Brandy Day287: Truth Of It All

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‘When you are in the final days of your life, what will you want?  Will you hug that college degree in the walnut frame?  Will you ask to be carried to the garage so you can sit in your car?  Will you find comfort in rereading your financial statement?  Of course not.  What will matter then will be the people.  If relationships will matter most then, shouldn’t they matter most now?’-Max Lucado

This is where I will begin again.  I made a commitment with Chandler and I got away from that.  I let ‘life’ get in the way and chipped away a small part of a very important relationship.  I want to finish this.  Not because I have to.  Not because my ‘mommy sat me down spoke firmly to me’.  I need to because Chan & I were in this together.  In 19 years, Chandler has stood by my side and loved me unconditionally.  Chandler has watched me fall and climb back up, never once judging me, but hurting for me because he loved me. I’m sorry I have let you down Chan!  I love you bud ❤

Chandler Day 355: You’re How Old Now?

DSC06695Today was Nick’s birthday and he turned 30 years old. In my mind it’s kind of crazy to think he’s 30 now. He doesn’t seem 30 and I still think he’s like twenty-five half of the time. I remember still hanging out with him, playing Need for Speed, and him telling ridiculous stories when he lived at home. It is crazy how fast time goes by and people grow older. How the years add up with countless memories and new experiences. But there are many more years to look forward to and lots of things to do and Nick is headed towards great things and I can say I’m proud to have him as my brother.

Happy Birthday Nick!

Chandler Day 343: Autumn & Kaleb

DSC 25This is Autumn and Kaleb, Dustin and Jennifer’s daughter and son. Autumn was the first grandchild in the family and the first niece. I had become an uncle and it was fun having new people in the family. I remember holding both of them in the hospitals, excited to have a niece and a nephew. It has been fun watching them grow up and it is incredible that they are this big already. They are both very smart kids. They are very ornery and funny (I wonder who they get if from), and they are great kids. I love the both of them and I can’t wait to see what they grow up to be.

Chandler Day 341: Nicholas

DSC 8This is Nick, my brother. Nick has always been a great brother to me. He always seems to be there for me when I need him the most. Oftentimes I don’t think I need to talk to him, but he’ll call me up and what he has to say is just right. Nick is hilarious and has always made me laugh with his stories and jokes. He’s a goofball. He’s caring, smart, hard-working, strong, sensitive, funny, loyal, a great brother, a great friend and a great man. I love him and I’m glad that he is my brother.

Chandler Day 338: Dustin

DSC 5This is Dustin, my oldest brother. Dustin is one of a kind. He is hard working, great at what he does, smart, hilarious, straightforward, and a great father. He might be a little rough around the edges, but he is a good man and a good father who had done a lot for his kids. I am proud to call him my brother and I love him.

Brandy Day286: A New Kind Of Forever

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Today it arrived, 8 years 5 months & 5 days. I guess I always assumed that the headstone would make it hurt more. Finalize things. The truth of it though, it brought some much needed, long overdue peace.
I’m not sure how to explain it in words. I never questioned when his parents would have it or what would be on it. The realization of it all came on my birthday. Then I was shown the rough draft and cried. Cried because of the meaning. The existence behind something that had been missing.
Momma Lynch text me today saying it had arrived, and with the text she sent pictures. I cried. I couldn’t breathe. Not from sadness but from the overwhelming feeling of comfort. Obviously I finished what I was in the middle of doing and headed to the cemetery. It was more beautiful in person. Artistically amazing, just as he was. The two circles on the bottom corners are medals that his family was given after donating to save others. ❤ The back, among other items, holds two beautiful pieces left longer than any life or memory. The top left corner holds my exact turtle tattoo. His mom says when he left he took a part of me. The bottom right corner says 'Love, Jordan', my most favorite thing ever. It's traced so it's his handwriting. Signed almost to insinuate this is the end.
His parents and brother did an amazing job putting something together that no family should have to do for a child or younger sibling.
I love you guys to the moon & back and I'm more than certain he wouldn't change a thing on it if given the opportunity.
40,000 Americans die yearly by suicide, making it the 10th leading cause of death. Every 13.3 seconds someone takes their own life, leaving those who love them to live in a whirlwind of confusion, depression and a life without closure.

Chandler Day 278: Keeping Calm

photo 13So I had to borrow this picture from Brandy, as I did not actually shoot any photos tonight. I needed a night off from everything. It has been a long week and another long week looms ahead. I was honestly so tired and worn out that I didn’t want to go anywhere. But Hannah encouraged me to go. So tonight I relaxed and enjoyed my time with Hannah, Brandy, Nick and a big group of great Chivers. We played some games, donated to a good cause, talked with some fun people and had a lot of fun ourselves. It was a good night and I needed it. So thank you Brandy for the lovely photo and for inviting me to what is always a good time and thank you Hannah for encouraging me to go when I wanted to be a bum and not go out.