Sunday, October 25, 2009

random thoughts

Another week has passed. This one seemed to take a while, but I think it's because I'm looking forward to a lot of different things happening in the next few weeks.

I've definitely had my ups and downs this week. I've had visits with good friends talking about where my family has been and will be going. I've had a few cry-fests. I've had good moments. Dad and I did get back into the swing of things at work. And sometimes it does feel weird to stop and remember that you've lost something so dear just a few weeks ago. A lot of times I just think, what am I supposed to think??? What am I supposed to do? And I know no one has any answers to this - it's different for anyone, and it's normal to be going through a little bit of "lostness" in knowing how to react "right." Or more so, there's no "right" way to act.

Erik and I shared Brian's story today with some people. It was very interesting retelling it because it is a sad story naturally. I don't know how to relay the hope of the situation to people, but I'm kinda intrigued by how God will use this story in my life, Erik's life, my parents' lives, Cristina and the girls' lives. It's not the normal God-story, but it still is a God-story in every way. Physically things didn't go as we wanted or expected, but spiritually it got better and ended in a wave of glory that couldn't be denied. Again, mind-boggling since it's not what you expect, but I'm looking forward to see how it impacts people because I know somehow that story will impact people around the globe, especially as Erik, Cristina, and I look ahead to times of ministry somewhere down the road. And I don't need to worry about how the story impacts people; I just need to do my part and share my testimony of going through it when I can.

I don't know if I have a whole lot to say besides that so I'll end it.

Oh and if you want to hear a good song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGpPnE2Rt6A
Love it.

Blessings!

Monday, October 19, 2009

it's another day

Hi there! Today was a good day. Spent some time talking to a few different people who were checking in to see how we're doing. I think it's a good thing to spend time processing with people what we're feeling/going through, etc. So I enjoyed my times today remembering and acknowledging Brian and his God-filled life. Ahhh so many good things I could continue to say about his life.

Cristina and the girls are spending some time in Florida to recoup. My parents have a place down there (same place I got married!) and it's super peaceful and filled with good memories. Mom's helping them get settled and Dad and I are working a full week this week.

It's fun to think about what Brian's doing in heaven. I wonder if he has an assignment up there that will help the plan of God continue on this earth. Maybe he's doing something up there that will affect our lives down here. Maybe he's just hanging out with the prophets or his favorite Bible character (hmmm, I don't think I know who that is). Maybe he's just spending 24 hours a day worshiping. One day I'll get to join him and prepare to rule and reign with Jesus forever.

Now that's mind-boggling! I love the verse Pastor Mac quotes a lot: Eye hasn't seen, ear hasn't heard, neither has entered the heart of men the things that God has prepared for those who love them. (1 Cor. 2:9). Yes, God reveals it to us by His Spirit... but either way, it will still be more than we can ever ask or imagine! (Eph. 3:20)

As for me and my house, we're just hanging out right now. I cut Erik's hair last night (his initial idea) and it looks pretty decent, especially for a novice hair cutter! I absolutely love the new adventures Erik brings my way!

Hmmm I'm feeling rambly, and if you've ever received any voice messages from me, you know that means I can talk a reallllllly long time, usually about nothing, so for now, I'll simply sign off.

Blessings on your day!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

feeling refreshed

So I'm almost over this cold/cough - about at 95% now... not that you really needed to know that, but it's true. Last night, I had a girls' sleepover with some of my Bible study friends and they prayed over me for a long time. I just felt like I was getting filled up with God again and getting re-energized in my relationship with Him. I know where God is and how to find Him, but I've been needing a little help in heading there, just because I'm a little unsure. (With the past few months, even years, of dealing with Brian's sickness, it has been mentally exhausting.)

All that to say, I'm feeling refreshed and a lot more like myself spiritually and physically than I have in a long time.

It was kinda funny because I told the girls that I'd probably get up 8 or 8:30 a.m. since that's when I normally get up and I'm past the age where you sleep in until noon... but I woke up at 10:15 a.m. They were sweet to let me sleep in. I needed the rest.

Anyway, I'm going to work a little today to make up for some time I spent with my family earlier this week and then off to hang with more girlfriends. :) YAY!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

...

Hi there... life has continued. I finally feel like I'm getting over that nasty cough cold I had last week. Sorry for y'all who had to endure seeing me in that state! Thankfully I'm almost through.

My family and I have been reading through all the cards we've received - we still have a lot more to read. Thank you for all your kind words! I'm a "words person" (love language) so I just soak in the words on the card and let them encourage and minister to me. I definitely need it.

