The Heart That Bleeds Gold

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Driven To Make Change

Some people have ice cold hearts, while others are warm and inviting. And then there are those whose hearts bleed gold. It takes the age old saying that someone has a “heart of gold” to an entirely different level. 

If you are not aware, the universal color representing childhood cancer is gold. 

Today, I met a man named Ronnie. He started Driven To Make Change. Before a couple of days ago, I hadn’t known very much about Ronnie and his heart that bleeds gold. He is a compassionate person, who – yes, has a heart of gold. His goal and mission in life right now is to raise awareness for pediatric cancer . 

He’s driving across 48 states to learn all he can about all the  pediatric cancers (139, currently known) and also to raise awareness. His hope is multi faceted. Not only does he have vision to raise funds for fighting cancer and finding a cure – he also seeks to take that deeper and further. 

He wants to aid research into the why. Cause. Find out why or how (any environmental or otherwise) these cancers form. It is then that they become preventable. 

Preventable cancer!?

It sounds like a pipe dream – but, I’ll draw your attention to medical history – so did the cause and/or cure for polio and other similar diseases. Let’s band together and turn this pipe dream into hopeful reality. Don’t tell me it’s not possible. 

Why the passion? 

I’m glad you’ve asked. My daughter Janet (Praying For Little Janet) was diagnosed with a rare (literally one of a kind) brain tumor at age four. She courageously fought brain cancer for three years, and passed away February 13, 2016. She is my why. My passion. My love. There is a giant hole in my heart that only she could ever fill. 

She is not my only why . 

There are so many people – so many families whose lives are turned upside down, in an instant – with two (not so) simple words: childhood cancer. To hear the words “your child has cancer” or “your child has a brain tumor” are game changers. They will (and should) change perspective and priorities in a huge way. Life as you know it will NEVER be the same “normal” again. Life will change. Death may happen. And that part so royally sucks. 

They are now also my why. Every family who hears those words. I fight for my daughter, and I fight for all the families affected by pediatric cancers of all kinds. 

My daughter died. My hope and prayer is that no other family, ever, has to endure this painful kind of journey. 

Pipe dream? Not forever. WE have the power to change things. It will not happen overnight. But, it WILL happen. The key is, we must advocate for our children. They deserve so much more than the 3.8% of federal funding for pediatric cancer research currently alloted. 

Please join me, Ronnie, and all those with hearts that bleed gold, in raising awareness and funds for pediatric cancer research (not only for a cure – but also to be able to pinpoint cause, and thus prevent the cancer) and share hope with the world. 

#RememberTheLove

A Movie, A Band, And A Necklace

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A Movie, A Band, And A Necklace

October 16, 2016. This movie. This band. That necklace. Life changing. Life giving. Life saving.

Every time I try to convince words to take a journey from my brain to the paper, tears threaten to make seeing the words impossible. In an attempt to share even a fraction of the significance of this event, I will break down the event and all the moving parts into little bite-sized pieces. 

Priceless the Movie. 

I’m not going to tell a tall tale. I hadn’t  heard of this movie prior to this text from a very dear friend: 

you…me…Sunday evening ‘Priceless’ at Ronnie’s 20?

So, this being a friend who I love and trust, I basically blindly said yes. She knows me. She gets me. What’s more, though?  She allows me the honor returning the favor. I’m grateful. Alas, I accepted her invitation, and nearly canceled several times. But I didn’t. As this day approached, the excitement and even anticipation grew. 

It made me happy to learn that the band would be in the theater live, playing  a few songs for us. Their flight was a bit delayed, so the acoustic set was after the movie. 

So, this movie is incredible. This is part in fairly certain I can’t get through without my tears going on mass exodus. Again. So, instead, I’ll ask you to click on the following link, and watch the trailer for Priceless

I will say this though. This movie and it’s storyline broke my heart. Mostly because it’s no joke. People, this stuff happens. It’s real, and it’s in our backyards. Don’t get me wrong. I loved the movie, those that produced it, and all who came together to make it happen. It was tremendously well done. I found a surge of emotions at varied times throughout the entire thing. It was beautifully painful. It hurt, and it healed. Most of all, it was God’s heart in a movie. God’s hand holding my shattered heart. The fact that God can use a movie to touch some very deep and dark places is testament to the fact that the whole experience (more to come on that) acted as a healing salve applied to some wounded places. 

