Friday, November 02, 2007

An update of sorts...

Two months have now passed since Amy passed away, and almost one year since her transplant. I can't say that as time's passed things have gotten any easier. I miss her more and more each day. In fact, some of these last couple of weeks have been amongst the hardest as things are finally settling down and the reality of her passing is settling in. I lost my best friend, my beloved, and nothing can, nor do I want anything to, replace, her. Gary continually asks about her or to see her, and still expects certain tasks and roles to filled by her and sometimes seems confused or upset when its not Amy. He loves looking at her pictures and had me play a full years worth of home videos of her for him the other day. I enjoy working on her book, reading her writings almost makes it seem as though she is still right here -- I can hear her voice as I read her words. Speaking of the book, I'm making decent progress. I've finished about 8 chapters (of a tentative 30 or so), and have a couple of strong leads on a publisher. That being said, this is still a lengthy process and I expect it to take close to a year yet before it is finished.

To answer the recent question, I'm sure we would have done it all over again much the same. There may have been a few differences here and there, but overall, I'm sure we would have proceeded just the same. Every moment we got to spend together was special. We had some of our best conversations in those last few days and had some great memories in those last few weeks that I wouldn't trade for anything. Amy knew more than anyone the pain and suffering she was enduring, and also more than anyone, she knew what kind of hell a second transplant would be. Yet, she longed for and looked forward to it as she knew it provided hope. Hope that she might be cured, but also hope that she may be able to survive just long enough that another treatment that might cure her would come available. Hope that she might be more than just someone in the photos for Gary to look at, but someone who actually filled his memories.

And, like Betony asked a few weeks ago, I figured a couple of pictures of Amy before her diagnosis and treatment would be a good idea, as well as a picture of the mirror I had made from our bathroom mirror where she wrote a message to me before she went into the hospital the last time, so enjoy!




61 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for updating - we miss her too...

Leigh said...

Thank you for the update Brandon. Dallas and I will continue to pray for you and Gary. I hear Bob Kauflin's song "In the Valley," and it speaks so clearly for what you are going through.

Lord, let Brandon and Gary find your Grace in the valley. Let them find Your joy, and let them know that You are near with every breath they breathe. Please use this valley to make them more like You.

In Christ's unfailing and unending Love,
Leigh and Dallas Taylor

Yvonne said...

Thanks for the update.
You are thought of often.
Bless Gary's little soul.
I sit here in tears for him
as I read your post about him wanting to see her....

gracie said...

Thank you... her smile reminds me of her words. Your journey continues... wishing you all the strength, peace and love you need.

Colleen said...

Loving you all and missing her too.

God bless you!
The Moeller Family

Christy said...

Brandon, Thank you for the update. Thinking of you and Gary with warmth and prayer.

Carrie said...

Thank you for thinking of us, we're thinking of you.

Mel's Mom said...

Thank you for the update. Your names continue on my prayer list.

April said...

I still come back quite frequently. I am so thankful that you continue to update every now and then.

The pictures of Amy, pre-diagnosis, really don't look much different than the Amy who sat with a much more grown Gary not long ago. Her smile was the same gorgeous smile.

I wish I had known Amy more than what this site could allow. But on the other hand, I do feel I knew her. I think of her every day and what she left us all with - an incredible sense of faith and courage and determination and love and peace that only comes through Christ.

I can't wait for your book, Brandon. Like all of us, I miss your Amy, too.

Anonymous said...

Brandon-Thank you for updating! I know how incrediby hard it is to lose a spouse. Know you are still in my thoughts and prayers daily. No matter what picture I saw of Amy, it was a picture of beauty and strength. I am looking forward to being able to purchase her book someday.

Blessings,

Shari

Heather said...

Thank you for such a touching update. I continue to keep her link on my blog. She was and continues to be a source of encouragement. Praying for you and Gary-Heather

Dunn Family said...

Thank you for your update. I know this must be so hard and I know if I lost my husband, nothing could ever replace him. We continue to pray for you and little Gary every day. Thank you for sharing Amy's pictures. She was a beautiful woman, both inside and out.
In Christ,
Gina Dunn

betony said...

Brandon thanks so much. What beautiful pictures, especially the one of her & Gary. I agree with a previous poster, though - her spirit shone through so strongly that there is little difference from the other pictures.
I can't even imagine what you must be going through each day. I pray that your work on the book helps you to find some healing. You and Gary remain in my daily thoughts & prayers

ALOE said...

Thankyou for the update. I'm sure life must be very difficult for you just now. I was listening to this Metrical Psalm in the car earlier, and it seemed appropriate,
"What time my hearat is overwhelmed, and in perplexity, Do thou me lead unto the Tock, that higher is than I" Psalm 61

ALOE said...

sorry, should have checked spelling before posting!

"What time my heart is overwhelmed, and in perplexity, Do thou me lead unto the Rock that higher is than I"

Carey said...

Thanks for the update. Your Amy was beautiful, inside and out. I love the mirror you had made. Good luck with the book.