My parents are doing aok. My dad is super busy helping Cristina get situated - all the phone calls, arrangements, changes, etc. My mom is helping with the girls. They've been blessed with plenty of food (thank you!) to help them through the week, so cooking hasn't been needed. I know God's watching over all those little details to help make the transition to a new life easier.

Erik and I have some much needed time with our friends this weekend: I have an overnight with girlfriends and he'll be hunting. I'll get some alone time to catch up on house things as well. So all is going as well as it can be or even better since God is involved. We're trucking along.

I hope you all had safe travels back to your family locations if you came up for the funeral last week. Thanks for your prayers and support. I feel it and am extremely blessed that you're there helping me.

Well, I suppose I could ramble on, but then you'd get bored. :) Have a wonderful evening/morning/night/day... whatever moment it is you are living in right now.

Love~

Sunday, October 11, 2009

walking through the storm; coming back to life

So I'm a little gun shy about heading back into reality with a bunch of people. E and I wound up staying at home and watching LWCC online. (Trust me, we don't normally do that!!) Pastor Jim's message was about words and watching him quote scripture reminded me that the Lord truly is my shepherd and I shall not want because he makes me lie down in green pastures and leads me besides still waters. He restores my soul. And even though my family and I have been walking through the valley of the shadow of death, we don't have to fear because God is with us. And God comforts us when we are there.

I know some of it I'm still saying from my head since I know that is the route to turn. God keeps turning me back toward Him and He comforts me through this time.

If you happen to be on facebook and want to reminiscence about Brian, check out the group "Memories of Brian Baker." Robbie (Bri's best friend) started the group to help us all remember and heal. Here's my post. Maybe I'll post more later from my sister perspective. He was an absolutely wonderful brother. :)

"He and my mom and I were talking when we were teenagers about when we would get married. Brian, being the great brother that he is, said that if I didn't have a rock on my hand by the time I was 25, he'd make sure I'd have some "bling."

"Fast forward a number of years. It was January, I was 24, and just starting dating someone. Everyone started speculating if I would be single by the time my birthday (august) came around. We joked about the idea that if my boyfriend was interested in proposing, he'd have to do it in September, so I could get my diamonds from Bri. Thankfully (since I have a much better boy for me now) that boy left a few months later, and when summer came, I was single. So on July 4, my family was at the cabin and he gave me a pair of diamond earrings. :) I love them!"

Good guy, huh?

Anyway, off to finish watching the vikings. Maybe I'll make cookies too.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

a good day

Today was a good day. Erik had a morning for himself duck hunting with a friend, and I had a morning at home sleeping and reading. We spent the afternoon and evening at my parents with my grandparents, 2 uncles and aunt. It was wonderful.

Today I think presented a time to laugh, a few times of crying, a time to reminiscence, play games, and remember some normalcy for my family. And yes, if you happened to read Erik's facebook status, my mom, my aunt, and myself all learned how to clog today by watching youtube videos. Super funny! Then, we had a netti-pot party cleaning out our sinuses...

Doesn't every family have quirks like we do?

We laughed a lot today and just rested together watching football, eating food, and talking. Oh and we ended with a game of Taboo.

Not that you needed to know all that, but today was good for a smile.

Friday, October 9, 2009

saying goodbye

Just finished saying goodbye to Brian. It was a good day. Tough, but good. Lots of emotions, lots of family, lots of friends. Thank you to everyone who came and supported me, my parents, grandparents, and Cristina and the girls.

Now with the week over (which was a long week), I'm a little baffled on what to do. Supposed to get back to life, while remembering who Brian was to us. I know the new normal will come, but it's a little overwhelming trying to understand it now. For now, sleep is good. Food network is fun. And tomorrow is a day of rest. Nothing to plan. I can accomplish things at home (which always feels good to do). And then later in the day, I'll go spend time with my parents and an aunt and uncle who are staying in town to help us work through the next few days (Thank you UC and AM!!!)

Thanks again to all the family and friends who came with love. I know the support meant a lot for me; I can imagine my parents were blessed as well.

Off to walk the dog before bed. I love the fact that Tucker's just happy. As a dog, he has no idea what happened today (except that we left him a long time in the kennel!!!). He's just happy that we're home. I like that. Now, if only he can sit like Erik's asking him to do right now... :)

Love~

Thursday, October 8, 2009

me again

BHi. Just finished Brian's reviewal. Erik and I are exhausted. It's so surreal trying to comprehend what's going on. I do know I miss him and we realize he's gone for good (until heaven), but I guess it's the "how daily life is affected" that is a little overwhelming.