After the movie concluded, the band took the stage for a few minutes. They sang/played a handful of songs. Again, the heart of God, in human form, stood before us on that theater stage. The words of their songs grabbed my heart, and didn’t let go. I can’t begin to count the number of times I wiped tears from my eyes. At one point, Joel, from 4 King And Country, looked directly at me. He smiled as if to say, I see you. You matter. Your pain matters. In truth, he probably thought nothing of the sort, but in that moment – God’s grace, His love, just held me. 

At one point, they polled the audience to see if anyone was confused as to who they were, and why a band was live on stage in a movie theater. One person responded. They welcomed her, and asked us all to say hello. 

What happened next floored me. 

Joel picked up a necklace – the one you can see me wearing in the picture above. He spoke about its meaning and significance. The words “She’s worth fighting for” just melted my heart. As he spoke, he looked at me again and reached down and handed it to me. Yes, of course, tears streamed down my cheeks. 

I’m nothing special, but in that moment, God’s love and grace swallowed me whole. It was as if God Himself was giving me a much needed hug. Joel doesn’t know my story, but something (that small voice, like in the movie perhaps?) urged him to share it with me. To give me a gift. A necklace. 

It was more priceless than any gift could have been in that moment. You see, it showered me with God’s love. I felt important, and as if my life has meaning. God used that moment to hold me. To help me see glimpses beyond the pain. It helped me feel hope in tangible ways. It helped me just breathe, and know I’m loved.

I wanted to share this for a multitude of reasons.Mostly to share my own gratitude. To my friend for inviting me. To Joy FM for whatever part you played behind the scenes to help this event happen. To 4 King and Country for the hearts you had in creating this film, delivering it to the public, and the life-giving mini concerts you  allowed His heart and presence to touch others with. And especially to God, for not giving up on me, and for allowing your love to penetrate some shattered and somewhat dark places. Please don’t ever throw up your hands and realize I’m just too much. 

And to all reading, if you might be in pain, know that you are not alone. I do not have to walk your journey to understand that you hurt. I think we all do in some way, shape, or form. I see you, but more importantly, God also sees you – exactly where you are if I could say one more thing, it would just be to not give up. I want to see that your life has value and worth, and you still have purpose here. 
I needed these same reminders yesterday, and they flooded my heart with love and healing. If you need similar reminders, here they are. Someone, please just point me back to this page, and my own words when you see or feel the need.

Know that you’re not alone. It’s okay to not be okay, and it’s okay to reach out. Just don’t give up. There is still time for good things to happen. There is time for hope to surprise you. You are not out of time, and neither am I. If you’re hurting, just take my hand, and allow me to sit with you – even virtually – in this pain. It may be real, but it will not be forever. You will come to know more than the pain that tortures you. You matter. Your story matters. You’re worth so much more than you can comprehend. 

Please, keep giving hope a chance to surprise you. You are loved. 

A  Love Letter From God 

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The following is a love letter. It is a combination of the way I feel, and the truths I know about God. From all I know of Him and His character, I feel as if these could be words He’d say directly if He were standing here with us. Take the words, liken the to your item situation, and be loved. You’re pretty incredible! 

Sweet daughter, 

You are my child. My daughter. You were loved, even before I stitched you together in your mother’s womb. I have loved you since the beginning of time. 

Here are some things you need to hear from me, your Daddy. You are precious, and I adore you. It makes me proud to call you my daughter. You bring me honor. I take pride in watching you live life.

Life has not always been easy. Please know that I see and know this. I did not orchestrate your pain. You have walked through trauma, and I hurt seeing you cry. You may not know this, but I collect all your tears. You are that precious to me. 

I want to remind you of something. I know the pain of losing a child too. My baby boy, He died a brutal death, and I saw Him die. I know you held your baby girl, and watched her breathe her last breath on earth. That is a kind of pain I wish you never felt. I’m sorry, sweet child. I know it doesn’t take away the agony of her death, but know the very real pain of losing my son. I know you know this, but I love Janet. I never wanted her to hurt, and I didn’t give her cancer. I held her through every moment she fought cancer, and when her final days came – she smile, told you she was coming here to me, and she was right. She’s with me now. She had the biggest smile, and was ya me to tell her mama hi. She gave me the best hug just now. I’ll take care of her until you can be reunited. Please never fear. Your daughter isn’t alone here, and is surrounded by light and love. 

