What’s In a Name

A handful of people have asked about the title of my blog.  Most likely haven’t given it any thought, but for some people who spend their lives searching for missing, they wonder why it isn’t titled ‘Finding Austin’ and I had trouble articulating my reasons.  But here goes.  
I say ‘Losing Austin’ because it was a process that started much earlier than June of 2007.  I think it started quite a few years before, as he faced some things that kids shouldn’t have to, but many do, including unexplained physical pain, and family issues that caused emotional pain.  I’ve hesitated to ever put that thought into writing, but it’s not to point blame.  It’s my view of when we started losing him.  We lost him a little more years later when injury and heartache compounded, and from that point never seemed to really find him again.  He was standing in front of us, but we didn’t see all that was really there.  
I say ‘Losing Austin’ because I feel some of the blame of not catching him before he was gone.  
I say ‘Losing Austin’ because that’s the starting point of this journey.  
‘Finding Austin’ sounds to me that all our hope and faith resides around that event.  We pray for it, hope for it, believe on it, but our real hope is in God’s faithfulness regardless. 
‘Finding Austin’ would say, to me anyway, that our focus is on finding him and our story stops there.  I pray that I one day write about this crazy significant point.  But our story doesn’t and can’t end there.  Our story is about our response to losing him, and being called to work through it.
‘Finding Austin’ would seem to say that I really contribute to efforts to find him.  I don’t even know how at this point.  
‘Finding Austin’ would seem to signify that once we find him, all is well.  But all will not be well, it won’t bring that magical mythical “closure” that many goodheartedly say we need.  When we no longer have a missing loved one, new challenges begin, and new healing can begin.  Begin is the key word. 
‘Finding Austin’ might keep me mentally and emotionally focused on that goal, almost stuck until we reached it.  I didn’t need a reminder of our goal; it’s never far from mind.  What I needed was an honest look at where I’ve been, to help direct where I’m going.  
I believe and hope that there will be a post titled ‘Finding Austin’ one day soon.  What I do know, is that he was never lost to God, has been in his hands always.  We just get to keep working on filling in the details.

Isaiah 41:10  fear not, for I am with you;  be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you,  I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Austin, We Will Always Remember

As the five year mark of Austin being missing approaches, so did time for me to write another guest post on Time’s Up.  I shared some thoughts and hope you’ll visit there and read them.

Then, check out ‘About Austin’ and help us remember him over the next few weeks especially.  Milestones are difficult, but also give us the chance to remember and share more about him.

Thanks for letting me share my journey. 

Austin, we will always remember.

Wild Ride in Cambodia

Very few people actually seem to have any memory of Austin.  Or so it feels some days, when the support we get is mainly from people we’ve known in more recent years.  So it’s really nice from time to time to hear someone say his name, or simply share a thought about him.  One comment on his birthday that really made me smile was “I miss that guy” from someone I’m introducing you to today.

In part because he remembers Austin, and in part because he’s an author and now world traveler, and is kinda what I want to be when I grow up!  Ryan and I shared a few of those oh so fun teen years, and we recently reconnected through the magic of Facebook.  He’s pretty cool, and I wanted to share his story with you today because I’m excited to follow the journey he’s taking and think you’ll enjoy it too.

The remnants of  their 4 bedroom house.

Ryan and his family recently left for Cambodia, and he’s taking us with him on the adventure through his writing.  As I sit here in my office, wishing I was having an adventure, I’m hoping his provides some inspiration to you and I both.

Can’t wait to read more!

Visit his blog.

and check out his book.