Monthly Archive: March 2017

March 15, 2017

It’s nearly midnight and it just registered what day it is… the 15th. It’s been four months today since our Kayleigh went to heaven. It is with great joy that I can say today has been a great day. Unlike the previous, monthly, anniversaries- today didn’t cause me grief. What a beautiful blessing. As I sit and write tonight it feels like a tiny step has been taken toward healing.

Yet as I think about that, every step of every day is actually movement toward healing. Each twist and turn, good day and bad day, is another piece of the puzzle. And if you have ever done a puzzle, you know just how important each piece is. Nothing is worse than completing a puzzle only to find a hole where a single piece is missing. Yes, you may be looking at 999 pieces all neatly fitted together, but I promise, your eye will always be drawn to the hole. Sometimes it feels like life is 1,000 pieces scattered on a table. Jumbled up, upside down, looking like nothing. But time and patience, along with some determination will be rewarded with a beautiful, completed picture.

One of the most amazing thing I have witnessed these past few months is how God has brought each piece of the puzzle that we need to us at exactly the right moment. Not early and not late – perfect timing. I’ll admit, sometimes my type A personality would really like for the Lord to bring things in a little faster – just so I feel a little more comfortable. You know, a little cushion in case things go wrong. Hmmm…. if I trust the Lord completely, why do I need a cushion for anything?

That my friends is one of the lessons that Lord has been patiently teaching me. Each time he drops a piece into place I marvel at His goodness. And each time something happens that I don’t understand, I remind myself of that goodness and I am reassured that God has everything under control, even if I can’t see it.

Psalm 18:30
30 God’s way is perfect. All the Lord’s promises prove true. He is a shield for all who look to him for protection.

Psalm 31:14
14 But I am trusting you, O Lord, saying, “You are my God!”

Until tomorrow,

This picture was taken 10 months ago today. I can remember what she felt like in my arms and how much fun we had that day. Thank you Heather Mitchell!

March 14, 2017

My goodness what a day. Between work, the kids, softball, and the PFK Foundation, most nights I don’t sit down to unwind and write until after 11:00 at night. I keep thinking as things settle into our new normal that things will calm down, but so far they just keep rolling ahead at full speed.

Tonight, as I finally sat down and scrolled through Facebook my heart smiled a little. The petition to name the smallest softball field after Kayleigh was presented to our city council. Over 1,000 residents within the city limits had signed and that number grows by leaps and bounds if you add the signatures from everywhere. Amazingly, we don’t even really know most of the people that have decided that this needs to be done. These are people that heard our story, fell in love with our girl, and now want to do something to remember her. For all of you that have worked so hard, we thank you. Thank you for your time and energy, but most of all, thank you for not forgetting.

Since the founding of the Prayers For Kayleigh Foundation it seems like we have been on an extended cramming session, learning how different things work. I haven’t studied this hard since my senior year of college! What I am learning is that things take time. Just like the petitions that were presented tonight will have to go through the City Council and be voted on, so many things in life are a process – a process of growth and learning. That goes for marriages, raising children, careers, your spiritual walk, even grief. Every situation teaches us something for the future. I am learning that while I can see the past and the present, God can just as easily see the future. He knows how the story goes and he’s in it for the long haul, not a quick sprint. So, I’m learning to be patient and trust His timing in all things. I can say God’s track record is perfect, He’s never failed me, nor left me hanging. After 38 years of perfection He has easily earned my trust.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-4
1 For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. 2 A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. 3 A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up. 4 A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance.

Psalm 27:14
14 Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.

You cannot know how much we love you all.

Until tomorrow,

This is the ad above the scoreboard on the little field. We do know these precious people. Last year they put up a perfectly good, pretty, sign in their signature blue that would have lasted for years. Then I drive by the park one day last week and the blue sign is gone, replaced with this. They have stood by us from the very beginning, helped in more ways than I can say, been our sounding board, our friends, run errands, and allowed their shop to be the go to place for all things Kayleigh. I am so thankful the Lord brought them into our lives 6 years ago. All because our oldest girls played softball together. Isn’t God awesome? We love you Timmy and Heather Peebles.

March 13, 2017 – Kayleigh’s Birthday Bash Details Are Coming!

It’s not my birthday, thank you Jesus!! Today was an all around better day. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to see a Monday roll around. Cole was still feeling puny, work was hectic, and I had back to back to back meetings until 9:00 tonight but it was still a fantastic day. How thankful I am that God carried me through and blessed us all with a beautiful, new day.

One of the most exciting things is that the Kayleigh Birthday Bash details are all coming together. The 5k race is active and ready for you to sign up, and the concert tickets are being released Friday! Eek!!! No, I’m not spilling the line-up beans yet. Partly because we are still nailing down details. But so far we have 13 bands confirmed. Thirteen!!! And still more in the works. We’ve moved from a benefit concert on to a full blown music festival. It is truly amazing to watch God move all the pieces into place.