Just as I held her prior to her passing, and like I hold her now, I also hold you. I know there are days you wish you weren’t alive. There are days you wish you could push the fast forward button on life and come here also. You will, my child. You will. Let me assure you, though, your time on this earth is not complete. I have a plan and a purpose for your life. You are valuable. You are worthy. There is, and will be much purpose, found even in your pain. Please never even consider removing yourself from the beautiful equation that is life. You are more. You are mine. 

I want you to think about one more thing. I keep telling you you are special. But let me show you how. I told you before that I watched my son die. I did. It hurt. But let me show you something else – you are so special that if it was only for you, and you alone – I would do it all again. I would let him go through that brutal death just make sure you were given the ability to live with me in eternity.

I just smiled, thinking of when you talk to me. I miss your voice when we don’t communicate much. I’m always here with you, we’ve if you some talk to me. I won’t ever leave your side. I know you feel bad, or like it angers me when you get mad at me, or even call me an asshole. No, I do not like to hear you say those words, but that is mostly because I do not like you to feel the pain that causes you the need. I understand though. And not only do I not hold it against you, I love you. I love you more than there are words to say. I need you to understand that I just enjoy talking to you. I like to hear your voice. Please keep talking to me. You do not need me to tell you, that there will be times that you feel like I am silent on an issue. I am, and will be sorry when this hurts you. However, in the long run, you will come to understand this. You will not only survive you will thrive. 

My child, I have not given up on you. I know that you do not look in the mirror and like what you see. You don’t know who you are some days. I know you often times do not feel beautiful, and also feel inadequate. You feel like you’re not worth it. Worth anything  I want to be the one to tell you that you are beautiful. You may not know what might image actually is, but you were built and made in my image. You are a precious creation. You are mine. I breathe life in your lungs and I helped your heartbeat. I am proud of you, and that will not ever change. No matter what you do, where you go, or how even you get there, I will always love you. Please don’t ever forget that. I love you sweetheart.

With all my love, 

God

My Prayer For Radical Hope Church 

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Dear God, 

You know my heart. For better, or for worse, I’ve prayed  that you’d give me your heart for people. Well, Lord, my heart is shattered. Feels crushed sometimes. As the God who has arms big and strong enough that hold the entire universe, I believe you understand my heartbreak –  perhaps better than I do myself. Our nation needs more hope. 

I come to you on behalf of my friends John and Joe –  whom I know that you know well, and I ask for your governing protection. This weekend will be the beginning of a new era in Birmingham. This weekend, I pray your hand lead and guide them as Radical Hope launches. 

Radical Hope. God, I know that is inspired directly by your heart. 

I pray that hope, radical hope, spreads like wildfire –  through your church, through their city, and that (through you) they have a footprint on our world, one unable to be ignored. 

May those who are hurting, hungry,and today thirsty come to know you through  this place. May they share messy grace and radical hope with all your children. 

May all human beings walking through their doors be able to connect with your love. May they know they are loved exactly where they are –  no strings attached. Gay or straight, pink or blue, God I know you’ll love them as the beautiful human beings they are. May they feel accepted and especially loved for who they are, where they are, and whomever they’re with. 

My prayer is that the churched and unchurched alike can come together and be. Just be. May the stereotypical view of Christians and the church be shattered as people find hope here. Lord, may your will be done. May humanity be touched by the willingness of this new body to speak and share your heart with a broken world. God, be with them this weekend as this new era of radical hope, messy grace and unconditional love is ushered into this city and beyond. Thank you for this and everything I’ve forgotten. I love you. 

When The Beauty Is The Darkness

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The beauty, in this picture, is found in the dark places.

It is no secret that my life, sometimes, seems to be shrouded with darkness. Pick a place, look that direction, and you’ll see some form of lingering darkness. It is what happens during those dark moments – it is what we focus on – that makes or breaks the situation. Not all darkness, even if it shrouds the beauty, is a bad thing. This is the mindset I aim to challenge. Please, stay with me for a moment.

Let’s take the picture above. I left it completely untouched, and wanted to share just exactly as it came out of my camera. Yes, the photographer in me wants to fix it up.  But, the human being in me wants you to see the natural beauty. Take a peek again at the picture. What do you see? I see the trees. I also see a (not so blue, considering storming) sky. The whole thing is beautiful. But, what makes it beautiful? For me, it’s symbolic in a pretty neat way.

