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Colleen’s Corner: Open Letter to My Ellie

Colleen Mook

 

Dear Ellie,Princess Ellie

Happy 6th Birthday! Six years ago today, in a heartbeat, my life changed dramatically. The years since have been the hardest of my life, but I truly believe you have made me stronger and better. I have learned so many things from you. Here are just a few:

  1. You Get What You Get and You Don’t Get Upset. After your birth, when we were struggling with all of your issues and wondering what your future would be, I remember answering Mom-Mom and Pop-Pop when they asked if I was okay, “I’m fine. Like I tell the older kids, you get what you get and you don’t get upset.” Thank you for teaching me to accept you from the beginning. It has made my journey with you so much easier. I love you unconditionally just the way you are.
  2. We can communicate without words. Of course, I wish we could talk with words, but I know you love me lots and you know I love you lots. Isn’t that what it’s really all about? It hurts me beyond words when you are sick, or hurt, or scared and you can’t tell me what’s wrong. Believe me when I tell you I’m working on finding a way for us to figure these things out. But until then just know I don’t want you to be in pain or afraid. I’m trying my best.
  3. You taught me how to really pray. I went to Catholic school for 16 years but I never really learned to rely on my Faith and the power of prayer until I had you. Your good Mom-Mom taught me that I have to be really specific and ask for what I want. We still pray daily for you—as do so many wonderful others—and I’m still waiting for that miracle. Until it occurs, though, we are grateful for the many answered prayers we have received along the way.
  4. You taught me that sleep is overrated. We joke that your extra genetic material contains the “no-sleep"To The World you are one but to one, you are the world." gene”. You’ve taught me to cope pretty well with very little sleep, but man those first five years were really hard. Thank you for cooperating with me lately as I’m learning I actually do better with sleep. We won’t talk about last night though.  I also love my coffee cup I got because of you for two reasons: the coffee I put in it and the fuel it provides, but more so the message which keeps me going after a rough night: “To the world you might be one person, but to one person you might be the world.”
  5. You taught me to laugh rather than cry. In many situations we’re dealt, we feel like crying but we usually laugh. So we laugh a lot in our family. A nurse once remarked to me about you, “You know, she’s not that odd.” Now, you and I look at each other and I say, “Hey, El, you’re not that odd.” What was she thinking? Sometimes you just have to laugh.
  6. You are here for a reason. You are my miracle baby. You survived against the odds and joined us here on Earth for a reason. You’ve taught so many people so much in your six years; more than most of us can teach in a lifetime. You’ve taught the power of unconditional love, the power of prayer, the ability to make others smile by making them feel like a million bucks. You are patient. You would clap hands all day with anyone. I bet you wonder why we are all rushing around all day with our heads in the computer or griping about people when we could really just love each other and all be as happy as you. You are right, again.

Thank you, Ellie. You continue to teach me and bless me and everyone that has the opportunity to really get to know you. You are a pretty special kid. Yes, you are a lot of work, and sometimes you test my patience. Your physical and mental disabilities are a daily challenge for me, but your goodness and your wholesomeness are worth all of it and then some.

Thanks for being my kid. I love you!

Mommy

Tags : , , 40 Comments



40 Comments → “Colleen’s Corner: Open Letter to My Ellie”


  1. Kelley

    2yearsago

    I love the wisdom of Ellie’s Mom! Happy birthday little girl – love ya!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Thank you!


  2. Celine Severino

    2yearsago

    Ellie is truly a blessing. Happy Birthday, sweet pea. Love you much!
    Thank you, Col, for sharing your heart with us about the roller coaster ride of love! God Bless you all.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Lee,
      Thank you for you and being there for me and my girl.


  3. metaMOMphorsis

    2yearsago

    Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful letter Colleen. You had me all choked up. Congratulations to you and your daughter on her birthday. I wish the two of you and your family many, many blessings.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Thanks so much, Chipo! I appreciate it. Happy Thanksgiving!


