Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Will you pray?

ANOTHER REQUEST ***** I'm really not feeling well. Billy and Holden had the stomach bug 2 days ago and I don't really have those symptoms I'm just feeling really achy and run down. Maybe my body is just trying to fight it off. My parents are here and our flight doesn't leave until 2:00 today so I can rest this morning. I REALLY don't want to feel like this on our trip on top of everything else, so again, will you please pray?

First of all, I love this picture.(click on it to enlarge) When you take young children out for a sledding day it can be a great day or it can be, well, not so great. After you spend at least an hour getting everyone dressed and layered it only takes one fall or one time of the gloves falling off and the meltdowns begin. Clearly in this picture it was not a great outing. Holden has given up and both girls are sobbing. Billy said Holden was mad because the girls didn't want to go down the "big" hill and he's pouting because now they're stuck on the "easy" hill since it isn't steep enough. They should've listened to their brother this time. This is what it's like in Chicago right now. See (Alabama friends) don't you wish we could have at least a few days when there is snow covering the ground. I do.

ok, about praying. Please pray for us this weekend. We're headed to Chicago on Friday and Billy will be speaking at a Men's Prayer Breakfast at our old church. He's nervous and he doesn't really get nervous. I'm just tagging along. I will get good time with friends and just enjoy catching up. I would love it if you would commit to pray. It's hard going back to a place you loved so much...good but hard. And obviously the weight of going back after losing Alaina adds another layer. We've talked about going to our old house and I know that will be painful.... even as I type the words I can feel the tears coming. She left her mark. Her mark is there. Her life was there. But her mark is here too. It makes me sad that my Cullman friends never knew her. They didn't get to see how much fun she was and how she could light up a room. But I've realized the past few weeks that Elley is so much like Alaina. She's spunky and determined but fun and lovable. She will sing as loud as she can and make up the words as she goes. She learned that from Alaina. So my friends can watch Elley and get to see much of Alaina's personality. Do you know it's so good for me to type her name? It may seem weird to you but even things like writing out my Target lists are sometimes hard. Because I don't write Alaina's name on the list. There's nothing I need to get for her anymore. Does that make sense? Emotions are such hard things to "deal" with. We watched a little video yesterday of when Alaina turned three and it was so HARD to watch. But at the same time I loved it because I could hear her voice and watch her laugh. That's why I have such mixed emotions about going to our old house. The memories are all great but that's why it's so painful. That was our life WITH her and now we must learn to live without. And learning, I guess is a life long journey and struggle.

I'm going to bed. We've joined a gym and I've been going EARLY (6:30am) to exercise. I'm tired...this body is screaming "What are you doing to me?" I haven't consistently exercised in forever so it's about time! That's another thing you can pray for me :)


BKicklighter said...

I don't think you know who I am - we met once in a hallway at Briarwood. I went to Troy with Billy; lived with Karen. I have been praying for you for months now and not saying a thing. I wanted to you know that I just prayed about your trip to Chicago. I am eager to hear how He makes Himself real to you, so let us know when you get back.
Blessings, Becky

April Brown said...

Absolutely, I'll pray for you!

btw...it's been since you and I walked consistently that I last had an exercise routine. I'm just now getting back into the swing of things and let's just say there's alot more to swing :)

love you!!

Amy said...

John and I will be praying. This weekend we are traveling back from Denver - were we got to play in the snow and go sledding (fun!!!) So we will be in prayer for you and Billy throughout the weekend and the days leading up to it. Oh and by the way, there have been so many of your post that after reading it, the first of many of my thoughts were - I am so glad to see her writing Alaina's name. I still think and pray for you so often Hope. The Lord brings you to mind at the most random times. The other day in Target I saw a girl with the red slippers on and it made me smile and pray for you. God is sweet like that - to give us reminders to pray for His people - our family. Have fun this weekend!!!!

Robin said...

I will pray..I know Billy will touch many hearts. I hope it is a good weekend for you both. Much love to all of you...Robin

The Hannahs said...

As always, I will pray. Love to you and your family.

It's me, shannon said...

I think of you often and even though I did not know her, I think of Alania often too. She reminds me of you- how you brighten up a room, how you always had a beautiful smile. I know her spirit will live through you and Ellie. My prayers are with you sweet Hope.
If you ever come to Jax, please, please let me know.
Shannon ( Dede friend from Troy)

Emily said...

