Article submitted by Norb Kurrle, Field Coordinator in Paraguay
Julie was the blogger in the family. Occasionally I would post a story or share my thoughts, but this blog was a personal way for Julie to communicate.
Since the accident, I have been debating whether I should continue posting here, where Julie so passionately and regularly shared her thoughts, her struggles, and our adventures in Paraguay. For three months, I’ve put it off, but today is a special day, and I strongly feel the need to honor her. I think that Julie would encourage me to continue her work and maybe even smile from heaven as I post this blog entry on what would have been her 36th birthday.
I am told that time does not exist in heaven, so whatever age we are when we leave this world does not really matter in eternity. Does that mean that Julie won’t have a party to celebrate? Well, from what I understand, heaven is so very special that the party never ends.
And that’s good because Julie loved to celebrate. We would celebrate getting documents, or clearing packages through Customs. She wanted Timi to know how important going through each childhood stage was, so she tried to make birthday and family occasions special. My family, on the contrary, did not celebrate as much growing up.
On her birthday, Julie would have wanted breakfast in bed. She started that tradition on my birthday, so when her birthday came around, it was my turn to honor her. She loved being woken up by Timi and me singing “Happy Birthday” to her. Breakfast would consist of eggs, sausages, warm tea or coffee, and, of course, being with each other.
As far as gifts, we tried to do special things for each other. Spending quality time was high on the scale. After we read The Five Love Languages, we realized the importance of understanding and meeting each other’s language. Quality time and words of encouragement were first for Jewls. Julie was very easy to please, although her list of things to fix around the house could get quite long.
I love cakes, so on one of her birthdays I got her three cakes. One we shared with the radio staff, the other with close family, and the third with people at the local church. She laughed and made fun of me and my cake extravaganza. I think that was six years ago.
As for Timi, he loved wrapping things for his mami. He actually loved gift giving. He would grab one of my newspapers and wrap one of his toys and present it to Julie. He also loved giving flowers. I was surprised when Timi would just pick a flower from our garden and say, “This is for you, mami.” Recently he had begun picking flowers for little Anahi.
Julie loved her orchids and being outdoors. She would walk around the house, with Anahi in a front pack, checking out her plants and finding out if there was a new flower bud. I remember her telling me with a big smile, “Norb, this flower only blooms once a year.” She had a way of enjoying the moment.
Julie, three months have gone by since that dark morning when, in just a matter of seconds, our lives were ripped apart. You went to glory, to our eternal home, while I survived on this side. I would have preferred to go be with our Lord as well. I would give anything to have you and Timothy back, but I know that it’s not possible right now.
And Julie, this morning I will not be able to fix you breakfast. I would if God would let me bring it to you, but I know that you are eating at the King’s table. It still does not seem right that you are not here to celebrate. I realize, also, that you have stopped aging, and I am a bit jealous. I am trying to stay in shape for when we meet again, so that I can keep up with you. Although maybe I should get used to living without worrying about how old I am. Living life fully today is what matters.
I love you, Julie, and I am looking forward to our heavenly reunion one day.
Happy birthday, with love,
Norb and your sweet Anahi