Today is also different because one year ago today, Amy's husband Stuart passed away. He lost his seven month battle with brain cancer, and Amy lost her husband. I was there with her and their other family and friends when he slipped away, and it was a LONG, HARD day.
I was actually never that close to Stuart, even though I knew him before Amy met him. In fact, I never even really knew how amazing and giving he really was until his memorial service. I did know he was an absolutely great foster father to the foster children he and Amy had, two of which they chose to become the legal guardians of. At the service, someone said that Stuart lived like someone who didn't have a very long time to live. I have wondered since what would happen if I lived more like this...maybe I'd play with the kids more, laugh more with friends, worry less about the little, unimportant things like how the garden looks or how clean the house is.
It sounds a little strange, but death has taught me so much about life. This year I have watched as my friend works her way through the grief process, and wonder, does it ever really end? How do you get to a point where you're past all of it? I would have to say that Amy is one of the strongest people I have ever known. Not because she never has a hard time, but because she will not give up. She has lost her husband but continues to raise their one last foster child on her own. It has been the most lonely, difficult year of her entire life, but she has not lost her faith in God. This just amazes me. I have to look deeper into my heart than I really even want to and ask if I'd be able to say the same thing about myself. It's so easy to say you love God when everything is going well, but what if everything I held onto slipped right through my hands? I am a little afraid of what the answer would be.
But I watch my friend, and she remains faithful. She gets up every morning and goes to work. She takes care of her son. She continues to be a good friend to everyone around her. And I really don't know how she does it. So Amy this is for you. Because I so much hope and pray things turn around for you and that you find happiness again!