My Speech from the Intermountain Donor Recognition Ceremony

May 10, 2012

Tonight I'd like to talk about scars. Some seen, most unseen. I know everyone in this room has them. I want to tell you a little about mine.

Of course I have the usual scars one accumulates during childhood--a small scar on my upper right eyelid from the gash I probably deserved after falling off the bed and onto the medal bed frame at 2 yrs. old. I was monkeying around of course.

Or the scar on my knee I earned in college while midnight rollerblading the streets of Provo and hitting an unforeseen patch of gravel. 

I have the small and unseen scars of past unrequited loves and deep disappointments, loneliness, and hurt.

But nothing compares to the scars I live with now. The scars that only those of us who have lost a loved one can understand. Sometimes we're the only ones who can ever see them or recognize them in others.

Before I tell you too much about how I got my deepest scars, I want to share a quote with you from a book I recently finished called, Little Bee. Little Bee is a Nigerian girl who witnessed and survived horrific tragedy in her country, as well as enduring 2 years inside a British Immigration Detention Center. She implores the reader, ""I ask you right here to please agree with me that a scar is never ugly. That is what the scar makers want us to think. But you and I, we must make an agreement to defy them. We must see all scars as beauty. Okay? This will be our secret."

The soul-searing pain and opening of my psychological wounds began on a beautiful Sunday in May of 2008. After primping for church and finally making it out the door with my soon-to-be 2 yr. old daughter, Lucy, we sat restlessly in our pew for as long as we could manage before needing to taker her energetic bundle out to the foyer for distraction and consoling.

When we realized she wasn't going to settle down and got her strapped in her car seat to leave, I handed her a small Tupperware of thinly sliced apples. That's when she began to choke. That's when i called for my husband and he administered the Heimlich maneuver. That's when my eyes locked with hers for the last time. That's when friends and medical professionals poured out of the church building to assist us and eventually the life-flight helicopter landed and whisked her body away.

That's when I knew I would never be the same. The irreversible wounds would become scars I'd carry the rest of my life.

But the deepest cut came when I held my daughter in my arms and the organ harvesting team wheeled us down the hallway to the yellow line where I gave my daughter's body away. I knew that scar would be the most beautiful.

I heard later, after Lucy's grandmothers reverently dressed her for the burial, of the long and precise scars on her body where her perfect little organs were extracted to save the lives of other scarred and scared souls.

Not only do her recipients share her organs--they share her scars.

For every grieving face I see her tonight, there is another living face out there in the world--sharing the scarsof your loved ones.

In 7 short weeks I am due to give birth to a little girl on my Lucy's birthday. Bringing her into the world will be painful and no doubt, leave some scarring. But the beauty that comes with this new life will be worth the pain. A healing balm.

I knew everyone here tonight has scars. Deep wounds that are still very tender and raw...still bleeding even. Others perhaps have "tightened" and hardened over the years--but they are there

I want you to remember our earlier agreement we made with Little Bee about our scars being beautiful. Sometimes people have to look away because they see too much beauty and we can't blame them.

So be proud of your scars. And the MORE-THAN-HONORABLE scars left on the bodies of those we love and buried.

THERE WILL BE HEALING. You will experience your own healing balms in your life that will help soothe the sting.

Have faith that your scars will become more elastic and you will be able to bend and stretch and live your life with greater range of motion--embracing the scars you share with your departed and knowing you hold a beauty, wisdom, perspective, gift, and knowledge--that the scar-less will never know.


Neilesh Kumar on 06/04/2012
I came across your blog when googling for cool biotechnology articles – didn’t expect to find this, but enjoyed some of your posts. Keep it up.

Neilesh Kumar on 06/22/2012
I came across your blog when googling for cool biotechnology articles – didn’t expect to find this, but enjoyed some of your posts. Keep it up.

Sheree on 06/23/2012
Thank you for creating this website. I have found so much support and comfort in what I have read. This speech is wonderful in has broadened my understanding of scars. Its positive and thought provoking. Thank you again for all of your hard work in helping all those with grieft... Your truely a gift from Heavenly Father.

julie jones on 07/09/2012
Molly i had no idea. It has been a long time since i have talked with you. I am so sorry to hear about lucy. You are strong and did something great for other people with your loss. Thanks for sharing.

KH on 07/12/2012
You've probably already heard of Stephanie Nielson. I just finished reading her book, Heaven is Here. Toward the end she writes about meeting Elder Holland of the Council of the Twelve Apostles (of the LDS Church.) What he tells her about scars is amazing. You'll have to find it in the book because I know I won't quote it correctly. But scars are beautiful, especially Christ's and because He knows all about scars.

Scabs on 07/20/2012
My story is a little different than yours, but there is intense pain, grief and loss too. It seems the more I learn about pain the more I understand that pain is pain no matter how it comes to you. And I suppose scars are scars too. Without them I'd never have been able to walk path I'm walking and healing on. Scars and pain have irrevocably changed me.

Surendra on 08/06/2012
There is so much competition beetwen club making companies that you can find some great deals any time. The best deals are on the stuff that is last years model, but even some of the new stuff goes on sale all the time. Check out golf galaxy, edwin watts, golfsmith, those are the bigger named golf retail stores. Other good places that are good to check are sporting goods stores like dicks and sports authority. However for 1000 bucks you are probably going to have to pick and choose what clubs you want. You wont be able to get a complete set of the newer better clubs for that much. You can probably get a set of irons a driver and a hybrid or fairway wood or two, but im not sure you will be able to get a wedge or two and a putter with that. Happy shopping. Was this answer helpful?

Marion NC on 11/12/2012
Thank you for this beautiful site. Your speech was beautiful. As one who recently <a href="">lost of child </a> I completely understand what your going through

Shannon on 12/04/2012
this might be a little odd but I saw your story on the BYU channel I believe I could not help but think about a recent story I have followed, feeling like it was similar and this poor mother could maybe use something like you! you probably have so a little presumptuous of me to assume you have not. My daughter was on the volleyball team that honored Mia at their State tournament. Her words are so raw, and as a stranger and someone who has not lost a child I offer no help. I also wanted to tell you what a beutiful thing you have done with your blog and as I read about all those you have helped. God Bless :)

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