To me, the beauty is nature. The trees. But, in this specific picture is the stark difference between the light and the dark. The light wouldn’t be visible in the same way without the dark. But, the beauty truly is found in the dark parts of this photograph. The beauty is the darkness. The trees aren’t actual darkness. They are the perceived beauty that you see and feel when looking at this picture.

Isn’t that actually kinda indicative of life too? I have another example. I want to share the story of an incredible person.

This person is me. This person is you.  This person is the girl down the table that you look down on because she has less than you. This is the boy you choose to think is just fat and uncaring. This person is you. This person is me.

There is a person (the fictional person/people mentioned above) who has come to mean a great deal to me. This person struggles with the pain of life. This person sees life in terrifying shades of muted color much of the time. Anxiety dictates the greater portion of reality, while the noise of life dictates the rest. This person fails to see beauty in things. They look beyond the beauty to the mess. I’ll reiterate that the mess can sometimes (Okay, most ALL times) hurt and have it’s own pain attached, but without the mess, you can’t feel or understand the beauty the same way.

But, back to this aforementioned friend. This person sees pain and darkness – and, in all fairness, other people who see this person see that same pain because they wear their emotions freely. They allow the world to see them, and it frightens them. They allow the vulnerability of transparency because they don’t have the strength to do otherwise. The beautiful thing, though? This person is the very definition of beauty. (Said definition specifically: a beautiful or pleasing thing or person, in particular)  This person is surrounded by darkness, by fear and anxiety. But this same person uses that to reach out and offer life giving grace to others. This person allows their own pain to pierce through the darkness and shine the light of friendship and encouragement when desperately needed in other people. They never seem to be able to see their own beauty, but can find beauty in just about anything. They can have faith in other people. When the tables are turned, they struggle to see the same beauty looking back from the face in the mirror.

Why is this, you ask? If I had that answer, I’d be less like that person. But, that person is me. That person is you. That person is my best friend. That person is the kid down the table, or the overweight person considering suicide. That person is me. And that person is you. Deny it if you will. But, if you haven’t ever experienced this darkness, good on ya. Brace yourself. It may be coming. However, if you do have even the iota of a clue what I’m referring to – or if you have this person in your life, let me share a bit about that for a second.

Love them. Give them space. Surround them. Hold them when they can’t stand on their own. Let them know that when they fail in their own head, it doesn’t make them a failure at life. Let them know you care. Show them that you love them. How do you do this? Ask them how they’re feeling. Care about their reply, and don’t just take it at face value. Give a shit enough to actually care. To actually dig deeper when it’s warranted. You’ll know. Allow yourself to be vulnerable to show them they aren’t alone. Biggest thing though – when the tables are turned, allow the same into your life.  Give yourself the chance to soak in that same love and joy.

Back to beauty, though.

In many ways, beauty is perception. If you have a pristine condition – no mess. Nothing dirty…you do have beauty. However, if you have to clean up a mess – if you have broken pieces to put back together, or if you have to make the situation pristine (again?) — I can guarantee with nearly 100% accuracy that you will appreciate and not take for granted the beauty…or the darkness you had to walk through to get there.

I guess the point that I’m recognizing is the desperate (vital) need to see the beauty in the darkness. Even taking that a step further, seeing the darkness AS the beauty.  Look back at the picture. To me, the darkness creates the picture. Beauty is derived from the dark places. Just keep that in the back of your mind. Recognize that the very things that make your situation dark, will be very thing others may draw strength from, and see as a thing of true beauty.  Instead of crumbling under the weight of the darkness, I urge you to allow that to be a stumbling block transformed into a stepping stone, a catalyst to see life and your surroundings differently.

Does that erase the pain of and from inside the dark places? No. Not so much. Does it make it bearable? It does. It is about finding beautiful things when nothing else is beautiful.  It’s about seeing and allowing joy to break through the darkness and create happy in the midst anyway. It allows joy.  It is a catalyst to propel you away from the pain of the dark, and into the arms of the beauty that coexists in it.

Allow the warmth to hold you.  Allow love to BE you. That’s another post upcoming. Love. So much of life is missed because we can’t figure out how to love.  Stay tuned…

When A Rape Turned Home Invasion Saved My Life (Guest Post) 

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This is an anonymous guest post. This is a guest post, and very few details have been altered – only to ensure her anonymity, protection and continued safety and freedom. 

