My path to God has been one heck of a roller coaster ride, that is for sure. I will share with you the whole sordid story another time, perhaps. For now, I would like to share with you the story of how I found my way back to God, Jesus Christ and his Church, the Roman Catholic Church.
I had been away from the church for about 15 years when on September 12, 2011, my world was rocked. Fortunately, nothing happened to my family and nothing happened to me. Well, what on earth happened Andrea? Come on, already, spill it! On that day, I sat down to my computer, shocking, I know and opened up facebook to check on the goings on of my nearest and dearest friends, all 660 of them. I saw an update regarding a girl I had attended law school with for a short time. The update said something along the lines of, “My dear friend, Robin Evernham, passed away. Please keep her family in your thoughts and prayers.” No other details were given and me being the nosy gal that I am googled the name and found a link to Caring Bridge.org. Robin passed away on September 10,2011, leaving behind her husband Scott and two precious girls.
For those of you who may not know, caring bridge is a non-profit organization that provides individuals with loved ones in a hospital a website, similar to a blog, to keep friends and family updated. I had a caring bridge site for my boys, when they were born prematurely nearly 4 years ago. This organization is wonderful.
All right, back to Robin. I opened her caring bridge site and started reading.
Holy Moly! Her journal entries and those by her husband, Scott, were filled with the most powerful words I have ever read. Her cancer was of an unknown origin and she was diagnosed a mere year before she died. her journal was very personal, very poignant, very hopeful and joyful.
Joyful. Not a word one would normally associate with a diagnosis of terminal cancer. But that is what it was. Her absolute faith in God and His power and her trust in the Holy Catholic Church during this time of trial and tribulation was astounding. It surprised me and made me really think about what she was writing. I went back to that caring bridge site many times afterwards read her many prayers and the scriptures she quoted. Not once did she rail at God. Not once did she say, “WHY ME, GOD?” Instead, it was her absolute reliance and sheer love for God that made the last year of her life one of celebration, not sorrow.
I started thinking about my life and the lives of my boys, David, Mom, Dad, my brother and sister in law. I started thinking about how I would want to react if a tragedy ever befell our family. I knew I would want to be like Robin. I want to put my life and the lives of those I love in the hands of God and trust in Him completely. I wanted the love and faith Robin showed, to fill my life, not only during times of sorrow, but EVERY single day.
Since that day, I have attended Mass every Sunday. I pray daily. I am beyond grateful to God for all the blessings He has literally poured into my life.
I am a normal woman. I screw up all the time. I drink and I swear a little bit. I am, at times, unkind to my husband. I am by no means perfect, but that doesn’t mean I don’t strive for perfection.
Robin’s story is so incredibly powerful that I share it with someone different nearly every day. She is certainly my guardian angel and I am so glad God placed her in my life and used her words to touch my soul. She is the perfect example of the mom, wife, friend and daughter of God that I will forever strive to be.
Robin has touched so many people that an organization was started in her honor. The Robin’s Nest. There is an annual event held to raise money for ovarian cancer, which is the cancer that ultimately took her life. If you have the means, I think this would be a wonderful cause to add to your donation list.
A dear of friend of Robin’s also started a blog for entitled Dear Robin Letters. She explains:
We’ve all lost someone special. Maybe slowly, over time to cancer or another tortuous disease or maybe suddenly to heart attack or in a car crash. Either way, there are sometimes things left unsaid. Always there are things that come up later that you would love to share with “your Robin.” Here is that place…
What an amazing legacy Robin has left behind for her sweet family! Her short life was filled with love. Many loved her and she loved many, but none more than our Lord God and His Son.
My most sincere hope is that everyone I am able to reach will also be touched by Robin and her story.