Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Latest on Mama Bear | Update 16

"... what if your healing comes through tears?"
laura story
I write today with heavy news.  The weight of glory appears to be upon my beautiful mother's back.  We received the results of her PET scan last week, and sadly the state of her body is not well.  To put it as my mom did: "...the good news is! I don't have to do chemo any more!". No more chemo.  No more treatments.  No more doctor's offices.  No more scans.  Home hospice arrangements are being made.  Heaven is closer than ever.  We are preparing to say goodbye in the way-too-near future.  (Of course, as my mom also said, "I'm still not opposed to miraculous healing!").

Please pray for us.  A few things that immediately come to mind:
- Pray that mom will be comfortable and pain-free as she finishes her days
- Pray for memories, time together, laughter, sacred hours as a family
- Pray for the hearts and minds of her little ones, especially.  (Lauren is still in elementary school, and Shannon and Dude are in middle school.) They are being so brave.  
- Pray for dad.  Lots of decisions. Lots of long nights. Lots of load ahead.
- Pray that somehow, though he is only seven months old, Rowdy will have supernatural and vivid memory of his grandma.
- This may seem silly, and I know each deep, labored breath is already numbered, but as we begin to face and imagine life without mom physically in it, we are broken knowing she won't be present for dozens and hundreds, if not thousands of 'big deals' for us.  The varsity boy's championship game is a big deal for our family. Dad, Tim, Caleb and I coach and Kevin is the senior starting point guard.  Assuming they make it through the play-offs, would you mind praying that mom will be there for the Championship?  Pray that Kevin could run to her at the end of the game, one last time?  The game is on Saturday, March 1 -- 45 days away.
- Pray for strong, real, nearly-touchable peace.

“The God who looked on you with joy when you were small and racing across His gift of green grass on His gift of feet beneath His gift of sky watched by His gift of a mother with His gift of love in His gift of her eyes, is the same God who will look on you as that race finally ends, delighted in every way.

Life is a story. Why do we die? Because we live. Why do we live? Because our Maker opened His mouth and began to tell a story.”
N.D. Wilson (Death by Living)

I wasn't there for the beginning of her story.  It turns out I wasn't even a part of *most* of her story.  But I will be there when our Maker says "It is finished, Suzanne." And while it may feel like the last chapters of her book are being written, we know better.  We know Chapter 2 is titled "Earth," and Chapter 3 is "Welcome Home." (Chapter 1 is "The Artist's Imagination" -- the part where He casts the roles, predestines the characters, ordains their plot line.) We know this story has no 'The End.'. We're crying and moaning over here in Chapter Two.  But someday, in Chapter 433,782, we'll only talk about the Times of Tears, for they will be no more. Forever, and ever, and ever, and on.

Thank you for the continued love, the constant support, the precious prayers.  It's a bit of heaven-on-earth to be the recipient of rallying care. Thank you. (And in mama bear's honor, go snuggle any one you love even if you have lots to get done today.)

Ps. Those interested in specific ways to help can contact Tracy: 301.418.2518 |


  1. Praying for all of you!!!! Love to you're family and hugs.

  2. Praying for all of you!!! My heart breaks for you. Asking God for peace, strength, comfort, lots of memories and miracles!!

    Love you.

  3. My heart aches for all of you. How I wish I could give Sue some of my years! I've had more than I could have imagined. Wishing you peace and love.

  4. Kristen, thanks for letting us know even though it has to be the hardest thing to write. I am praying for comfort and healing both and that you all get to be at the championships.

  5. Oh Kristen... My heart is breaking for family. But there is a big part of me that is happy and rejoicing for your mom. She is on her way to a healed body. To a place far greater than our imagination could ever dream. To a place of rest, and peace, while sitting at the feet of our Maker. May your mama bear exit this broken world in comfort, surrounded by those nearest and dearest. May your family bottle up the memories in their hearts, never forgetting the unforgettable moments (and the forgettable, silly, everyday moments too). May His peace surround you all like a warm blanket fresh out of the dryer.
    -Praying from the other side of the country...

