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The Story: Why it's called "My Longest Year"


His Longest Year

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    A few pictures from J.'s Longest Year...

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Crystal: My twin-sister's husband died after 6 mos from a brain tumor and then she took sick and died the following year from a rare, rare, disease. I took care of the two of them for 2 years plus running home to take care of my husband. It was difficult but with the Lords help I made it. Yes, it was hard and it is years later that I sometimes call her name and want to talk to her. She was part of me as a twin but to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. And I know that she is with the Lord. But I still MISS her.

I was looking up apron patterns and came across yours. I didn't know I was going to get something much more then a pattern. As I type this I am crying and can hardly see to type. I am reminded again that God doesn"t give us more than we can bare. That everyone goes through things in there life they just don't think they can possibly go through. I believe God puts in our life contacts that can encourage and give us hope that there is a day that we have joy again. Thank you for your blogs and web site. I will check in on it often. May God bless you and your beautiful family.

Thank you for this post for us to read. I woke up extra early this morning, aching as I think about my mom, another state away, grieving the loss of my Dad, whom she was married to for 54 years. This was a lovely tribute to your young sister, beautifully written and so articulate. There's one phrase that gave me tremendous hope this morning. Speaking of healing the "raw pain", gave me such encouragement. As I know the pain will never be gone, but to know of the "rawness" of it fading...thanks for mentioning that...I'm so sorry for the pain you and your family has faced with the loss of your sister...I'm praying for you this morning and giving thanks to God that your sister knew and loved Him.

God bless her!!!

I am just finding your blog, but I have lived in your shoes. My own sweet sister was killed in a car accident September 9, 2002. I have felt your emotions. I have lived your pain. There are good days and there are bad ones.

Your post is a sweet tribute to your sister. God bless.

Crystal, I just spent the last hour reading through your experiences, when I meant to be making your Nana apron. You have faced so much and have faced it with courage and understanding. Nine years ago May 5th, after being told he wouldn't last through the night, my little brother (then 18) was given a new heart. The details are similar, a girl was in a car accident and her family made that split second decision that allowed my brother to live. Not a moment goes by that we aren't thankful for that decision of her family to do some good out of a tragic situation.
Your words on grief are very wise and heartfelt. We shouldn't fight it, in ourselves or in others. It is what it is and experiencing it is the only way to heal and grow. Whether it takes a month or a lifetime. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and love and for the service to our country you and your family have given. I can see your words and strength help many people.
Love Stacy

Beautiful post!

this touches my heart so deeply. Isn't it amazing to think that Lora sees our Savior face to face...holds his sweet hand? My daughter does, too. I like to think that she sees the sunrise from the other side. I miss her, too.
They'll greet us one day. One sweet day. It's a promise. I know that you know that.
Much love to you, sister.

What a beautiful post. I found out this that I lost my grandfather to cancer this morning, and I am a mess reading this, but it is a beautiful tribute to a beautiful young woman.

Thinking of you all today.


And thank you for sharing. So very much.

Crystal - I sit here with tears streaming down my face. Though we've never met, I feel like thru your posts of Lora, I know you both and can see what a special relationship you had for 18 years and continue to have, in a different way. May your memories bring you comfort, joy, smiles and laughter as you move thru daily life. May E & A grow up with the same special bond. Thinking of you, Lora and your family on this day.

Oh Crystal, how you have touched my heart. I feel deeply for your loss. It is times like these that I know and believe that God puts us through trials to draw us closer to him... your expression of memorial in your beautifully written post screams with the love that only God can make. I will keep you in my prayers. Thank you for reminding me to count my blessings. The songs are beautiful... I send you warm thoughts, prayers, and peace. God Bless you.

Been thinking about you and your mom all day today, and remembering Lora and her light for Christ. Prayers--Regina

Thinking of you today.

Beautifully written. Painful to read. I remember May 22 as a wedding date that was canceled. It doesn't compare at all as it was one of the best things that happened to me as I met the best husband ever. Wish I could say something useful.

This is so wonderfully written. I love that she highlighted all those scriptures before she gave it to you. What a wonderful gift to always treasure from her!

I would never dream of trying to say something to "make you feel better" , I just want you to know I am thinking of you as travel through this day.


this makes me so sad for you. and ashamed as well. I have sisters who I am estranged from. you'd give your eye teeth to be with your sister or even just to hear her one more time. i have that ability and don't take it. I'm sorry for taking something as simple as having sisters for granted.
on another note: any life altering event really never goes away. I think we grieve life long. Until we are given that salvation and we can be free of the sorrow of what could have been.
although I didn't lose anyone to death I have had my share of life altering events.
also I find it interesting that when i read someone's story of an event in their lives i bring myself back to that time and try to remember what was i doing then?
when they say things could be so much worse for someone else. it's true.
just we don't know it until we read about it years later.
thank you for sharing your story!
Lora has a beautiful name!

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