Rape. Take a closer look at this picture. A mere 10 days after rape, you’ll see a positive pregnancy test, a crying eye, and embryonic growth and yolk sac. This picture shows that.

I cannot cope with reality. Plain and simple. It’s no secret that my significant other and I aren’t close these days. No one can tell me this excuses rape. 

Our lack of intimacy does not afford him the freedom of violently taking what was not, and never will be again, his. If you don’t think rape can happen inside a relationship, established home, marriage, etc, then you are part of the problem. 

As I lay on the cold, wooden floor, I could still feel the burn of being restrains. As I lay there, begging for escape somehow – asking God to allow me to perish, mysuddenly terrified daughter walked in the door. 

Without hesitation, she ran to me. Fiercely protective, this one. After a long talk, and at the request of a friend, 911 was called. Trembling and afraid, I opened the door. 

Compassion. 

Some of those exact moments remain a blur. And I’m not complaining. But I recall completely losing my shit at the ability to feel safe. Someone was there. For me. But not to hurt me. They offered no judgment, only compassion. 

Even if I wanted to turn very small and scurry away, I couldn’t have. Even if I didn’t press charges, my body forced the “this is getting investigated” scenario. Am ambulance was summoned, as I nearly passed out. From my cold, wooden floor to a cold hospital gurney, I became important enough to listen to. Important enough to fix. 

I did survive, but in those moments, living was not a desire. Yes, I wanted to die. 

Eventually, with my personal effects placed nicely in the newly crumpled brown super market bag,  I went back home. Home. It wasn’t a safe place anymore. I ached to not exist. 

As a routine follow up, I had wounds checked, blood and urine tested, and was then sent on my merry way. It was not until the following day, that I got a phone call that rocked my world.

My doctor needed me to come in (ironically on Labor Day) so he could further break my heart. It was one of the moments where it was hard to not kill the messenger. 

Your testing is back. (no dip!) I have some complicated news. You have hcg levels consistent with early pregnancy. (no amount of doctor speak could have lessened the new reality about to kick me in the stomach and steal the breath from my lungs. 

How did I respond to the news that I’m now a human incubator? Like a monster. I felt less than human. Broken beyond repair. I am carrying within my body, the product of rape. I fell apart. Crumbled into pieces. 

As I sat, now in a little ball – think crying in the fetal position, I could only think of how violently this little growing life had invaded mine. 

While I cannot fathom bringing a child into this world, I can comprehend, even less, taking his or her life. I will not stop a beating heart. But i also see myself as the world’s biggest asshole for not wanting this little growing life. 

The very next day, I was asked to come for imaging. Every other time I’ve seen a prenatal ultrasound, it invoked excitement. (and I have seen hundreds in my line of work.) But seeing my own, it terrified me. 

How then does this whole thing having happened play a part in saving my life? Simple. As much as I don’t want to be a human incubator under these circumstances, I do want give this child a fighting chance. I cannot die because someone, literally, relies on me to live. 

Yes, I do have family and friends. I remain alive for them because I know I’m needed or wanted, but this – this is different. 

Yes I’m terrified of this future, but strangely at a peaceful place where a trusted friend reminded me that beauty can and will somehow come from this. I can’t believe her right now, but I’ll borrow faith, and  the outstretched hand of others – that hand which will help me stand when I can’t even feel the solid ground beneath my feet. 

When Missing My Baby Turns Into A Conversation On Faith, And Includes God Being Called An Asshole

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This piece appeared just moments ago on my daughters prayer and support (Facebook) page.