  6. I can't imagine how tough the days and moments are, but I am so very glad you all know the Great Shepherd, the King of Glory. May you know and feel His love deeply in these days. Thank you for sharing with us and letting us pray with and for you <3

  7. I can't say anything but firstly that this brought me to tears, and secondly that you are ALL in my prayers. It's hard to even imagine, but I know a huge God who - if He doesn't work a miracle - will NEVER leave your side. And that's miracle enough for us humans. :)

  8. "Tuck said it to Winnie the summer she turned 15: Do not fear death, but rather the unlived life. You don't have to live forever. You just have to live. And she did." Tuck Everlasting, Natalie Babbit
    Rejoicing in the life well-lived in your mom's chapter 2 and knowing live is everlasting in chapter 3. Know that your "extended-extended" family is praying for all you asked, especially a miracle!
    The Kirchners (Caroline and Mike, Kate, Beth and Jennifer)

  9. I just went through this exact same thing myself. It is going to be a hard road, but let your heart guide you. And I am hear to be the voice of experience if you want it.

  10. I'm so, so sorry Kristen. Praying for your whole family, and sending love.

  11. NO words can come close, but hopefully this helps: Love you all and praying!

  12. I don't know you or anyone in your family, Kristen, but I want you to know that I, along with my parents, are praying for you and your family, especially your mama. I truly cannot imagine what you are going through, but I KNOW Jesus does! Please know that I will be snuggling with my loved ones extra much, in honor of your mama. Don't want to God's gifts for granted. If there is anything else we can do, don't hesitate to ask!
    In Jesus,

  13. Praying that Kevin can run to her at the end of the championship game, as the victor, one more time. Love you all. Heavy hearted prayers on your behalf.

  14. I've kept up with your story of Mama Bear for awhile now. Yesterday, when I saw on Cindy's Instagram the notice of your mom, tears flooded. I couldn't even comment. Your situation is all too new to me. I empathize with you. I took care of my Mom who died unexpectedly which left me to care for my Dad who was already on hospice care. As you said, "the weight of glory fell" and fell hard on my parents, but they are in heaven now.

    As the primary caretaker of my father in those last became rather challenging and difficult. Thankfully God's wisdom came through the nursing administration and they said, "Lesli, you are a DAUGHTER FIRST and a caretaker second." That phrase brought great relief to me and FREEDOM to enjoy my father in his last days. I pray that encourages you and will be a gentle reminder in the days ahead.

    God has your heart, He's big enough to hold it and all those you love. The phrase "Praying for you may sound redundant", but it's working on your behalf.

    May His Love, Peace and Comfort be yours,

  15. 24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?
    25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
    26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
    27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.Romans 8.
    Praying that the knowledge of the Holy Spirit making intercessions before the throne of grace (along with countless saints here below) may bring your heart much comfort. God speed to you and your family.

  16. Your mom and I were friends when we were single and nurses in DC. I remember having dinner at your mom's house once when your grandmother was visiting. Two gracious ladies!
    May the Lord's nearness be your good in the coming days. May the Lord bless you with much closeness as a family and many happy memories of these days together. I'll be praying for you. Love you, Sue!
    (2 Corinthians 4:6-18 - Amy's favorite scripture)

  17. Your mom, Suzanne, was our kids favorite babysitter when we went out on dates. She was our favorite babysitter too. Sue was a part of our church family, and was always a happy, optimistic, level-headed, intelligent person to be with. We love Sue, and though we have never met you or her other children, we know you are mightily blessed to have her as your mother. I pray you will have joy in many fun remembrances as well as close fellowship with God and each other during this time. Know we are praying for you all and continuing to contend for a miracle healing. Many blessings be yours.

  18. WOW, listening to this song while I am ready this post! Crying and praying for your family!!! I've been reading your blog since you started and enjoy all your writings! Praying for your mother!!!