When our youngest daughter, Avery, was diagnosed with leukemia at the fragile age of five months, we were at our most vulnerable. We had to be wise, proactive, prayerful, and vested in each decision.
We were thrown into a new world of doctors, procedures, and protocols to protect Avery and her weakened immune system. The team at Cook Children’s Medical center in Fort Worth, Texas, saw our wide eyes and trembling hands, and they carefully explained what needed to happen. Avery had to stay in the hospital 24/7 during and between treatments. It was excruciating to not have her home, but we knew this plan was vital to her survival.
A trauma of this magnitude presents unexpected struggles, and it reveals what it takes to face all challenges. You need help even when you aren’t sure what to ask for.
While our tired minds struggled with logistics, my sister Cindy, a nurse, called and said she was quitting her job and moving to be near us, I wept at such generosity. She fulfilled that promise to help care for our kids at home (as she cared for her own family) and to make sure we had what we needed to remain strong for Avery.
Seven months later we brought Avery home. Now, years later, she remains cancer-free. Her cancer journey happened before mine, so my baby daughter was my example of endurance and hope when my labs revealed a challenging path. I learned to ask for help and receive it on behalf of Avery and later for myself and our family.
I came out the other side of this trial with a greater sensitivity and desire to help others. Serving is a joy. And helping a family create a sanctuary is a privilege I won’t ever take lightly. You never know the ways a home will nurture people in their lifetime.
From day one, I wanted my business to be personal. And what is more personal than joining an individual or family on a tour of their sanctuary while discovering ways to make that space even more fully “them”? I started offering a service to clients called a walk-through. We pick a day for me to show up and journey through their home as they open doors, drapes, and closets so I can better understand their needs. I take it all in with joy. I ask them questions about light, color, and style likes and dislikes as we walk from room to room. I share what a sense of home has meant to me from childhood and through the years, and they open up about what matters most to them. Sometimes they apologize because belongings are scattered on the floor or the living room has furniture they purchased on impulse or never embraced. I’m quick to reassure them that they never need to apologize for anything. Areas in which we hope to improve exist inside our four walls and inside ourselves. Every day we have the opportunity to embrace and celebrate the beauty our homes and lives were designed to express.
Regardless of what life might throw at us, this journey is about noticing the new beauty emerging in your challenges and trials, your detours and dreams. Start watching for it.
New beauty emerges in our hopes and plans.
New beauty emerges in our priorities and foundations.
New beauty emerges in our faith and patience.
New beauty emerges in the grandest vision and the smallest detail.
In the lives of women, there’s so much to manage, figure out, and deal with. But one of the greatest insights that my life and profession have taught me is this: Just as great design is not created in a single decision but by bringing many wonderful details together, life is not defined by one or two huge decisions as much as it is shaped by daily details. By tending to our homes and families and investing in our dreams and priorities, we can cultivate the beauty we desire.
Ginger Curtis is the founder of Urbanology Designs in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area of Texas and has twice been awarded First Place Designer of the Year by the Interior Design Society. She was also a two-time finalist for HGTV’s Faces of Design awards. In addition to design, Ginger brings her passion to her many charitable efforts, including nonprofits working to help victims of global sex trafficking and abuse and several cancer research and awareness organizations.
Ginger’s new book Beauty by Design helps women design and decorate their homes based on what matters most. Preorder your copy today and you can enter to win a one-on-one home walk-thorugh with Ginger!