Ashley's Story

She will leave fingerprints all over your heart



Without hope...we'd have nothing.

Early Friday morning I quietly drew blood from Ashley's lines. Dave left for the hospital lab and I waited for him to return. He actually stood around and waited for the results to come in. Once they did we knew where we were headed. 51,000 platelets and we were gone!

I woke the older kids and simply said, "Throw your swimsuits in a back pack. We are taking Ash to the beach."

So this big brother...(so strong and handsome too:)

and this big sister...(who grows more beautiful by the day:)

had one of the best weekends of their lives...

making memories with this little sister(who we all adore).

As I sat on the beach and listened to the waves come in to the shore I smiled on the inside knowing that we were clinging to hope and not letting it go.

Our Ashley had made it to the beach. We had done it. With only two days left to spare of our summer we had actually taken her back to the beach one more time. The sounds of the waves put her to sleep each and every time I took her down to the water in just a matter of minutes. So while she slept, I took pictures. With my heart, with my mind, and with my camera.

NO regrets. NO wishing I would have just done it. NO wondering what if's. NO looking back over our shoulder. We CHOSE to LIVE and had an amazing, unforgettable time while doing it.

As we made the long drive home in the evening hours last night I listened to the giggles coming from the little passenger behind me and I said to Dave, "For Ash its not about the destination. Its all about the journey. She really doesn't care where we are headed...the ocean...the ball field...the doctor's office....she enjoys the journey. Its the getting there that puts a smile on her face."

What a journey its been and continues to be. I'm not even sure where we are headed, but I know that wherever we end up our family will have enjoyed the time we spent together getting there. Somehow I think that's more important than where we are actually going.

There are moments in this life we live that I wouldn't trade for anything...we had a few of those this weekend.

After a very rough last week we all needed to spend a few days hanging out together and we feel BLESSED after doing so.

Beginnings are scary. Endings are sad. Its whats in the middle that counts.
So when you find yourself at the beginning, just give HOPE a chance to float up.
And it will


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