One Year

Well friends, it’s been a year. 365 days of the highest highs and the lowest lows. There have been many whys and what ifs followed by finding peace, purpose and passion in the search for answers that just aren’t to be found. Nights of silent tears into my pillow and days filled with ordinary moments made magical simply because I am there to live them. 

  A year of learning that Hawaiian sunsets can fill your soul with God’s beauty and that there is not much that good food and great company cannot comfort. 12 months of kissing boo boos, spilled sippy cups, and realizing that no amount of perspective will give you limitless patience for the end of the world tantrums toddlers can throw. 

52 weeks of learning just what I am made of. And that is a strong mind, a loving heart and an unwavering faith. Of realizing that healthy and skinny are not the same thing. And that without your family and friends nothing else matters. 

It’s been four seasons of self doubt and guilt and feeling like I have to make my life mean something. Otherwise, what sense would it make that I survived when others do not?  Realizing that writing can cut you open and expose your deepest insecurities and your darkest fears. Knowing that telling your truth might be the only way to make you whole again. It has been hours of research and therapy and learning and speaking uncomfortable truths. Four holidays of looking into my childrens’ eyes, hearing their laughs and believing in the miracle of God’s Grace. 






Days when I have been forced to accept that sometimes the strongest thing you can do is ask for help.  It has been 12 months of trying to accept this new normal of mine. Of pushing too hard and paying the price. Of trying to forgive myself for being weaker and more tired. Of reminding myself that it could be so much worse and just how blessed I am. 

527,040 leap year minutes experiencing the redeeming nature of love.

 You hear it all the time- tough times can make or break you. But what about the times when they do both? I have been broken- my body dependent on machines and medicine to survive. I have been made- into a woman who sees the light in life even when it’s dark, the good in people even when the world’s tragedies weigh so heavily on our hearts. How could I not when I get to fall into the arms of a man who will catch me every single time I fall? A man who has carried far more of the load than I have over the past year. It has been a year of love. Of learning that love is often told not with big, romantic gestures but with the simple act of being there. Our story is one that is filled with cups of coffee, wrestling our two boys, laughing over YouTube videos, hand holding, date nights that end with us in bed by 9 watching House of Cards, trips to the pharmacy for another round of antibiotics, and a million other little moments that we almost didn’t get to have. It has been filled with memories we would give anything to forget and ones that we will treasure for as long as we live. The biggest lesson I’ve learned? It’s quite impossible to treasure every moment. No matter how much perspective you have, no matter how grateful you feel, no matter how much you love your life. It is possible to love with your whole heart, to be a kind person, to give back, to smile and cry and laugh and scream and to shine. Shine bright.

It has been a year. What a year it’s been. 




4 thoughts on “One Year

  1. Dear Audrey. What a year you have had, and survived your ordeal. Thank you for sharing your inspirational story with us. Even though people may say, they know how you feel, no one will ever truly understand what you went through. The love of your soul mate and family cannot be underestimated.
    Our family has experienced it’s fair share of trauma with our grandson William, ” the brave” receiving a donor heart recently. Mark and yourself have been most supportive and generous towards our family. We would like you to accept our heartfelt thanks for your support this year.
    Fondest regards, Colin & Judy Davies


  2. I hope Audry will see this message , I did’nt see any other way to contact you.
    I just finished reading your story , you have truly been blessed by the lord even though at times you asked yourself how can the lord let this happen to me. The lord works on his own time and believing and trusting in him are the most important things that we can do. Your story is really heart felt and I have been getting the sepsis news letter since my brother was hit with septic shock, I think it was 2 yrs for him in Sept. may be longer , the nightmare never ends .
    My brother has lost 6 organs and has a permanent colostomy . My brother struggles each and everyday
    with more things than you can imagine. His doctors are not a lot of help and say no one survives what you’ve been through . Doctors will not give him pain med for all the pain he has , has kidney issues and has no more organs to loose. He deals with depression and all that goes with that , unable to work and I can go on and on about his horrible story. He was a missionary for over 20+ years , he loves the lord and will give you the shirt off his back. His trust in the lord always comes first but this situation that has changed his life , it’s hard to understand why and what the lord has in store for him. I worked in the medical field for 22 yrs and the treatment he has received due to septic shock has been horrible.
    These doctors don’t seem to know what to do much less how to treat him. He does not seem to get the support he needs. This is the first time I have heard of your Begin again foundation and wish I would have known about this along time ago. It took my brother forever to finally get Medicad , talk about jumping through hoops , I think they were hoping he would die. He is still fighting for disability and what does it take, I guess loosing 6 organs along with all the other problems are’nt enough. There is no way he can work a full time job as they seem to think he can. He did his interview with the judge and he then required a psych. evaluation , we’ll still no word. What is this world coming to when anyone can get disability for back pain. His wife has a lot of medical problems herself and can’t work a lot so there are a lot of financial problems stacking up. My husband and I have been paying there phone bill for years now along with sending money from time to time.
    This month will be the worst , no money coming in and I will need to help with there rent.
    He does not get any support from my family so I am stressed to the point of not knowing what to do.
    I have eplilepsy and do not need stree in my life but this is my brother and I will help him anyway I can.
    What kind of help and support is out there for people that have had septic shock , the doctors say he should’nt even be alive , well like you and others you are medical miracles.
    Help !!!!!
    Sincerely , Lisa Johnson


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