Actress Roma Downey lost her mother when she was just 10 years old and a move to the United States from Northern Ireland in her young adult life after her father died when she was 20 made her anxious to face a new life away from her roots.
Speaking with Pure Talk, Downey shared that her mother's loss left a big hole in her life. The arrival of her daughter Reilly in 1996, however, filled the emptiness and helped her heal from the trauma that scarred her childhood.
Downey also found a friend and a "second mother" in her "Touched by An Angel" co-star Della Reese, whom she worked together with on the CBS show from 1994 to 2003. In Downey's new book, "Box of Butterflies: Discovering the Unexpected Blessings All Around Us," the actress shared that Reese showed her "unconditional love that only a mother can give."
It was actually Reese who officiated her wedding to "Survivor" creator Mark Burnett in 2007. Reese's husband Franklin Lett stood in place for Downey's late father.
The deeply Christian star also said that God has always guided her path in both the high and low moments of her life. This belief taught her to always be grateful to God regardless of what she's going through.
"I really did decide to open up on the losses and the longings of my own heart," Downey said. "God has met me every step of the way."
Downey also shared that her struggles allowed her to become comfortable with her vulnerabilities. This enabled her to be kinder to the people she encounters everyday because she realized that each person goes through their own struggles.
Aside from Downey's testimonies, "Box of Butterflies" is presented like a scrapbook filled with the actress' favorite memories, photographs and poems. The book is in stores now.