This post is going to be one of my birthday gifts to myself. I give myself the strength that surrounds not walking alone – the strength of community. So, I can guess this will probably be a bit long. (What’s new, right!?)  But, today is my birthday (the 24th of August) and this will be an attempt to be real, but also infuse joy. 
Wow. So, it’s been a few weeks since I’ve been able to post. For a chunk of the time, I was sick. But, the rest is the time I was a combination of brokenhearted and simply trying to survive. I know each of you understand, to a degree, that this is the most crazy difficult thing I’ve ever walked through. Excruciating may begin to describe it. 
This last month or so, I’ve been hurting, but also finding myself again. I’m not going to lie – it’s been tough. Watching her take her final breath here on earth was so hard, but it’s the living without her physically here that’s killing me. 😢 
Yes, the good thing is that she had an incrediblly beautiful and special seven years of a life, well lived. She truly leaves a legacy of love – surrounded by incredible joy – hugs and smiles. #RememberTheLove 
I shared so many photo collages because they are beautiful. She is beautiful. These are a small fraction of the memories I fondly remember. In time, I will share more. Many more. 
She may not be here in the flesh, but she is EVERYWHERE. I see her at every turn. As we do things as a family, or I do things she and I used to do – I pause, remembering fondly, those things — but also with a shattered heart, because no parent should have to utter the words “she would have liked this… we had so much fun, etc.” Past tense. That just sucks. No real better way to explain it. 
Oh, I have to say something while it’s on my heart and mind. Let me put a theory to rest. Some people feel like they shouldn’t talk about Janet, reminisce about her life, even talk about her death, or share the thoughts, curiosities, etc with me.  THIS COULDN’T POSSIBLY BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!  PLEASE don’t EVER stop. I may be sad, bit you talking about my baby didn’t make me that way. Her dying wins that trophy. So, please – if you’re sad and miss her, tell me. I’d you are curious how tall she’d be, or how she’d be doing in school, share that with me. If you want too smile and laugh, remembering beautiful moments, do that with me too. I guess all I’m saying is that anything related to my daughter – don’t EVER hesitate to bring up. 
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been on a “me finding” journey. This also includes my faith. If you’ve followed me, or this page for any length of time, then you know that my faith has been my rock – a source of strength when it seems The World is falling apart. Well, that hasn’t changed. It’s more like its evolved. 
About me faith, I found I had the need to own my faith – for it to be able to stand on its own two feet. I knew my faith, and what I believed – but if asked why on certain topics, I realized I had no idea. Why did I believe the way I did? Your guess was as good as mine. When I realized this, I decided this needed to change. So, I’ve been digging deeper, and seeking answers. No longer am I able to follow faith blindly. 
While this is all going on, I’ve been evaluating my feelings and thoughts on faith in general, but also specifically on God. I’m not going to lie here either. There are days I’d kinda rather punch Him in the face. I’ve seen Him as an asshole at times too. Don’t get me wrong. He’s still good. He’s still in control. He’s truly a good, good Father – even when it doesn’t feel like it. See, the “I don’t like God thing” is a personal thing. It happens when I feel like His inaction spoke more volumes than His action did. NO, I do NOT think God GAVE her cancer, or couldn’t be bothered to lift a finger as she fought and then died – but He didn’t. 
What I want you to hear is that I still had the faith I always did, but parts have evolved. Other parts I’m human enough to say I feel were flawed theology. I’m also transparent enough to say I don’t always like God, I do question Him, BUT THAT’S OKAY.  I’ve learned that it’s vital that I FEEL these things. I have to feel them before I can move past them, or whatever the situation dictates. See, I often feel like I disappoint God. However, this is false. This happens when we try to attach human emotions to a God that isn’t human. 
Thankfully, His love for each and every one of us is never ending, and unfailing. 
So, as you can see, I’ve been talking since combination of baby steps mixed with leaps and jumps towards finding myself again, and establishing who I am as a wife, mom, friend, and Christ follower. It’s kinda like a roller coaster. So many ups, downs, twists, turns, hands up in the air screaming – but with hint of joy etched on most faces – or perhaps hidden a little deeper. 
Right now, I hurt but I love. I cry but I smile. My heart is shattered, but the fractured and broken places are where healing is happening, and more light can shine through. I fall, but I pick myself back up – often with the help of friends. I miss my baby girl, but I had 7 incredible years with her here by my side. I often don’t know who I am, or where to turn – but my God doesn’t need a roadmap to find me. Janet us physically gone, but she is everywhere. 
Dear goodness, apologies on the length this has become! I just miss you guys so much. I won’t guarantee that I’ll post every day or any of that, but I will tell you that I’m happy that I feel strong enough to BE back. Thank you for loving Janet, me  and our whole family. For better or worse, we’re figuring out how to do life in the midst of great pain. 
So, for those of you still reading, thank you. Sincerely, my heart has so much gratitude. Please and thank you in advance for continued love, support and prayer. I’m beyond grateful.