27 August 2015

Signs of love

A while back, I wrote about Bennett's sinus surgery nurse and how she had surprised us by having already known about us because my friend Kayla had shared our story weeks before.  Kayla is a champion for Bennett so I wanted to share more about how her efforts this year impacted us.

If you like HGTV's Fixer Upper show, then you'll love the artwork that Kayla creates.  She is a wife/mom of two, a talented crafter and owner of Linen and Lumber.  Last year, Kayla auctioned off two beautiful items in order to raise money for a cure for Bennett.  This year, she raffled off two more:

These pieces are *beautiful* and we knew they could be best appreciated in person.  So, we asked Emily, owner of Waco's hottest vintage and antique store Junque in the Trunk, if she would be willing to allow us to place the signs in her store for a few days.

Emily, who has such a big heart for others, did not hesitate at all.  She was more than willing to help us do anything to raise money for a cure for Bennett. The signs stayed in the store for several weeks.

However, tragically, during the time period when Kayla's signs were being displayed at Junque in the Trunk, there was a sudden death of one of Emily's wholesalers.

A local man who had been hand-making some of the store's most popular light fixtures had suddenly died.  Emily was heartbroken, both to lose Randy but also for his wife who was now a widow.

In an effort to help this Randy's widow, whom she cared about (I told you Emily has a big heart), Emily decided to raffle off the man's last light fixture left in the store and give that money to the widow.  The light fixture raised several hundred dollars.

But when Emily offered the money to the woman who had lost her husband, the woman, who had, at this point, heard Bennett's story, asked Emily if she would turn around and donate it to Bennett's Brigade.

I was a puddle of tears when I heard this...this sweet woman having just loss of the love her life had turned around and given that money to help give our little guy be able to live. 

It wasn't until I reached out on social media to thank this woman, whose name is Tammy, and asked if I could share her story on the blog that I realized I knew her.  Tammy was once a nurse at Bennett's pediatrician's office.  

When Bennett was a baby, we were in the Pediatrician's office ALL THE TIME.  Tammy was one of the sweet nurses who would regularly say hello and smile in the hallways, offer to get the kids stickers and suckers after their appointments and just make the experience of taking my special needs child to the doctor a little less painful.  

But realizing I knew her made Randy's death even more difficult.  Tammy is so kind and caring.  Losing your husband is so unfair.

At a loss for words, I told Tammy I wished very much that I could take away her pain.  Tammy's reply to me was, "I wish you could bring him back also, but I do know that God had bigger and better plans for him and I."  

Tammy explained why she donated to the CF Foundation in memory of Randy, "[Bennett's] story touched my heart and I know it would have my husband's also."

I want to thank Tammy again for her donation and for honoring her husband in this way.  We recognize what a gift this is and will forever remember Randy.

Kayla's raffle ended up bringing in about $1000.  The winner of this sign is Haley Fuller.

The winner of the easel is Christi Cane.   We are thankful to EVERYONE who participated in this raffle for their donation to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in honor of Bennett.  

Kayla explained to me personally several times this year how she much she just wants to use her talents to bless others and how her greatest hope is that God would work through them.  Looking back over the last few months, I cannot deny that God has done just that, Kayla.  Thank you for making us the beneficiary of your hard work and care.

Although we have not yet found a cure for Bennett, we certainly are not short on blessings.

With greatest sincerity, THANK YOU!!

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