  4. Carolyn Campot

    2yearsago

    What a beautiful letter Coll. You are so truly blessed and your strength is a gift you share with so many others. You are teaching so many people all of the things you have learned and are still learningon the journey. You have so much to be thankful for this holiday season.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Carolyn,
      Thanks so much! I appreciate it. Are we going to see each other this weekend? If this weekend doesn’t work out, let’s definitely plan for next time you are home. OK?
      Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!
      Col


  5. Greg Citro

    2yearsago

    This is awesome Col! Beautifully written. Thank you for sharing!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Thanks Greg! Thanks for doing a beautiful job with your Abby too. I learn so much from so many others in similar situations like you and Megan too. Happy Thanksgiving!


  6. Catherine

    2yearsago

    Hi Colleen–I retweeted this letter on @DolanFund….hope it’s okay! Happy birthday to Ellie!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Of course, thank you for RTing and thank you guys for all you do to support the families of medically fragile and special needs children.
      You know we love and appreciate the Dolan Fund.
      Happy Thanksgiving!


  7. Kay Dugery

    2yearsago

    That’s the true meaning of Thanksgiving and the upcoming Christmas season. Thanks for sharing – it makes me stop and REALLY think about all of my blessings – even when they don’t always first appear as blessings. Happy Birthday Ellie!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Kay,
      Thanks so much! Enjoy those cute blessings of yours. Happy Thanksgiving!
      Col


  8. Bridget Barton

    2yearsago

    Happy Birthday Sweet Ellie! You are one lucky girl to have such a wonderful and loving (and eloquent!) Mom and Dad:) Thank you for making us all smile. Love, your friend Paige and all of the Bartons


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi to Paige (Ellie’s BFF) and Gang,
      Thank you! Love you guys. Happy Thanksgiving.
      Col


  9. Gail Ziring

    2yearsago

    Dear Colleen,

    Your letter to Ellie was just so heartwarming and touching. How quickly time goes for all of us who have prayed for Ellie these past six years. We are sure it does not go quickly for you during some of those long nights and days. We, at OLHC prayer group, pray for Ellie each week. May you have a blessed Thanksgiving with your wonderful family.

    Love,
    Gail Ziring


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Thanks Mrs. Ziring,
      Please pass on our thanks too to the OLHC group. We’ve come a long way.
      Happy Thanksgiving!
      xoxo,
      Colleen


  10. Kim Chapin

    2yearsago

    inspiring… Thanks for your candor and wisdom. Ellie takes after her parents,,, truly amazing!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Thanks Kim. Loved seeing you the other day. Happy Thanksgiving!


  11. Jen Pack McDill

    2yearsago

    Col, what a beautiful letter. Ellie is a very lucky girl to have parents like you and Brad.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Jen,
      It is so great to hear from you! Thank you. I miss you and think of you often. One of these days we will see each other again. Happy Thanksgiving! Col


  12. Peggy Ann Osborne

    2yearsago

    It’s 10:40 p.m.and I can’t go to bed without commenting. This message is one of the first things that I read this morning and I passed it on to so many of my friends “the old fashioned way” – on
    e-mail. I shared the heartfelt story of a wonderful Mother and a super Dad and three fun, caring and supportive siblings. What lessons I have learned from you, Colleen, along my life’s journey! I can’t believe that these loving words of goodness, kindness and love come from one of my children to one of her children, her very special child, our beloved Ellie. Colleen, you are a delightful woman. You are a loving and caring wife to Brad. You are a great Mother to your four beautiful children. You are a kind and caring daughter. You are a successful business owner. You boggle my mind in the best possible way. How you do it, I don’t know. I respect you, Colleen, for your altruistic goodness and I wish you all the best in the goals you pursue now, tomorrow and forever. I love you and I am so very proud to be your Mother.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Mom,
      Thank you! You taught me it all so I am grateful for you and helping me get to where I am today. I never could have handled the Ellie situation without my Sister Mary Mommy guiding me and supporting me the entire way. I love you (and of course Dad) too! xoxo, Col


  13. Maggie Jones

    2yearsago

    Colleen,

    I just cried my eyes out in a good way. You are amazing and so is Ellie! Happy Birthday to Ellie and to many more!!!!!


