and supported by so many - often meeting them for the first time two years later.
I truly believe this is the power of kindness. Kindness happens in ripples - small little acts that build and become waves changing the shape of our life landscape.
Rylie was never one to dwell in sadness. She had a keen emotional IQ and could sense when someone needed some love. She would honor their feelings, but would always look for a way to boost the mood.
For the second year, I’m taking a page out of her book. I will honor the fact that my heart hurts everyday, missing her, but I will do something to boost the mood.
Each day for the next 28 days, I will intentionally complete a small act of kindness. I will use those ripples to reshape the landscape of both myself and others.
If you’re so compelled, join me on #28daysofkindness. Hopefully, these days are full of stories that capture the power of kindness. I will share them as they occur and would love for you to share your own. Post stories with #28daysofkindness and we’ll celebrate the power of a ripple becoming a wave.
Meghann and Ziggy Guentensberger are Rylie's parents. During their time in the hospital with Rylie and after her death, they began writing about their experiences. What started as a way to keep people informed of Rylie's condition, turned into a way for them to process all that was happening. After she died on May 26, 2017 they both continued to write as a way to process and heal themselves and occasionally inspire others. These writings are housed on the Rylie's ARK Facebook page.