Tuesday, January 26, 2010

All is Well.

I remember the night Robert passed away, the peace I felt. I wouldn't even say it was necessarily bittersweet, because it was mostly sweet. I've thought a lot about the events, played them in my mind, over and over. When I think about it now, I see angels. I know they were everywhere, all around me, Robert, our families, in the halls. I've never felt peace like that, like tons of beautiful whispers of love right into my spirit, comforting me, letting me know everything was going to be okay. I felt their joy, for Robert, a valiant son of God was coming back to them, clean, and as pure as a person can be in this life. He served his mission here, with help from many of the angels that attended us, I believe. I remember making the decisions about letting him go, to take him off his life support. It's those moments that I had clarity like I have never felt before in my life, I had never felt that kind of peace that comes with it. All worry and fear clears out completely, and I knew what was needed, what was right in Heavenly Father's eyes. I imagine that night now with angels, clothed in brilliant white, joy emanating from them. I imagine they were laying comforting, loving hands on all of us, and especially Robert, to give him strength, to let him know we would all be okay. I remember how we sang to Robert as he passed away, and I now hear it with the voices of angels harmonizing with everyone's voices, welcoming Robert home. We were all saying goodbye, but all those angels were rejoicing in his return, they were welcoming him back. It brings me comfort, that I can see that night this way. I see Robert in those brilliant white robes, pure joy on his face, looking more healthy than he ever has, healed perfectly, and knowing that he felt relief, that it had been enough, that he had served in every way he had been asked. "All is well"... I heard it whispered much that night through the spirit, and I hear it often now. Even though I am hurting, I know that it will all be okay, Robert and I will be reunited for eternity, of this, I am sure.

All is well.

Friday, January 15, 2010

The Biggest Laugh

Taken on Ashley and Robert's honeymoon.

Yesterday marked one month since Robert's passing. I've really missed him this week. I needed to post a funny story, maybe two. This story gave me the biggest laugh during the past month, and has even provided a couple chuckles since then, well pretty much every time I think about it.

Robert was in the hospital in Salt Lake, he had just completed his second transplant and he had developed his nasty case of mucositis and was sleeping a lot and recovering. He woke up from a nap in the afternoon and looked over at Ashley, who was reading on her bed.
"I'm hungry Ashley."
"Okay Robert, what do you want to eat?"
"What do we have?"
Now remember that Robert didn't like eating much at all at this point, so Ashley was a little surprised. They had a cupboard in the room that they kept food in, so Ashley opened it up. She quizzed Robert about a few of the things that were in there that she thought might be easy for him to eat. He saw the box of ding dongs and said, "I want those." Again surprising, since he didn't usually like chocolate at the time.
"Okay Robert." Ashley opened one for him and handed it over. Robert took one bite and started slowly chewing. Then he set it down on the table. About a minute later her fell back to sleep.
A five minute cat nap was all he needed. When he woke up he immediately looked at Ashley wide-eyed. He spit a brown ball out on his hand and said, "what is in my mouth?". . . "Did I eat this?!?"
Ashley laughed and reassured him that he did indeed eat that bite of ding dong. She showed him the wrapper and the rest on his table.
Cracks me up every time I picture his "what the crap is in my mouth?" face. Robert loved to tell his funny hospital stories. He loved making people laugh.

The other story that has made me laugh is about my daughter Josie. If you've been reading this blog for long you may remember that she was born during the Luau Fundraiser that we held for Robert last May. Because we couldn't take our young children around Robert in Salt Lake, he didn't meet her until he was home in October.

Josie on October 6, 2009

After the second or third time that he saw Josie, Robert told Ashley, "Josie is so asymmetrical."
"You mean symmetrical?" Ashley asked.
Robert replied, "no I mean asymmetrical. You know, like if you cut an A in half it is exactly the same on both sides."
Ashley saw Robert's logic, cracked up and told him that he meant symmetrical.

Both those stories gave me a good laugh. I've been told I'm easily amused, but hopefully they will put a smile on your face too. I wanted to make sure those stories got written down, too. Please keep your stories and pictures coming too! memoriesofrobdob@gmail.com

It really makes things easier when I am missing Robert to think of all the good memories I have of him, funny ones included. I think he is happy to see us laughing!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Continuing Legacy

I've thought about this blog this week. I've thought a lot about Robert. There have been emails, comments on here, comments on Robert's facebook page; people sharing thoughts and stories about what Robert and his amazing life meant to them. They are his legacy.

So many have shared that Robert was a force for good in their life. I know he was a force for greatness in mine. His legacy here isn't over, either. His influence still reaches out to us from the other side, from beyond his grave. His amazing example still spurs us all on to reach a little higher each day, to be a little better, a little kinder, to lift up someone else, to try to be like him. And in following Robert's example we will be following the example of our Savior. Because Robert loves his Savior and he tried every day of his life to live as the Savior wanted him to. Robert lived a life centered on Christ, a life directed by his immoveable faith. Today I am so grateful for Robert.

There was a theme, a common thread through the messages and thoughts shared at Robert's funeral: it is the message of our temples and that families really can be together forever, not just till death. Robert and Ashley weren't just married for time, they were sealed for all eternity in the Las Vegas Temple. If you would like to watch a short video about the blessings of the temple go here.

There is something about losing a loved one that makes you bold. I think it is because it causes you to pause and think about what is really important in this life. Robert was a college student when he was diagnosed with leukemia. When he died he didn't own a home, have a large bank account, or have an amazing car or any of the things that can seem so desirable in this life. He did have an amazing marriage with the love of his life, good relationships and love for and from his parents, siblings, in-laws and many others, he had a testimony of Jesus Christ and His gospel, he had many good friends. Those are the things that matter.

Ashley is bold. The experiences of the past two years, culminating in losing the love of her life in this earthly existence, they have changed her. There isn't much she fears anymore. She no longer fears death, and she doesn't worry about what people think about her. She is graceful and kind, yet speaks clearly. She doesn't ever want to offend, yet she desires to see others thrive in their marriages and lives. She nudges and reminds those around her to choose the right. I watch her, and I think she is amazing.

She is walking a path that no one besides her Savior can walk with her. I know that sometimes, as often as he can, Robert walks with her. Ashley will be forever a better woman, because she is Robert's eternal companion. She continues his legacy. Robert's siblings, parents, family and even his friends will continue to carry on his legacy.

So in the spirit of being bold, you should also check out this video, here.

I would like to thank all of you who have taken a moment to leave a comment or send an email. It has been such a blessing to read stories, most that we have never heard before. We are printing all of the stories and putting them in notebooks for Ashley and the Ashworths, so that we can add to them at any time. Please feel free to keep the stories coming, also we would love to receive any pictures that you may have of Robert. The email you can send both to is memoriesofrobdob@gmail.com.

Thank you!