Every time I read her journal I'm sucked into a few minutes of her life like a play on stage. She lost her sister and brother in law last July in a horrific car accident that left her sisterless and left 3 children without a mommy and a daddy. Dani was chosen as the childrens god mother and so she moved back to her home town from New York City and started teaching at the local elementary school. She stepped into the shoes of mom with grace while dealing with the losses of her sister and brother in law, while dealing with 3 grieving young ones.
While taking over the role of mother, with the help of her family. Her brother moved into the apartment above the garage to be close and help out as well. Did I mention they are living in the same house that her sister and brother in law bought? She also started dating her brother in law's partner and after months of being told he's the one. He proved us all right and purposed to Dani. She of course accepted the beautiful diamond ring he had purchased with the help of some of her family members and her girl friends from New York.
She chose to wait to wear her engagement ring until she was able to sit down with Bobby(fiance) and the 3 kids and explain to them as well as answer their questions. She spoke to the childrens grief counselor who agreed that they should sit down and talk with the kids about it. When they did sit down and talk with the kids they of course were thrilled but the oldest did have some questions. Ryan asked her if they had to call Bobby dad. She of course was floored but who wouldn't be right? She told him he could just call him Uncle Bobby. Ryan who is 7 but has the flare of a 30 year old grown adult asked Dani "What if we want to call him dad?"
I've been keeping track of what's been going on in her life but even this had me floored and tearful. Ryan is the oldest of the 3 kids and so when he lost his mom and dad he understood early on that it means mommy and daddy are not going to be coming back. He has decided with the help of his younger sister, grandpa and the pastor at their church that he wants to call Dani , mom and Bobby, dad come fall when he moves in after the wedding.
In 2.3 seconds Dani became MOM in every sense of the word. For a woman who has lost her best friend, her brother in law and taking on the role of mom. She has finally come full circle and now has babies of her very own. Even though she's been their mom she is now mom.
Dani Callahan is my mommy hero for her self sacrifice, unyeilding devotion to her kids. Her love and her unselfishness have touched my heart in many ways I've never known. Her dedication to her family, her job and the ability to keep herself and her little ones together in the face of devistating tradgedy. I have never met her in person but she has encouraged me to face head on what ever it is that life throws my way. Dani, if you ever read this. Please know that your story has touched so many people and given people hope in the face of adversity. Know that many of us pray for you daily and because of your story it keeps us all hopeful for our own lives that we all may be as blessed as you have been. Thank you for being my Mommy Hero.