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Mag,
      Thank you! Enjoy those beautiful angels this Thanksgiving!


  14. Nick Araco

    2yearsago

    Colleen, you and Brad set amazing examples for all of us who struggle with simply managing the ‘daily grind.’ You inspire us to focus on what matters most, and that the small stuff is not worth ‘sweating over.’ We are so thankful to have reconnected with you at St. Alphonsus, and are here as your friends and supporters, whenever you need us. Happy Thanksgiving, from The Araco’s.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Nick, thank you so much! Yes, we are super happy to have reconnected with you guys and I look forward to spending more time with you guys. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!


  15. Sindy Young

    2yearsago

    Oh Colleen, you and your family never cease to amaze me. Thank God for you and all you have been through and for how much more you will handle with faith, courage, strength, laughter and love. Happy Birthday El. Happy Thanksgiving one and all.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Sindy,
      Awww, thank you. Thanks for your sweet note. I hope you guys had a great Thanksgiving! We did.
      Take Care, Colleen


  16. Meredith Pizzi

    2yearsago

    What a gift Ellie is! And she is so blessed to have such a loving family to accompany her each and every day.
    Thanks for sharing this, Colleen.
    Meredith


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Meredith,
      Thank you! I know we were brought together as teammates for a reason with M3. Since the moment I met you in Philadelphia, I knew you were pretty special. You have a pretty amazing business helping so many others with your beautiful voice. I can’t wait until my Ellie can listen to one of your cd’s or have you play for her in person someday. Thank you, Colleen


  17. Deidrea Haysel

    2yearsago

    Just.Beautiful! Love can and does conquer all..even with unspoken words..love is understood <3


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Deidrea,
      Thanks so much! You are so right, love does conquer all. xoxo


  18. Joan

    2yearsago

    So beautiful, Colleen. You are blessed and so is Ellie.


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Joan, thank you! I am so happy that we are getting to know each other and feeling very grateful for M3 and the wonderful peeps (like YOU) that I have met. Thanks for the sweet comment.


  19. Terri

    2yearsago

    Dear Colleen,

    I just happened on this blog after reading a piece about you in the Inquirer. I can’t stop crying ~ your story about Ellie has really touched my heart profoundly. I am in awe of your strength. I don’t know if I would be as strong as you are. I hope I would. If there is any way that I could help Ellie or other children like her by volunteering my time in some way, feel free to contact me. I live in Villanova & would be more than willing to assist in any way that I could. I am blessed with 2 daughters and can only imagine how stressful some of your days must be.

    My Best ~ Terri


    • Colleen Mook

      2yearsago

      Hi Terri,
      You are so awesome! Thank you for reading and commenting. It is really because of good people like you that have helped me along the way. I think you are pretty incredible that you are looking to help others. I have your email and will keep in touch.
      It’s really the little things that mean the most to me now like acknowledging my daughter when we are out in public. I ALWAYS remember those that don’t look away and instead talk to her and my other kids notice too (the good looks and the bad looks). So, I could go on and on BUT thank you. Happy to hear you have 2 super blessings in your life too and that you get it.
      Thank you, thank you. And if you are ever in the Horsham area, stop in!!
      Best,
      Colleen


  20. Jude

    1yearago

    I loved this Colleen! What a great mom you are. I can only hope to live up to your example. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Love, Jude
    (Matt’s cousin)


    • Colleen Mook

      1yearago

      Hi Jude,
      Thanks for reading and writing! Thank you and you are a great (& fun) Mom too! Hope to see you soon.
      Best,
      Colleen


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