Hello Hope,

I've been reading, crying, & praying over your journey. I'm Brandon & Christie M. sister in-law. I just wanted to say thank you for keeping the faith in the midst of so much pain. I have been following another family who also lost their child (at birth) but the things she write's about are a lot of the same things you have talked on. She wrote a post just today and after reading it I felt I should pass it a long to you. Thank you for sharing your joys, hurts, lessons & faith.


Kristin said...

I will PRAY!

I am laughing at April's comment... We've all got more to swing these days!

I still have the "new address" card you sent way back when you moved to Chicago. I always thought it was cute, and so I kept it. But, I love that Alaina is on it... Of course, Mary Helen is not, but I've got her birth announcement close beside! I keep that little card where I can see it, and it reminds me to pray for all of you. God also uses it to remind me to savor each day He gives us with things "as they are"... And how quickly it can all change. I look forward to the day in heaven when I can see all of you standing together again.

Just like Amy, God brings little girls into my path with sparkly shoes, and I think of Alaina and pray for you all. You come to my mind for all different reasons throughout the day. Know that the Goodes love you and continue to pray...

Meagan said...

Hey Hope you and your family have been in our prayers since my husband Scott installed your DSL and he told me your journey...You are a precious mother and sister in Christ. We finally made the move to Cullman, what gym are you going to I started at Sports first and am very excited about the outdoor pools for the summer. Please email or message me when you get a chance.. I would love the snow...

Anonymous said...

We are SOOOOO looking forward to seeing you and Billy. I am praying for you and for everything. I too love to keep seeing Alaina in your words and the blog pictures. It's impossible to think about you all and not picture sweet Alaina...your precious Lew. I love that.

By the way, I enlarged that picture above and really think it would win in some contest somewhere...how can everyone be so glum AND so unbelievably cute???Even Billy :))
So looking forward to seeing you,
Katie A.

thewheelerfamily said...

Oh Hope, I will be praying for you both as you make the trek north. I think of ya'll on a daily basis and I still get tears in my eyes as I think of Alaina in my VBS class. My heart hurts for you. Bo and I love you guys so much.

The Veenstra Family said...


We will continue to pray with you and for you. John 13:34 Is a New commandment that Christ has called us all to do. "Love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another." I am so very thankful for Christ's love that allows us all to love one other. Tell Billy not to be nervous he will be with friends who love him.
In Christ with His Love....Dan

Heather said...

We're praying for health, travel, Billy's time at the retreat and your visit, and wishing we could be there as well.
Big hug!
- Heather & Marc-Andre

Emily G said...


I have something for you. I have been meaning to take it to your mother's house, but just haven't found the right time. I have an oil painting of Alaina that I did for you. I have thought about you very much this past year and wanted to do something special for you. Give you something you can always have. I will be in Butler next week so I may try to drop it off them. You are still in my prayers every night.


-Emily Jacobs Graham

Jimmy Cowan said...

just wanted you to know that i lifted you up in prayer tonight. hope you have a great trip. remember God is big enough!!!!!
mrs. cowan

Kim said...

It is Saurday a.m. I am praying friends! I am praying for your time, I am praying for your body to feel well, I am praying for Billy as he speaks and for the hearts of the men that will hear him, I am praying for your time with your friends - may they love you well, and I am praying for your heart and Billy's as you are back in Chicago - missing Alaina and talking about her.

How we love you!
Kim and Dave

Shea said...

Hope, I hope you were able to make the trip. Have been in Butler the last few days as Cratin has had the flu so the kids and I fled "home" to Alabama. I so hope you are feeling better now. I just have to say that the picture of Holden, Billy and the girls in the snow might be the cutest thing I've ever seen. PRICELESS! In looking at pictures of Alaina she lived her dear life to the fullest. It's so clear how much she was loved and how much she loved life. Praying for you!!!

Michael and Jennifer Werneth said...

i've been praying too! love you!

JJMERKEL said...

Hope, I hope that you are feeling better by now. I am sorry that we didn't get a chance to see you, but I completely understand. Please tell Billy how much we appreciate him stopping by. It was nice to see his face! I am sure that was very difficult. I will continue to keep you all in my prayers! We love you.

Becky said...

I loved this picture! I actually laughed out loud. I think about your family often. I know the holidays hard.