A high school friend came by who recently lost his dad. And an old friend from elementary school came by who lost her sister years ago. She's been through what I'm in the middle of; she suggested we connect on facebook, which I'm glad for. A sibling aches in a different way that a parent or a spouse or a friend. I'm looking forward to connecting with her. She made it through - I know I will too!

Thanks for your support. I'll say it over and over because it is really helpful. Seeing family helped remind me of normal and let me know my support system is bigger than I could have imagined.

Oh and I know normal will not be the old normal, but a new normal (I learned that from Adventures in Odyssey a long time ago!!!), and my family is strong. We'll find the balance of living after this.

Blessings

day 4 of our new life

I woke up thinking today and tomorrow will stink (reviewal/homegoing service). And they will. But they will also be good. I then started to think about all my family and friends who will be there to help and became extremely grateful. People who have been through something like this before mentioned the same thing to me: let yourself be surrounded by people to help.

It's comforting just to know people will be there with me. Some of my in-laws are traveling to be there for us from a long ways. That made me happy, because they're coming for me and then my parents. It's a huge blessing, and I'm very grateful.

It's also going to be good to spend time remembering his life, to remember who he was, to laugh and cry.

Anyway, all for now. I'm getting ready for the visitation tonight and having a rough time, but I'll be surrounded by people soon. God is good like that.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

day 2 after our new life

This stinks.

I hate waking up and knowing my big brother is gone. He was such an amazing man, it's awful that he got sick, especially when he seemed so healthy. At this point, I'm glad he's no longer in such pain, but I really miss the normalcy that came before all this junk started. It stinks knowing that our lives on this earth has been forever altered. I'm glad I'm a Christian and know he's with Jesus; I can't imagine life without that hope.

It always makes me smile when I think, Yeah Brian is now the lucky one.

It also gives a whole new meaning to tragedy and when you see other people walk through something similar to what you're walking through. Every situation is new and you never know quite what to say or do since there aren't adequate words, but it definitely gives you more understanding for hurt and pain.

Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers. Technology brings the support of family and friends to a whole new level. Please keep my parents and grandparents (I still have all four!) in your prayers. I can't imagine what they're going through with the injustice of the situation.

I'm honored to be Brian's sister, and proud of his legacy.

Monday, October 5, 2009

so we're all a little jealous

Brian beat us all home. :( He's finally free of pain and suffering. I am still in awe of how much of a fighter he was. He was such a man of God. Every year that went by, my respect for him grew as I realized how much he continued to grow in God. He never wavered in his faith or his trust of God. I don't know how many hundreds were touched by his life or from his fight of faith. The spiritual reports of God's presence touching people when they were with Brian were constant.

I get to write an obituary for him. Put my writing skills to good use. Yay!

It's hard to know what to think now. If I think about things too long, I start to realize how much life will be altered now that he's gone. Usually I have to stop that train of thought and just take it one day at a time.

Erik's with me; he's a good rock for me right now. All my friends are surrounding me; I'm so grateful. I am excited to veg out to the football game tonight. hehehe... sounds funny, but true.

Brian, you lived a good, amazing, God-filled, God-honoring life. I really wish you were here and healthy, but you're in a wonderful place. I wish we were all with you worshipping and dancing before Jesus, but I guess you'll get a head start. Meet up with you soon. We'll take good care of your girls and wife until then.

Love you.

Friday, October 2, 2009

a day in the life

A day in the life of being married to a hunter... I come home to two guys (Erik and a friend) walking around the house testing goose calls and duck calls to make sure they sound real. And the dog is running around slightly freaking out wondering what in the world is going on. Too bad it's predicted to be rainy and cold tomorrow. Tucker has been commissioned to stay home instead of going with.

Anything can happen. Such a wonderful thought.

The phrase that has been mentioned a lot in my family: the fat lady hasn't sung yet. And as Dad so eloquently put it, she may be on the backstage warming up, but she hasn't started her song. And praise God, anything can happen. I was talking with my mother-in-law about Bri's situation and she started recalling stories of others who have been "snatched from the grip of death." Brian very well could be the next testimony of that... God alone knows!

God is good. I'm ready for bed. Busy weekend ahead. Planning to visit Brian on Sunday with Erik. By then, I hope for a good report of strength returning to Brian!