Kim said...

Brandon,

Please know I am praying for you still. I'm also praying for Gary and the needs he has as you decide what to do about work and all...he needs you more than ever right now, so that must be a hard thing to leave him with someone.

The book sounds wonderful and I can not wait to read it and buy copies for my friends and family...there is just something very special about Amy and her life lived to glorify God that touches people deep in the soul...I think mainly because most of us are so fearful of that kind of suffering...and Amy was such an example of God's faithfulness in her life. I wish things could have been different for her and you...but, God does have His plans and purposes that we don't understand. Holding onto Him through this is about all you can do...trusting in the One who loves you so much He gave His only son, so you could live and Amy could live on. One day, because of Christ, you 2 will be reunited to worship God forever together. That is true victory in Christ.

I will continue praying for you.

Kim

Rachel D said...

Thanks, Brandon.

Amanda said...

What precious pictures. Thank you for sharing your lives with us. May God bless you profoundly this year.

Anonymous said...

You and Gary are still in our prayers...God comfort and keep you.

Denise

Jennifer in CA said...

Lord Jesus

I ask that you wrap your loving arms of comfort around Brandon, that you lift him up and carry him through each and every day with eagles wings, that you send people to comfort him along his journey, that you reveal to him Your Glory through this pain. Lord I ask that you show him gentleness and mercy with each and every moment of the day, that you keeps his good memories fresh and crisp for him to share with their child. That you take that pain from him Lord, remove it from him, fill him with your joy and peace that passes all understanding. In Jesus' name'
Amen
<><
Jennifer

Pam said...

Your Amy loved you well and with her whole heart. What a wonderful thing:)

Lacey said...

I still think of her so often. Praying.

Lacey - AL

angela said...

brandon, i just said a prayer for you and gary. i prayed that the Lord would surround you with his tangible love and strength, peace and hope and comfort. thanks for the update, i look forward to your updates.

in Christ,

Angela

Anonymous said...

Brandon: Thank you for answering my question. I hope you will be able to find solace in the work you are doing with “Amy’s Journey”. You and Gary have been given a huge amount of “Life’s Lessons” to deal with at such an early age. I love what you did with the message Amy left you on the mirror. She knew!

I want to share with you something that I hope you will find comforting. I have spent considerable time over the past years reading about death and dying and the process that is involved and I believe that we do not die alone. Even if there is no one in our room.

Many fear death; but we only fear what we don't understand. The body is just a dwelling place for the soul. The soul will express itself through our body while we are on this earthly journey. In the light of eternity our life here on earth is a short one. Some shorter than others. Therefore death is only the physical body; what constitutes the real "YOU," "I," "We," goes right on living. Dying means only that we discard our body the way we cast aside an old worn-out coat, or step from one room into another. In Ecclesiastes 12:7 we read; "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was; and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it."

It says in John 16:22 "As for you - if you should miss me-- I am not really gone, just transformed, freed from the frail cloak, my physical body. But I shall see you again and your heart will rejoice." Our bodies become worn and frail. Our loved ones will always be with us. They will always watch over us. If we listen we will be able to hear them.

May our Heavenly Father give us the peace that comes with understanding; bless us, guide us, and protect us, and keep us in His care-- until we all meet again.

Anonymous said...

You and your whole family are still in my prayers.
Paula Marti

Linds said...

Thanks for posting an update, Brandon....you and Gary are still in my prayers. It takes a long time to heal. Just don't try to rush the process. Be gentle with yourself.I still have very "wobbly" times, 16 months on, and have learnt to accept that it is part of the healing. Tough stuff. But God leads the way out of this dark place.

Monica C. said...

You have my heartfelt prayers. Please know that Amy's spirit lives on in so many of our lives. God bless,

Overwhelmed! said...

Brandon,

I'm thankful to get an update on how you and Gary are doing. Please know that you remain in my prayers!

Thank you for sharing pictures of Amy.

Pamela said...

I saw you light up on bloglines - and my heart did, too.

DandelionSeeds said...

Praying for you and lifting You up today. May you find strength in Him. I'm so sorry for your loss...

Tiffany said...

Brandon,
Thanks for posting pictures! It is good to see her again! You are still in our prayers out here in AZ!
Tiffany Hansen

Episcopollyanna said...

Thank you for sharing the pictures, Brandon. You and Gary are in my prayers. I lost my first husband very suddenly; the pain is horrible. Wishing you peace.

The Miller's said...

Dear Brandon,
This is my first visit to your site. I linked here through someone else's. I have spent the last hour reading (&crying through)some of your journey including your wife's first post. She wrote some of the words to the song "Blessed be your name, on a road marked with suffering, though there is pain in the offering, blessed be your name". We sang that song at my son's funeral in March of this year. We have, as you, become a grieving-but-moving-on family this year. Tell Gary Happy 2nd Birthday! I know that is going to be hard day for all of you--as are all of these "firsts" that we have to face without our loved ones. May God fill the deep void in your life!!

gold said...