Having a God that loves, protects, and tends my broken heart is a blessing. Knowing that same God cares about every detail of my life, including Kayleigh’s birthday bash – well, that’s humbling. Who am I, that I would deserve even a moment of time from the Creator of the Universe? Yet, He gives me more than a moment. He gives me every moment of every day. He never leaves, he never gets tired, He never changes His mind – to Him, I am always loved, always cherished, always worth the time. What an amazing gift.

Matthew 10:29-32
29 What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. 30 And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

It’s not just me, God loves you that much too. And that is a gift worth treasuring!

Keep your eyes peeled for more updates. I’ll slip in little hints as we go along this week. It’s going to be SO much fun! If you’re ready to sign up for the race go to our site and click on the “race registration” button. You will be able to buy concert tickets through that page as well on Friday!

Until tomorrow,

March 12, 2017 – Happy Birthday… Thank God It’s Over!

March 12, 2017

We made it. Who would have thought a birthday would have been so difficult? To be quite honest, it was awful. The past few days have been the most difficult I personally have experienced in this journey. Harder than her diagnosis, more difficult than watching Kayleigh fight cancer, and somehow – more painful than watching her earthly spark slip away. These past few days, the magnitude of loss has been overwhelming.

I look back at this past Christmas, that should have been a difficult season, yet it wasn’t. I had time to prepare my heart. We put the Christmas tree up early for Kayleigh to enjoy, we shared gifts and Christmas carols, we made memories. So even though Christmas Day came and went without Baby Duck, I still had those memories tucked away. This milestone was different. It was just a birthday.

Just a birthday, but the devil had a field day. Cole was sick with the stomach bug so I couldn’t go to church. We had to cancel our small group because we didn’t want to give them his germs. Birthday lunch at my moms is usually a big, fun, family to do, but so many things came up from sickness to other obligations throughout the family that only a few could make it and it just wasn’t the same. While Cleaning out my laundry room I found a single Kayleigh flip flop – one of her favorites, as well as a pair of her shorts I loved. And while making room in the fridge I cleaned out all the way to the back where I found her special jello just waiting her her to ask for it. Yes, the devil worked over time. And today, he made some direct hits. I’ve shed more tears these past two days than I have through her entire journey.

If I stop my story there it is a sad thing indeed. If I stopped there you all would probably understand, because grief is hard and very rarely do we have the words we need to encourage one another. But that is not where my story ends. You see, I made it. Not under my own strength, but with the gift of strength from a God that loves me and carries me when I cannot carry myself. Has it been a sad day? Yes. But I know that which the devil intends for destruction, my God intends for good. I know that my hurt, pain and grief is going to help someone else. I know that by weathering this storm, I am being equipped for the future. I am learning. I am growing. And I am going to use this to share the love of my Savior and encourage anyone that God puts in my path.

I am so very thankful that this day is over. I am ready for bed and a new day tomorrow, but I am not going to bed with tears tonight. Tonight, I am going to bed with a smile. It’s a weary smile. One that has seen too many miles and too many tears, but it’s a smile none the less. Yes, the evil one tried, but he did not prevail. My God is bigger.

I love this verse from Genesis where Joseph is talking. He knew all the hardships in his life were for a purpose. We’re to ultimately save his family and their people. Just because we don’t understand God’s plan doesn’t mean it isn’t perfect.

Genesis 50:20
20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.

Isaiah 55:8-9
8 “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. 9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.

Until tomorrow,

March 11, 2017

Wow, Tim did a great job last night. I was so thankful he was willing to write. I just didn’t have anything in me. The closer my birthday gets the sadder I become. Not because it’s another year, a long time ago I remember my dad saying, “It’s better than the alternative,” and that’s always stuck with me. Yes, it’s another year, that’s a reason to be thankful. I just don’t want to have a birthday without Kayleigh.

This time last year I had no idea it would be my last birthday with her. I hadn’t started treasuring every moment. I have no pictures of my 37th birthday. I took it for granted. Just another birthday, I assumed we had many, many more. Tomorrow is my 38th birthday, and there is no Baby Duck. I have no idea why this is hitting me harder than anything so far, but it is breaking me.

Thankfully, I have a Savior that loves me, knows that I am hurting, and never leaves me. Psalm 147:3 – “He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.” I am learning just how true this verse is as I witness the Lord bind up my brokenness. I continue to hold fast to the knowledge that His plan is perfect. I trust that my grief is a part of His plan – somehow, God is going to use this for good. That does not mean that I like the pain, but knowing there is a purpose – that helps.

Romans 8:28
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

I would appreciate your prayers for peace. My prayer is that I will be able to enjoy my family. That I will always treasure my memories of Baby Duck, but that I will not be trapped in the past. I pray I will strive for the future God has planned for me and my family. Even as the tears are falling, I can still say my God is good, for that I will always be thankful.

Until tomorrow,

This picture was after my birthday last year because that jacket was a birthday present. We were one of the only ones to catch a fish that morning. It was fun.