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Easter 2017

Easter 2017

I love Easter the same way other people love Christmas. Easter is all about hope and joy and light and so often the outside world reflects that as we turn our back on the long, dark months of winter. Both the plants and our souls are revitalized. This year, Easter was especially tender. Lately, we’ve become more aware of our own mortality and our absolute need for our Savior. As we celebrated Easter our hearts swelled with gratitude for the resurrection that…

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Healing in the Desert

Healing in the Desert

I have always loved the desert. One sits down on a desert sand dune, sees nothing, hears nothing. Yet through the silence something throbs, and gleams…” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince Noel got three days of bereavement leave when his mom passed and we knew that we needed to use some of that time to decompress before heading back to regular life. Fortunately, Glenna’s funeral services were in close proximity to one of our favorite healing balms: red rock canyons. The day after…

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Glenna’s Funeral

Glenna’s Funeral

“I’ve come to understand that there’s a good deal of value in the ritual accompanying death. It’s hard to say good- bye and almost impossible to accomplish this alone and ritual is the railing we hold to, all of us together, that keeps us upright and connected until the worst is past.” – William Kent Krueger, Ordinary Grace I’ll admit my attitudes on the celebrations surrounding death used to be a bit callous. When I talked about my wishes for my…

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How is Your Heart?

How is Your Heart?

“Be kind because everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” – Ian MacLaren In the days leading up to Glenna’s transfer to inpatient hospice our kitchen sink backed up. The threads on the clean out in the basement were stripped making it impossible to open it and clear the pipe. This of course meant a trip to the home improvement store to acquire fun things like a reciprocating saw blade that can cut through cast iron. (For the record,…

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A Rough Landing

A Rough Landing

Noel describes the day he and his mom flew to Colorado as one of the worst days of his life. For most of it, I was generally unaware of how traumatizing it was. The evening their flight departed* they sent optimistic texts to the family – pictures of them next to a moose statue at the Anchorage airport and reassurances that they were feeling calm.  That night I wrote in my journal in anticipation of their arrival, “Buckle your seatbelt…

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The Backstory

The Backstory

Before I jump into any reflective posts I think I need to set up the backstory. In true Audrey fashion, I’ve been concise, maybe too concise about everything that has transpired. It was the Saturday of our church’s fall General Conference when we found out Glenna (Noel’s mom) had lung cancer. She called Noel in between sessions of talks intended to uplift us and told him she’d gone to the ER earlier in the week because of severe neck pain….

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Faith of a Child

Faith of a Child

Caring for my mother-in-law the last four months has been hard, but I’ve been so grateful to have my little family during all of it. We’ve leaned on each other and grown together. When I told the kids that their Grandma Glenna had passed away, I told them it was okay to feel sad. Ellen told me “I’m not sad; I’m happy.” When I asked why, she said, “Because she’s with Jesus and she’s going to be alive again.” I’m so grateful…

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Perhaps They Are Not Stars

Perhaps They Are Not Stars

Glenna/Mom told us she did her best sleep in the early morning hours. She spent the last six days in inpatient hospice care because her needs became too great to take care of in our home. Early this morning, she passed peacefully into the next world and is finally at rest. We will post funeral details when we have them.

Pinch Hitters

Pinch Hitters

Last week Noel’s aunt and cousin came to town to visit Glenna (Noel’s mom) and ease some of our burdens (as well as visit and dote on Glenna). We turned the baby monitor off for a week (we use it so we can hear her at night, when we’re in the basement, outside, etc) and took advantage of being able to leave the house at the same time. We were content to do exotic things like shop for pants and…

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What is Normal?

What is Normal?

October was one of those months where I would think, “Life can’t get any crazier than this” and then it would. My job as a middle school freelance educator came to an end at the beginning of the month and our family was ready to get back into a normal groove. Life had other plans though. Two big things happened in October: my mother-in-law was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer and my grandfather died. Those two things were pretty…

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