Tuesday, July 15, 2014


Almost everywhere I go people ask how I am.
If that has been you... thank you for asking. Thank you for caring.
Thank you.
However usually my response is "we are OK"
which is true.
Life doesn't look much different today than it did 2 months ago.
And I suspect as life changes we adjust our sails accordingly and absorb the slight shifts.
I also do not think there is a way to prepare for grief.
So most days I awake to the boys already being loud and stamping about.
We eat, play, clean and do.
Andy sleeps.
A lot.
And we all live the day before us, hopefully, to the best of our ability.
The only changes I have really noticed since we decided to stop treatment are the slight increase in the Captain's sleeping and the slight decrease in his ability to move his right leg well.
He falls about 2 times a week. Give or take. He has yet to hurt himself, praise God. And it takes great effort by both he and I to hoist him back into an upright and standing position.
We have received so many cards, emails, texts, messages. It is overwhelmingly amazing. We feel loved and cared for and blessed. If you have sent me one... please know, I have read it, I have most likely responded in my mind... and then my hands and brain start to do something else and your sweet correspondence gets buried in my list. I know I have let some fall through the cracks... and I apologize. Please know I have read everything... and been blessed by your kind words of encouragement and prayer.
Since the decision to stop treatment... which is a phrase and an action people, in general, do not like to hear or accept... the reality of what is before us has begun to take shape.
Andy is dying.
It was not a decision made in haste. It was not made lightly.
And it was not made without thought or guidance.
And even though I am 100% confident that the decision we made was best for our family, for us, for Andy... It is still heartbreaking.
However I have had many moments of encouragement these past weeks. A sweet lady was sharing what she knew to be true of God in her own life... and her words have raced around my mind for over a week... following my thoughts and entering my conversations.
She said:
 "Heaven is our reward, not our consolation prize."
And I fell in love with it.
Because it is exactly how I had been feeling, how I had been thinking, how I wanted to tell people Andy and I were viewing this situation but couldn't come up with the proper way to do so....
But there it is... beautifully succinct and wonderfully stated.
 "Heaven is our reward, not our consolation prize."
And then Sunday the sermon was on Ecclesiastes 7:1-6
And I heard:
7:1 A good name is better than a good ointment,
And the day of one’s death is better than the day of one’s birth.
It is better to go to a house of mourning
Than to go to a house of feasting,
Because that is the end of every man,
And the living takes it to heart.
and was reminded that:
Psalm 116:15
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants.
This is the view I hold on Caden's death... I mean, we even have a celebration on her Heaven day...
Because in my heart I know that the day she went to Heaven to be with Christ forever was far greater than the day she was born.
And so it will be with Andy... Because Andy has accepted Christ as his personal savior... when he dies he will go to Heaven, to be with Christ... to be with Caden, forever.
However, we are human. And with this knowledge and belief we also know there is pain with the death of a loved one. There is a tension to the death of a believer... between joy and grief.
Because, quite frankly, it hurts. It physically aches to miss someone you love.
But that hurt will be mine... not Andy's.
and, I know, the pain does not last forever.
God is gracious in that way.
So although we know what is in store... we talk about it openly... we discuss what it means for me, the boys and our families... we do not lose heart, instead we take courage because we know...
Heaven is our reward, not our consolation prize.
if your interested in the sermon I spoke of, It's available here. 

Upside Down - Biblical Better and Worse


Thursday, July 10, 2014

a decade of marraige

Today the Captain and I have been married 10 years.
When I thought of writing this post, a lot of things came to mind.
I thought of doing a timeline of pictures, complete with commentary about said pictures and how God was shaping our lives.
I thought about showing you all pictures from our recent trip to Colorado and just telling you it was our anniversary celebration for this year.
I considered just posting an insane number of pictures of me and Andy, and commenting on how these past 10 years have changed not only our appearance, but our heart and our perspective.
However between real life (taking care of my boys, my hubby, my dog and my home) and my procrastination... you will get none of those very detailed posts.
What you will get is a video of our wedding reception.
Which I'm pretty sure I post every year.
It's about 10 minutes long.
Well worth it.
As Rigg said this morning while watching it "Daddy is talking! He doesn't have that cancer in his brain!"
Which is true... a fact, when pointed out by your beautiful son, makes you cry.
A few things to know before watching the video.
I was skinny... and very blonde.
The Captain had HAIR and liked to chew gum.
Our wedding party was big.
It was CRAZY hot and humid that day.
It rained so hard during the actual ceremony we didn't think we would have our reception.
But the rain did stop...
Because of the wet and humidity... our reception was mostly cake, chatting and dancing... we "forgot" the toasts, and all other formalities.
Jon is one of Andy's best friends who was serving in Iraq, not able to be with us.
My sister is giving her "belated" toast wet, because some bridesmaids jumped into the pool too... just not on camera.
(and, per her toast, I should mention, we fought a lot growing up... but are good friends now)
Enjoy my wedding day!