Monday, February 14, 2011

Your Stories: There's Life in Death


First off, I want to say how much I LOVE your blog! My sister Katie showed it to me when I saw her over Christmas and I read it all up to date in a day, and now I'm hooked. She actually met you, she lives in Keller and knows your brother I believe? Anyways, I love your blog and look forward to reading every new post. You seriously need to make it into a book because when I first started reading it I felt like I was reading an amazing novel.

Anyways, I love reading the stories to share and I wanted to share one with you. It is not my story, I do have a story but it isn't as significant as this one. This is a story about a couple that I know through a friend of mine and it is an inspirational story that has already been shared with so many people but one I believe your readers would enjoy as well.

It is about Stacey and Brian Pritchard. They live in Des Moines, Iowa, as do I. I'll give you a back story, but they have a blog that gives their story justice. It is not about how they began their love story, but how their love has endured the toughest battle you can imagine. The "big C". Brian was diagnosed with Stage 4 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma on April 1, 2010. Stacey and some friends started the blog not too long after to document their story of how they were fighting the battle and how their love and faith was overcoming all the obstacles that came with it. Brian shared his stories of what he was going through and Stacey shared her view from the passenger side.

They are an amazing couple and unbelievably inspirational. They are two people that when you see them, you see a couple that is so in love and perfect for each other, you can only wish that you can find that kind of love someday. The blog they have is called Just Try and Ruin My Day! Which had always been Brian's motto in life. No matter what happened in his day, you couldn't wipe a smile off his face at the end of the day.

Long story short, it was a long and ever-changing battle they fought. They almost had the cancer beat when he started getting high fevers last month he couldn't break. He was in the hospital for a long time and they did plenty of testing, come to find out the cancer spread and it wasn't looking good. Unfortunately, Stacey and Brian's love story was cut short, Brian died yesterday morning (Tuesday February 8th). Brian was only 25 years old, they were married just two and a half years. I encourage you to read their blog, but keep tissues on hand. Stacey posted on it last night and it is the most beautiful post and if you only read that one post, it is enough to understand their great love for each other. I cannot imagine how she is feeling at this moment and the obstacles she will have to face to try to go on without the love of her life.

Their story, as well as yours, has taught me to appreciate everything I have in life, especially my wonderful boyfriend of four and a half years. When I first started reading your blog it brought back all the memories of when I first started dating him and it was wonderful to go through all those memories again. Reading through Stacey and Brian's story shows you to appreciate every moment in life and never let the little things, or big things, get you down.

Sorry this is getting long, but their story is meant to be shared. Here is a link to their blog:
I hope you get the time to read it.

Thanks for your wonderful blog, I look forward to reading new posts and seeing how your love story turns out.

-Samie P

------------Here's the blog post below. Go get tissues first.

The sun always sets
This morning when I laid with Brian I saw the sun peak thru the blinds in his room...I knew that today was the day. God opened his gates today and let Brian into his arms. I'm not, will be, or was ready to let go of Brian but I knew it was God's will and what is God's will, will be. As the sun sets tonight I see it as the sun setting on Brian's life on Earth but tomorrow when the sun comes back it will be the light on his new life in Heaven. Good- Bye only hurts because you love someone so much...and that is why today is so painful and heavy on my heart.

I did whatever I could to change God's plan the past 10 months but no matter how hard WE fought God needed him more. I miss Brian so much already I just wish he could come and wrap me up in his arms. I loved being in his arms...when I was there, there was always an overwhelming peace on me. He gave me strength to get through each day, he gave me peace when I was anxious, he gave me the confidence I needed in myself.

Man I love him. My heart will always weep and Brian told me, "Stacey time heals all wounds, you need time." I feel like eternity would not be enough time to get over my true love. Brian when he was strong told me to remember this...and I think it is something we can all use forever. This phrase speaks to Brian's character, the person he was, what he loved most about in life. "Stacey, remember, there is always good in people, you just have to find it." His grandfather told him that, and I believe when Heaven's gates opened his grandparents were there behind God to welcome him in. I can't wait till the day when he greets me. Brian loved life, LOVED it. With the bad he could always find the good. He had this unremarkable way to put a smile on my face...even when he tried to say 'I love you' for the last time.

Brian and I both found this blog therapeutic. It was our own personal therapist without the bills :). It was a way for us to have the relief of not answering 100 phone calls but yet express our minds to let things go. I know my new journey in life is going to be hard with many bumps, but with every bump I hope God blesses me with a TALL peak! I told Brian this would be my way of communicating with him and letting go of my thoughts.

I want to thanks you all for being with us on this long journey. I like to thank my gracious in-laws for loving me unconditionally. I want to thank my family for everything they have done to support me, even though it was hard for me to express that. I want to thank our friends who set this entire thing up and everyone else who donated, sent cards, emails, texts, meals, EVERYTHING.

All I want right now is to lay where Brian was yesterday as he was getting prepared for hospice. I want this bed to conform to me and hug me, I want it to be Brian. It is not a hospital bed, it is a place I can remember and can always crawl in. I miss him. I wish he was here.

To carry on Brian's legacy during his journey the past 10 months to witness to others I will leave you with this picture. Brian saw God, his last movements, he opened his arms lifted them to the sky looked and looked at the sky. I know Brian saw God. I know God was there with open arms and Brian was accepting God's hug. If you are not a believer I'm not sure what more proof there is in the this mortal world. I witnessed it with my own eyes and has forever been engraved. God is there, he is looking over us, he has a plan for all (although I think this plan sucked), look into your hearts and accept his love because the grass is a lot greener on his side.



  1. Another reminder just how precious, and short, life really is. I will never claim to know all of the answers. The "whys" to stories like this. But I will always try to live life out loud. And be grateful. Thank you for sharing this Whitney.

  2. You're welcome. I'll live out loud right along with ya!