Choosing Joy in a Joyless Time
When I think of that name, I think of three specific words: fairy, courageous, and eloquent.
First off, I think of fairy because she literally is a fairy. Madison is working in Orlando, Florida this semester as an intern with the Disney College Program - if that’s not proof enough, I don’t know how much more you need. Her sweet spirit sprinkles pixie-dust-goodness all over everyone she comes in contact with.
Courageous says a bit more about her character. At the beginning of September, Madison’s father, Michael Garrett, was diagnosed with an inoperable, incurable brain stem tumor. Her initial post on Facebook, and her initial texts to me, were a beacon of hope in such a hopeless situation. Through the impossible news she had just received, instead of choosing defeat, depression, and pity, Madison chose courage, tenacity to believe in something bigger than herself, and overwhelming faith and hope. Her courage reaches beyond anything I could ever imagine, overflowing into the hearts of those around her. Her openness and vulnerability has inspired so many around her to choose joy in such a joyless time. Even with 397 miles in between her and Gamma Phi Beta, she is not only “building strong girls” within our sisterhood, but building strong people by encouraging them to choose hope, confidence, and belief in something greater than what this world has to offer.
Lastly, Madison is such an eloquent writer. I told her that I would only be her little if she promised to proofread my papers before I turned them in. Although she always swore she would never write a blog, I am sure glad she went back on her word. She’s mentioned that this is one of the ways she has been able to cope through this situation, and I know I’m not the only one who’s glad she has been so gracious to let us in. So, if you have an opportunity, and I encourage you to make time, please read her blog.
Madison: Gamma Phi Beta stands behind you in sending up prayers, thoughts and good vibes for your dad. I encourage everyone reading this to do the same. We love you!
Written by Jordan Pitts, Gamma Phi Beta