I am praying for you.

Anonymous said...

Brandon, Thankyou so much for the update. I check every so often and when I do I am reminded to pray for you and Gary.

God Bless you

Lois

Lisa said...

Brandon -

Amy touched so many of us with her faith, hope, and compassion.

May God continue to bless you with His presence as you continue to bring together the legacy Amy shared with us.

Jessica said...

Beautiful Photos. Thanks for updating and sharing them with us. Still looking forward to the book. :)

Julie's Jewels said...

This post blessed my heart as I still pray for you and Gary. I know it can't be easy for any of you. Praise the Lord for His grace and strength to get you through each day. I love the pictures...thank you for sharing them with us.

Wendy said...

Came here missing Amy today.
Thanks for updating here. I look forward to the book.

anne said...

Still thinking of all of you and praying for you, too.

Anne

Sun said...

I will be in prayer for you and your precious son! This blog has come to mean so much to me - I cannot wait to read the book! Thank you so much for letting God use you all SO hugely. Sunshine

Anonymous said...

I think of you and Gary each day...some days just the thought of you two without Amy makes me sob and I hurt for you both. Your Gary and my Jeremiah are 3 months apart and I do hold Jeremiah much closer to me each day and then cry for Gary. I always pray for God to please intervene in Gary's life, that God would provide for his emotional loss and confusion. My heart is so sad for your little boy, I know that is because I am a mother of three and raising my babies is to me as I know it was for Amy. I won't stop praying for you and Gary. I wanted to pass this on to you, my sister-in-law lost her husband in a tragic accident after being married for 1year and 3 weeks, they had a 7 week old boy that was left behind. It has been 8 years now and my best advice is mourn, mourn whenever you need to, God even tells us this exact thing, there is a time to mourn. I will not stop praying, God be with you and comfort you.
With much prayers
April Martin

Paulette said...

Brandon and Gary,
I wanted to come by and say that I pray for you today on this Thanksgiving day as you move through this day without Amy. I am still so sad for your loss and I know it will be especially hard this season for all of you. I loved Amy, and I do pray for you both today.
Blessings to you

Episcopollyanna said...

Remembering you in prayer today.

Linds said...

Brandon and Gary - I have been thinking of you both this past holiday time, and praying that your Thanksgiving will be filled with joyful memories and love.

The first of everything is always hard. You remain in my prayers.

Marc and Charity said...

I am praying for you and Gary. The pictures are precious, thank you for sharing them with us.

Angela said...

Brandon, just wanted to know that I've been praying for you and your family during the holidays as I can imagine it will be difficult without Amy around. My prayer is that the Lord would comfort you and bring peace to hearts this Christmas season!

Merry Christmas blessings...

angela

mel said...

You have been, and will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers. I know this is a tough time of year, so I am praying God gives you and me both the strength to continue.

Anonymous said...

Just thinking of you and praying for you all as Christmas approaches. May love surround you and hope lift you and memories grow to comfort you someday.

Anonymous said...

Just thinking of you and Gary each day and crying out for God's huge love to engulp you both. With my heart, and prayers.
April Martin

Mummymac said...

Be assured of my prayers for you and your little man at this time.

A reader from Northern Ireland.

Leigh said...

My family is thinking about you and praying for you today. Merry Christmas, Brandon and Gary! Rejoice in the Lord and his goodness today! How wonderful that he sent his Son, so that we might have life.

God Bless!
Leigh

Anonymous said...

Brandon and Gary,

We continue in prayer for you that you may be comforted and strengthened in your lives in the Lord Jesus. We pray you will have wisdom and guidance as you proceed with the decisions and actions needed.

By His Grace,

Don and Lilan

Erin said...

I found you through someone elses blog. Your family is beautiful. I love the mirror you had made. I am praying for you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Brandon: I just happened across your blog. I want you to know how so very sorry I am for you and little Gary and the loss of your beloved Amy.

My son was a bone marrow donor twice. I am on the National Bone Marrow Donor registry, as I hope everyone would be. I'm almost 59 and have only a year before I will be dropped from the list as the age limit is 60. I sit and pray daily that they will call me. It breaks my heart knowing that someone out there needs help. So I sit and wait. Join me in prayer that I will get that call and that I can add years to a loved one's life.

God bless you.

monicac2 said...

I was thinking about your family today, and of course, about Amy. You are all in my prayers!

Anonymous said...

Brandon- let me leave this note here for some readers may find this useful to save the life of leukemia patients. This is about Ayurveda center in India where patients get sustainable remission with out side effects.
www.jamesvaidyanhealing.com

weavermom said...

Thinking of you and Gary and all the rest of Amy's family today. Just wanted to let you know that I still think of you guys!

Anonymous said...

You have not been forgotten!!

mamaredhead said...

Brandon, just checking in, praying God is granting you and Gary grace enough for today. I stumbled onto Amy's blog last year and have been forever changed - she left her mark on my life.