No Genetic Heart Problems

October 22, 2009

The Heart of LauraThe post mortem did not reveal any reasons why Mike died. In case we had a genetic undiagnosed problem with our hearts, we had been advised by the medical profession to have some tests.

Kathy, Laura and I went today and had both an ECG and Ultrasound. Technology is so wonderful these days that allows them to check the “pump”, how thick the walls are, even listen to the sound of the blood going in and out.

We are pleased to hear that all of us have a healthy heart.  Kathy and I will have a further test in December where they inject some drug into the system and check the electrics. Akila will also at that time have the same tests as we all received today.

Someone said “Laura’s face cannot contain all her smile”! Well look at her heart here. A happy heart makes a happy smile!

Excuse me Officer, can you please remove your shoes?

October 21, 2009

Amazing what we sub-consciously muse over. I was vacuuming the stair’s yesterday and remembered the hours after Kathy phoned 999.

That week I had hired a carpet cleaner and cleaned every part of the house. How nice it was to see stains from Mike’s shoes especially disappear. His feet would never had a chance to get wet in rain. Those shoes had more McDonald’s fat on them than the chips he cooked! You can imagine how thoughtful he was in making sure he took them off before going up stairs, yea right!

I watched this large Policeman come through the front door as I am sitting in the lounge and notice his large shoes. I thought ” oye, get them off, I just cleaned”. That morning I watched 12 different people walk all over my nice clean carpet.akila photoshoot

Akila is soooo gorgeous, Fitzy she is a 10 cow woman!

Prescence, Power, Perspective & Priority

October 20, 2009

I have experienced the following as a result of Mike’s death;

  • Presenceof God in a new way. I ask Kathy, “who shifted, God or us”. In other words, is God showing more of Himself to us or has He always done that and we are just seeing in a clearer way because of where we are at in life. Either way, His Presence is so wonderful. I “sence” His presence and am scared of going back to “normal” and loosing that.
  • Power of God in relation to his Love, Grace and Mercy. Several times recently I have chatted with God that His presence is not sufficient! My giddy aunt, who do I think I am! I have wanted to see His power. What did I think that looked like? Was is signs and wonders? To see the fruit of Grace and Mercy in our lives is to see the power of God. A demonstration of His Grace is more powerful than a demonstration of His healing power.
  • A revelation of a Kingdom Perspective. Paul says in 2 Cor 4 v 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. Hello, how do you fix your eyes on what is not seen! I think Paul over enjoyed a rather large glass of Cabernet Sauvignon! Paul says in v 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. Smith Wigglesworth said ” I understand God by his word. I cannot understand God by impressions or feelings. I cannot get to know God by sentiment. I can only know Him by His Word”.
  • Priorities, what is core and what is peripheral, what is primary and what is secondary? Mike’s death has challenged me to the very core of my value system. Every value I hold dear I have had challenged. What I have seen is that “life activities”, like a creeping plant, can overtake and we lose sight of what is important to us. Mike’s  “last words” to me were “Dad you only live once”. So am I doing what I value in every area of my life?

Now the other side, well just read some of my previous postings, its not all victorious on the journey!

Now is my Laura stunning or what!Laura photo shoot


October 19, 2009

I wasnt sure how Kathy and I would cope emotionally when friends, Dave and Linda, invited us to a Remembrance Memorial Service for Dave’s brother Mike, who died in a Hawk jet just about 30 miles from Carlisle. We were both so blessed by the simple service and laying of wreath after. The military certainly know how to honor and respect each other. There is such a danger in our casual society of losing the formal and respect.

I realise how my Mike’s death has given me a whole new perspective on the topic. We owe so much to those who have gone before. We enjoy today because others went before.

mike andrews

The power of the Sub-Conscious

October 17, 2009

The ambulance with lights flashing pulled in front of me in the car.

They arrived and came into Mike’s room. I left and stood on the landing whilst they connected pads to his chest and used a mouth ventilator. I walked in and the older paramedic lady said some words which I cannot remember, but I saw the green screen monitor had a straight line showing Mike’s heart was not beating. Later she came to see me down stairs before she left and said she was so sorry and assured me there was nothing I could have done when the emergency services on the end of the phone asked me to pump Mike’s chest.

 Two minutes later as I crossed the traffic lights and realised I had been thinking the above. The sub-conscious linked the association of an ambulance to that August 1st morning. As I identified earlier in the week how subconsciously I was struggling emotionally with painting Mike’s room and again with the ambulance, our minds are so powerfully effecting our emotion. I think there is a verse in the Bible that says “as a man thinks, so is he”. So is there a way to control and master the sub-conscious?

