Tuesday, March 4, 2014

March Fourth...

Today would have been Steve and my 19th wedding anniversary.  Sadly, today I am remembering and spending this day without Steve.  Thankfully and gratefully Brent came in from Austin to spend the night last night and the day today.  Brooke and the children will join us for a day of being together.

Nineteen years ago today, all of our family's lives were changed for the better because of this amazing marriage.  I wrote a Caring Bridge entry 5 years ago when Steve was early in his cancer treatment.  I thought I would repeat my words here today, I think it is proof that even though life isn't always what we would like it to be we must continue to March Forth and find God's blessings as we walk along life's journey.

Here are my words from 5 years ago.  Little did any of us know the sadness we would face nor the happiness we would encounter in these 5 years.

 March Fourth…

the only day of the year that gives a command.  My friend, Adelle (should know, as this is her birthday) gave us this ‘“sage” bit of wisdom 14 years ago when Steve & I married!
I looked up the definition of march forth: “to walk with a measured tread or walk with determination--from a starting point, forward.”
I believe that Steve & I have following this command in our marriage for the last 14 years.  In a way, it has become our watchword without our even being aware of it.
March Forth--In bringing 2 teenage children into a new marriage with new surroundings, we were a united determined force.  Making sure Brent & Brooke’s lives could be as successful and settled as possible.  At times it took some doing, but I think we helped guide and nurture two pretty terrific people.
March Forth--What fun it was for Steve to be able to retire early.  We made our starting point right here at home and have been fortunate enough to travel so many wonderful places.  We have laughed and played and enjoyed ourselves throughout some of the most beautiful spots in this country & Europe.  During this time we were fortunate enough to design and build a wonderful new home and even had fun during the building process!  Seven years later we consider Jerry Hawkins, our builder, a close friend. 
March Forth--Sadly, there were times when our steps became so heavy, we felt our legs were tied with sandbags and shoes filled with lead as we walked with friends or family through difficult and trying times.  Steve & I certainly walked hand-in-hand, often needing to lean completely on one another as we treaded with determination through the difficult failing health and eventual deaths of 3 of our parents.  I am so thankful we had each other to march through those valleys together.  
March Forth--We really skipped with delight in being a part of the marriage of David & Kim, then Brooke & Jared.  What would Brooke have done without Steve, I mean, “Franc-the-wedding-planner”?  It has been a pleasure to have our family grow with the addition of the children’s spouses.
March Forth--Again, we really danced with joy the day each of the 4 of our grandchildren were born.  Happily we watch their measured determination as they reach new milestones in their little lives.
March Forth--As we celebrate 14 wonderful years!   It sounds trite to say these 14 years have flown by, yet I can’t really remember what life was like without Steve.  We are truly blessed to be celebrating 14 of some of our best years.   And we will continue to march fourth, from this point forward ,with great determination into an unknown future, hand-in-hand with a known God.  We are so thankful that we have each other and each of you to help us as we tread our way through this course of our lives.

March Fourth with love,

Judges 5:21 says, ”...Oh my soul, march on, be strong!”