The road to Happily Ever After

5 08 2010

Yesterday George, Jacob, and I drove to Dallas with plans to have dinner with my parents, my sister Lois, and Luke & Sarah. We told them to expect us around 6:00, but we left home early enough to get into town by 4:00, allowing time for a visit with Tyler and Tiffany Martin and their precious daughters.

I’ve mentioned the Martins several times before, encouraging everyone to pray for them and their youngest child, Claire, who is recovering from a near drowning accident. Tyler is blogging their journey, and he does an amazing job of capturing the emotional extremes, the physical challenges, and the spiritual battles they face. If you’re not already reading their story, I hope you will.

I visited the family once while they were at Baylor in Our Children’s House, but this was the first time they’d met George and Jacob. I really wanted them to meet Jacob. He is a monument to joy, faith, and God’s goodness. And he’s just a fun person to be around.

I can’t say enough about how impressed I am with this dear family. Even in the midst of intense trial, their home is a haven of love and gentle respect. I’m honored to know them.

From there, we drove to my parents’ house. My sister is in town from Connecticut primarily to spend time with them. Our mom is rapidly losing her memory. I’m sure I’ll write more about that later, but for now I’ll just say that we’re cherishing what remains, and last night was a sweet time. Luke and Sarah also came over. It was the first time we’d seen them since they returned from India. God is teaching them so much and blessing their marriage. I love every chance I have to be with them.

This morning Lois took us to the airport, and now I’m writing this post from the rocking chair in Harper Sparrow’s nursery. This evening we plan to go to Molly Moon’s for treats: ice cream (of course), plus Grace and Curtis will be performing there tonight. Simple gifts. Pure bliss.

Life is a melange, the sweet and the bitter and the two inextricably entwined. Sometimes my heart can’t distinguish the beautiful ache from the sorrow. What I do know is the end of the story, which brings me to “Happily Ever After” —  the piece I wrote today on The Master’s Artist. I hope you’ll stop by and share your thoughts.

We were created for a happy ending. The road may get rough along the way, but it also has its delectable delights. I’m off to enjoy some of mine right now.


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8 responses

5 08 2010
Michelle Habel

Hi Jeanne,
I am Tiffany Martins big sister (well, one of them). I began reading “Parting the Waters” today. Your story is so similar to Claire’s. It is surreal. I wrote on Tyler’s blog that it almost feels like I am reading his words. The first few chapters had me weeping. From the stories of receiving the news and remembering how we all felt when we found out…to the beautiful acts of love. It is a tapestry that God is weaving. One, that no one would ever ask for. I have wrestled with the same questions that you have…”God Can heal, but will he chose too”, and even just as simple as “WHY!” It seems such an unfair this to happen to such a innocent little girl. Claire was always loving to everyone. She would run up and throw her arms around your neck in loving abandon. She is just the sweetest most precious little girl. When I visited Texas, it was so difficult to see her in pain, to see my sister in pain, Heidi, Autumn and Tyler. The Yellow ribbons reminded me of these necklaces that were made for the ladies of the family from Tyler’s sister’s fiance’s mom (Maybe you saw one on Tiffany). I have worn mine every day since I got it. It has a cross, a heart, and a charm that says Claire. The fragility of life is pretty much just in our face now forcing us to deal with it. After church last week, my family we went to lunch at KFC and saw a man wearing a helmet drinking a soda. I marveled at how my view of life has changed. The man had a hard time walking, but he could walk. He even came over and told us a joke. He said, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” I smiled and asked, “why?” he pointed at my bucket of chicken and said, “Too get away from him!!” (Colonel Sanders) I thought to myself how this man was in better shape that Claire is right now. He can talk, make a joke, buy a soda…ect. When you spoke of singing over your son and offering a sacrifice of praise, I very much related to that. I had to chose myself to continue to praise God and believe in his goodness. It was a sacrifice! it was hard. I did it mingled with tears and heartbreak.
Anyway, I just wanted to reach out to you and tell you thank you for reaching out to my family. I live in Colorado as does much of Tyler and Tiffany’s family. So, we don’t get to see them often. It has touched me deeply how people have loved and supported them. It means the world to me.
I am on chapter 9, or your book and am anxious to continue reading.
Your Sister in Christ,
Michelle

5 08 2010
jeannedamoff

Michelle,

Thank you so much for your heart-felt comment. I’m honored and so blessed that our story encourages you and your loved ones. Tiffany, Tyler, and their girls have taken up permanent residence in my heart. I wish I could have met them under other circumstances, but — like you said — God is weaving a tapestry. Our stories intertwine with others by His design, and sometimes that comes through suffering.

I have so much hope for Claire. She is making wonderful progress, and she is surrounded by the most loving, supportive family she could ask for. All of you are a shining example of faith, compassion, and selflessness. There’s no way you can know how much difference you’re making in the world. It’s beautiful.

Much love,
Jeanne

5 08 2010
Mary DeMuth

I am in love with Molly Moon’s. Hug it for me.

5 08 2010
jeannedamoff

Will do, Marzipan. xo

5 08 2010
Patricia (Pollywog Creek)

What a gift you are to the Martins.

God is good, good, good. Even in the sadness of your mother’s memory loss, I know that you will experience His goodness. It will be more of your grace story, Jeanne. The only time I ever remember my daddy telling me he loved me or gave me a hug was after he had Alzheimer’s. Isn’t that sweet?

Rejoicing with you in those simple, blissful gifts.

5 08 2010
jeannedamoff

Thank you, Patricia, for the encouragement and for the rejoicing.

Love, Jeanne

5 08 2010
Michelle Habel

I just finished your book. I truly believe that God gave me this day to read it. The story is overwhelming. You were so honest and raw…vunerable. I appreciated that so very much. I am still marinating on everything that I read. This may sound stupid, but it is like God wrote this story for me. Not only for me, but He used it just at the right time. What an encouragement. What I wouldn’t give to see Jacob worship. There is nothing more beautiful to me than peopple who worship with abandon. I also partner in leading worship at my church, just on a side note. I hope to meet you one day, all of you. You have blessing to me today. Thank you for sharing your story. 🙂
Much Love,
Michelle

7 08 2010
jeannedamoff

That doesn’t sound stupid to me at all. On the contrary, it’s an answer to prayer and the reason I wrote the book. My prayer all along has been that God would place our story in the hands of people who need to read it, and they would meet Him on the pages. Your comment made my day. Thank you so much, Michelle.

Love, Jeanne

Your comments are a gift. Please know I read each one with gratitude.

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