Right or wrong I have prayed daily for the “Mikey Spirit”. (Don’t worry I also pray for the power of the Holy Spirit for you evangelicals out there!). Mike lived in this world with blinkers and looked at life with different lenses to most of us. I have daily been listening to Mike’s music. Whether that is in the home, office or car. Almost without exception I have woken in the morning with a phrase from one of those songs buzzing around in my head.

I put on a movie last night and fairly close to the beginning was a couple having sex. Although it was a fraction of the whole movie, I thought how can I be listening to all Mike’s music, be praying for the “Mikey Spirit”, and allow this into my mind and sub-conscious. I can pretend it has no effect but then I deny the power of the sub-conscious and how that screen will reappear in my mind in due course.

Mike’s death has allowed many memories to “rent space” in my mind and consequently invade my sub-conscious.

Can anything good come out of this?

October 16, 2009

 The question has been asked, ‘can anything good come out of Mike’s death?’ Yes it can, is my response, but that is not to be confused with ‘Mike’s death is good’. Human beings look for meaning and instinctively need a ‘box to put things in’. Its how we make sense of life. Many Christians do this by using the famous verse Paul wrote;

 Romans 8 v 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Some years ago whilst in formal study I came across the concept of ‘System Thinking’

Systems thinking is a framework that is based on the belief that the component parts of a system can best be understood in the context of relationships with each other and with other systems, rather than in isolation. The only way to fully understand why a problem or element occurs and persists is to understand the part in relation to the whole.Standing in contrast to scientific reductionism and philosophical analysis, it proposes to view systems in a holistic manner. Consistent with systems philosophy, systems thinking concerns an understanding of a system by examining the linkages and interactions between the elements that compose the entirety of the system.

And the word ‘Synergy’.

The whole is greater than the sum of the individual parts.

The way I had seen Paul’s verse used by Christians left much to be desired. Its only as we look at the whole, not the individual parts and recognize the interconnectedness of life, that we can begin to see how this verse works. Only when I understood these concepts, could I make any sense of Pauls point of view.

God has been in the business of turning tragedy into good for 2000 years. He is sovereign and loves His creation so much that he sent Jesus to die for us to break the power of sin and separation of man and God.

I could tell you some stories already that encourage the soul as a result of Mike’s death, but I feel they are so limited and from a human perspective. The bottom line, Mike is in heaven, isn’t that in and of itself good! How we all respond to Mike’s death is the key determining factor. I know for me it has drawn me into the presence of God and caused me to worship.

my buddy

Painting over memories

October 15, 2009

mike room starsIt took several attempts to get started on painting Mike’s room. I managed to clear all the furniture out before lunch but then after lunch decided to go to bed! I am so tired these days, don’t feel brilliant in myself and very frustrated. Well the bed idea became a mid day movie! Tried to sleep but just lay there thinking about Mike’s room and started to get that too familiar knot in the stomach.

In 2000, Kathy and Mike went to Australia after our 3 months on Doulos in Asia. The girls and I returned to England and as a surprise I gave Mike’s room a make over. At that time he was into space. He was becoming fascinated with planets, stars and space craft. So I decorated his room in dark blue, found lots of aluminous stars for the roof and brought aluminous paint and stencil for the walls. I found some nice furniture at IKEA and a great bunk bed that had a desk etc underneath. To finish it off, I brought him a new bike. What a joy to see his face when he arrived home!

So taking the stars down, painting over memories may be explains why I am having trouble doing this job.

Mike room paintMy friend Ray was going to help but his father-in-law passed away. Isiah, Mikes friend, is coming over today to help so that will be nice.

Last night I lay in bed and said to Kathy “Im angry”. I’m becoming very angry with myself and frustrated that all this emotion is holding me back. Angry that my energy level is at an all time low. Angry that I have allowed myself to not be as fit as I should be. Anger that I so miss Mike. I love him so much.

Why do I have to paint over memories?

Why do I have to paint over memories,
And remove the stars above,
A room that represents your earthly fathers love.
We told you we wanted to paint it,
When you left for Coventry,
But we would have done that together,
Your mum, you and me.
Why do I have to paint over memories,
And remove the stars above,
A room that represents your earthly fathers love.
You would be there for hours,
Building your Knex’s,
Staying up all night
And then in the morning, showing me with delight
Why do I have to paint over memories,
And remove the stars above,
A room that represents your earthly fathers love.
You picked up my guitar
And strung some simple notes,
But in that room you practiced
And developed a hobby,
Why do I have to paint over memories,
And remove the stars above,
A room that represents your earthly fathers love.
In that room I found you Mike
Asleep in your bed
Only on that day you were dead.
Why do I have to paint over memories,
And remove the stars above,
A room that represents your earthly fathers love.
I do it Mike because I love you
And lay you to rest.
I was there when you came both in and out of that room,
And so as dad, I bring closure to that special place.

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