Sunday, June 1, 2014


There's nothing more exciting than planning for the future, the anticipation of those plans, and them finally coming to fruition.  Whether it is planning a party, looking forward to a vacation, seeing friends and family, or beginning a new adventure, there is always a stirring excitement for what is yet to come.

The past 6O days have been building to this very day: the day when I not only look back at the past two months, but when I also prepare for tomorrow.  

This weekend and past two month will be a time in my life that will forever impact me.  Your kind words, your support, your love, your acceptance, your sharing, and your willingness to fight mean more than you will ever know.  I will forever carry each one of you in my heart.  

This past Friday was spent preparing for a party at our house.  What a beautiful day. Without the help of some of our dearest friends, there is no way it would have been possible.  Again, the selflessness of people in my life so incredibly humbles me and makes me endlessly thankful for each of them: the backyard was ready for 5O+ guests, the food was prepped, and beverages were in the coolers. All we had to do was wait for Saturday night to come and the people to arrive.  We had prepared, now all we had to do was wait in excited anticipation.  

The day started out with the amazing and emotional Great Strides walk with over 7O walkers for Team Ashley.  That is just pure insanity to me.  My eyes still fill with tears thinking about yesterday morning. The afternoon was spent putting the finishing touches on things for the evening's festivities.  I wanted everything to be perfect for everyone: I wanted to celebrate each of them.  

About 4 p.m. it began to rain: a steady light rain that permeated everything in our backyard. My mind was riddled with questions:  What were we going to do?  Could the rain just hold off for a few hours? Why tonight of all nights?  The rain never stopped. 

New Plan

With the help of our dear friends and family we had to get creative.  Some friends had some tents we could put over tables, and we used painters plastic to put over the pergola.  It wasn't ideal, but it worked.  Was it what I envisioned? No, but sometimes things turn out better than you could have ever imagined.  Last night was more memorable because of the unforeseen and uncontrollable.  It didn't matter that there was rain, what really mattered is there were so many people there I loved.  Like the double rainbow that covered the sky, the day was filled with beauty. 

Looking back at the last 6O days, is it what I envisioned?  No.  I could never in a million years have anticipated the response to this blog: the love, the support, the words, the connections made, and the change in myself.  We can plan all we want, but our moments plans might not turn out exactly how we had imagined. We need to remember that they are all special moments, even if they aren't what we expected them to be. 
The last 6O days have been some of the hardest days, but yet they have been some of the most beautiful in my life.  The days ahead may not be how I have dreamed or envisioned them to be, but I do know they will each be lived breathing bravely.  All my love and gratitude to each of you.

How will you breathe bravely?

Many of you have asked when will I write again.  I am not positive, but I hope to write periodically: continuing to share the beauty that is my life, the fight for every breath, and my hope in the future. 

1 comment:

  1. Ashley-I saw the article in the Argus and just finished reading your entire blog. Your brother was the first student who made an impact on my life as a teacher. I only met him once but corresponded with him via email as he completed English at West Lyon. I have a heart-warming note from him in my Happy Gram file that I will always cherish.

    Wow! You are an amazing woman! Thank you for sharing so eloquently your insights, emotions, struggles, and love to help others understand not only your life but the life of many with CF.

    Blessings to both you and Mark. You deserve the best life has to offer! It seems you have already figured out how to turn all situations upside down for the good. Hope to run into you sometime soon!

    :)Roselyn (Jacobson) Schillerstrom