On May 24 I got a text message from a very dear friend saying that another dear friend had just gotten the diagnosis of leukemia just a little earlier that day, and was heading to a hospital about an hour away to begin treatment the following day. Through the next few days, as the doctors came and gave information, and more tests were run, and they knew precisely what they were dealing with, it sounded like she could beat this cancer. Well, last Thursday, September 8 at 5:18 am , the Lord chose to take my friend Alyce home. Alyce leaves behind a husband of 25 years, 4 beautiful daughters, and 2 gorgeous and fun grandbabies, parents, brothers, etc, etc, etc…..but what she leaves behind as well is a legacy. This morning we, as a family, as a church family, as a community, and as business colleagues had the opportunity to celebrate the life of Alyce. The testimony that I heard from our pastor, from the family, and from our many friends, is that Alyce had a legacy of faith, and she leaves a legacy of faith. Alyce and I became acquainted almost 6 years ago when we changed churches. She was one of the youth leaders, and she hosted several events in her home for the girls that year. THe following year, I got to know her better, and she and I became very bonded through prayer. We became prayer warriors for one another and for one another’s children and spouses.
Last week, when I got the text from her oldest daughter that she was in ICU and that they were putting her on a ventilator, I immediately began praying! My first prayer wasn’t for her though, my first prayer was for exactly who I know she would have wanted me to be praying for….her husband and her daughters. Through the next few days I spent hours and hours praying for my precious friend, and her incredibly precious family. When I got the text at 2:20 am on Thurs morning that she had coded twice and it wasn’t going to be much longer I got my phone out and went back and read the text messages from the past 4 years (well, actually, however long I’ve had an iPhone)….. Alyce, I am going to miss you!!!! You were always so loving, so nurturing, and you genuinely cared, and I KNEW you prayed for us when I asked (and even when I didn’t).
This past week, the tears and the heartache have come at some of the most random times, and I’m always reminded to pray for your precious family, because whatever I’m feeling doesn’t even come CLOSE to what they are feeling, dear friend. Today I hugged each of your girls and told them that I loved them, and as you would expect me to, I sent food home with your parents….and Alyce, I baked your favorite cookies for them yesterday….yes, the toffee nut ones that you loved. God even had a hand in that one, dear friend, I asked Hannah what kind of cookie she wanted me to bake (because Clay…her boyfriend….you would love him!!!!…..had chosen the last cookies) and she said toffee nut. As I was baking them, I remembered that those were your favorite….yes, tears.
I know that God will bring healing to our hearts, but dear friend, you will forever be missed!!!! I love you, and I am never going to forget the prayers that you have prayed for us, the hugs that you have given me, and the tears that we have shed together. I will ALWAYS pray for Jerry and the girls, and I will check in with them often to see how I can help.
Goodbye dear friend! See you in the future….. I love you!