Monday, April 26, 2010

Our time is but a breath, so we better breathe it

God has continued to bless our lives over the last two months.  Physically, I was able to walk without crutches in mid-March, and remove my walking boot two weeks ago.  Wearing two shoes was a strange transition after four months of my “special boot”, and it was precious that Colleen kept saying that “Momma’s leg is allllll better.”  I have an amazing physical therapist who has not only helped heal my body, but also serves as a ray of God’s light in my life.  It is almost hard to remember that just a few months ago I was crawling through my house because it was easier than using my walker, and just one month ago it hurt to walk even short distances without my crutches.   With every pain-free step, I am reminded that God is good.

The last two months have brought big changes in other parts of our lives as well.  I returned to work full-time, and have begun to adjust to the reality of being a single mother.  The first few weeks were hard.  I had to adjust to getting up, getting myself and Colleen ready, and getting to work on time.  While I was off crutches, it still hurt badly to walk, so every task too longer than it normally would.  Colleen was not used to going to school early in the mornings , and had a hard time adjusting to our earlier schedule, and by the time we get home each night, I have household chores and work that keep me busy until late.  I was exhausted, mentally and physically.

 I chose to go back to work during Spring Break, so that I would be able to transition during a slow week.  I walked into my office on my first day and was greeted by an enormous sign on my wall –signed with personal notes from all of my colleagues - welcoming me back.  I stood in the doorway and cried.  I am blessed to work with an amazing community of people that has showed me so much support.  I am overwhelmed by their kindness daily.

 I also hadn’t  thought to prepare myself for how different my workday would be.  Chris and I had a work life was very different than most couples.  Our buildings on campus were literally across the street from each other.  We would ride to work together most days, eat lunch at home together almost every day, and chat sporadically on instant messenger all day.  Whenever something funny, or stressful, or random would happen, we would send a quick note to each other – make each other laugh and get on with our day.  The first few days at work, I had such a hard time remembering that he wasn’t there.   There were so many things that happened during the first few days that I wanted to tell him about – I felt a sense of loneliness that I wasn’t prepared for.  I ended up crying many other times that week.   I would close my office door – take a deep breath – and ask God to help me make it through the next hour.  It was hard, but I did it.  And the second week was easier than the first, and the third easier than the second, and it has continued to get easier as the weeks have gone on.  Now that my leg is feeling so much better, our mornings and evenings are easier.  Colleen and I laugh, we play in the back yard, we watch the movies, we go to the park, we make dinner, we eat ice cream – we do all of the things that make life….beautiful.  Of course, every day we wish that Dada was here with us, but we both know that we are living how he would want us to live – with strength, with hope, with joy, and with love.

This past week, we honored Chris at the Texas A&M campus Muster ceremony.  In all my years of attending Muster, I never imagined myself holding a candle for my husband.  It was a hard, but beautiful day, and one that I am honored to have participated in.  Chris had people all over the world say “here” for him that day.  His life lives on in the memories of those that he loved, and who loved him, and I know how lucky we are to be able to celebrate his life with our Aggie Family.

God also continues to send us messages of hope and love.  We have been blessed the opportunity to buy a new home that is within walking distance of Chris’ wonderful parents – Colleen’s Meme and Poppa.  They have always been an integral part of our daily lives, but their support has been incredible the last few months.   I was not looking to move.  I love our house.  It is the house that we built our family in.  It is our home.  But I have made a commitment to accept the gifts that God sends to me with open arms and an open heart, and he couldn’t have sent a more clear message with the gift of this new home.  I know that Chris would love for us to live so close to his parents - it will be a blessing in all of our lives - and I am so thankful.

Please continue to pray for us as we make this transition.  We continue to feel the power of your prayers in our lives, and continue to be awed by the wonder of God’s love and faithfulness.  I still miss my Chris every day, but each day I am filled with joy at the light in Colleen’s eyes, her beautiful smile, and the peace that God is leading our days.

I will leave you with the song that is touching my heart now.  I am touched by the reminder that “We are not long here.  Our time is but a breath.  So we better breathe it.” and comforted that truly “Hope is coming for me”.
With Love,

Brooke Fraser – CS Lewis Song:

If I find in myself desires nothing in this world can satisfy,
I can only conclude that I was not made for here
If the flesh that I fight is at best only light and momentary,
then of course I'll feel nude when to where I'm destined I'm compared

Speak to me in the light of the dawn
Mercy comes with the morning
I will sigh and with all creation groan as I wait for hope to come for me

Am I lost or just found? On the straight or on the roundabout of the wrong way?
Is this a soul that stirs in me, is it breaking free, wanting to come alive?
Cos’ my comfort would prefer for me to be numb
An avoid the impending birth of who I was born to become


For we, we are not long here
Our time is but a breath, so we better breathe it
And I, I was made to live, I was made to love, I was made to know you
Hope is coming for me
Hope, He's coming


  1. Kristin,
    Your strength is amazing to me. While I cannot imagine what it is like to be in your position, your posts confirm that God is good, even when one will wonder why He does certain things.
    You are an inspiration. I regularly reach for my phone while driving, and then stop and think of you and Chris. Although I never met him, I know his story is saving others through you. So, thank you.
    I am so happy that your recovery, at least physically, is going so well.
    May God continue to bless you and beautiful Colleen.
    -Laura Kelley

  2. Thank you for all the updates, Kristin. I know each day brings a continued or new challenge but the strength of God in you is such a blessing and amazing testament to your faith and his love. I'm excited about your move... how great for you and Colleen to be near the Coopers! Please let us know your move date... we want to help!!

  3. You continue to be in my prayers in Idaho and I want to thank you for sharing your journey with such openness and courage.
    Marci Glass
    (Karen's seminary buddy in Boise)

  4. I read through tears today and I am so amazed at how our Lord and Savior is helping you sweetie. You seem to be getting stronger and I am so thankful for that. The day that Chris went home to Him I was so thankful that sweet Colleen was still with you. That was my first thought when I learned of it. After raising 3 beautiful daughters I know the treasure and gift they are from God and you and Colleen are going to have a beautiful life together. Write her words down everytime they touch you and give her a hug from her Aunt Sherry!

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  6. Jonathan and I are praying for you. Thank you for the update. We will pray that God continues to give you strength. Love, Sarah (Broyles) Lee

  7. You continue to bless our family by your example of amazing faith. Michael has been so blessed to work with you, I'm excited that you get to be a part of a Bible study with an amazing group of women (the Monday night study with some of my friends...Julie, Mandy, and Melissa), and I'm excited that we are about to be neighbors. I look forward to spending more time with you. Much love, denise

  8. Thank you for sharing your beautiful spirit, Kristin. You are touching many lives in a very meaningful way, and reinforcing the notion that indeed, God is good.