Healing Through Scrapbooking
by Ann Bricker
It took me about a year before I could really deal with the intensity that it took to do my layouts for Andrew. I have about 40 pages that I put together remembering his life with us as a child & then all that he accomplished after he graduated and went out on his own. I have a few more that I’d like to do & will eventually have them all printed out for a scrapbook that was started at his memorial service in Ft. Wayne.
As I worked my way through his early years it brought tears to my eyes, but it also brought a smile to my face as I remembered all the “Andy things” we remember him for doing & saying. He was a shining light to all he met. And now I can say that his light continues to shine for me as I look back on my layouts for him with fond memories of the wondrous gift he was, a gift from God.
Give your kids hugs & encouragement daily — and don’t forget to tell them you love them!
“The strongest point of my faith started early Sunday, Nov. 15, 2009 and sustained me through the next few weeks as we faced the hardest days of our lives. Late that night we received a phone call from Dave’s cousin Cheryl where our son Andrew was living at the time. Andy hadn’t felt well for a few days after his long trip driving from California to return and make his home once again in Indiana. He had been at the ER the night before, but they sent him home after many tests that showed nothing.
We had talked to him earlier in the day and he was feeling much better and had plans for meeting friends that evening. Those plans didn’t take place as he again was not feeling well. Cheryl went to the store to pick something up for him; when she returned she found his lifeless body. He had suffered from an aneurysm that burst his aorta. They said that it was quick and painless. I was numb when Cheryl told us on the phone what had taken place. After calling Andy’s sisters, Dave and I sat up all night crying together; looking through photos of our first-born; remembering the good times we shared with him through his childhood and into his young adulthood; we asked God “Why?” We were in shock.
As dawn broke we made ourselves ready for church. When I opened my Bible while I was getting ready it fell upon this verse from the third chapter of Proverbs “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” God’s presence was felt by us both. He gave us comfort and strength. The support of our church family during this time was so very important.
God continued to guide us through the days and weeks to come. On Monday my devotional was from Charles Stanley and he said “As followers of Christ we fall in step with the Holy Spirit, who teaches us to stay on our feet when we are wobbly, to move uphill without tiring, and to stand again after we have fallen. We rely upon Him as our strength, guide and comforter.” It seemed everywhere I turned God was reassuring me that He was right there beside me and I could truly feel His strength — I know I could not have done any of the things without Him being there with me.
We made it through the memorial service in Ft. Wayne with Andy’s friends with God giving us strength to stand before the 250+ who were attending. Then the next week there was another memorial service in our small town where we once again felt God’s presence. There was one last service in Long Beach which we were unable to attend. Andy had made an impact on many, many people in his few short years here on earth and we thank God so much that He entrusted Andy to our care for almost 38 years.”
Questions to Ponder:
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