A New Chapter

I write a lot on this website about our journey through grief after Andy’s passing. By sharing stories of Andy and of our struggles, I hope to help others going through similar circumstances feel a little less alone. I know that many of the posts here are emotional and difficult to read – they can be challenging to write too.

Because of that, I felt like I needed another blog to share the happier stories and events in our family. You can find it at  “Then Lucy Said…” chronicles our daily life in short essays and snippets of conversations. It’s is about the incredible frustrations and joys of motherhood. It’s about the humor of every day and sometimes even the sadness of the past. Simply, it’s about each day that I get to spend with Andy’s siblings, Lucy and Will.

“Andy’s Army” will still be here, filled with SMA-related information, awareness/fundraising events, and, most importantly, memories of Andy.

Thank you for sharing our journey with us for the past four years – we look forward to continuing it with you!

–Audra Perry Butler

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3 Responses to A New Chapter

  1. Rosemary Perry says:

    This certainly is a new chapter in your lives and ours, too. We are so excited for your family as Will and Lucy become best buddies! Our Angel Andy will always be right there watching over them.

  2. Colleen Maroney says:

    Hi Audra,
    I have to take a moment to reach out to you….you thanked us for sharing your journey in this post, but I can not express my thanks to you, for pouring your truth out in such a loving, healthy way. I cried during more than half of them…my friend just lost her 7 week old son to SMA, on October 26th, 2013. It was their 2nd child. Their 1st, is a 3yr. old girl who is fine. My friend mentioned your blog to me while back; saying that she wished she could articulate her own emotions and thoughts the way you do. She’s started journaling and she has a good support system. Earlier this week, we had quite a storm here in Michigan, my work even closed for a couple days so I used the time to start from the beginning of your blog, as my friend suggested. She said that was the most relevant to where she is now….well, I couldn’t stop, I’ve read your entire archive. I had my 2nd child, a son, named William, ironically, on May 18th, 2013. My 1st is 5yrs. old. Our girls AND boys were supposed to grow up together. God has a different plan. I think I could and still can truly feel my friends despair, deeply. I’m so thankful to read your story and to be reassured that everything I think and worry about will be ok. So many of your posts felt like I was reading my own thoughts or reliving a conversation between my friend and I. It is wonderful to read about the time you had with Andy here on Earth and to hear about the light Lucy and William give you and your husband everyday. I’ll be checking out your thenLucysaid blog next. I know that my friends will be blessed with an addition of their own in due time. I just feel it with everything in me. They will probably take the natural conception route with the test at 11 wks., as you did. When my friend spoke about that plan a few weeks ago, I had great anxiety for the testing, the waiting, the decisions she and her husband may have to make, but knowing that you’ve went through it all so capably, even twice; I have relief that my friends will have the same chance to experience the miracle of birth again. Thanks again for sharing your journey. Please know that you’re words are being heard and felt for that matter. Happy New Year to you and the Army!

  3. admin says:

    Thank you for taking the time to comment. It means more than I can say to know that the words I’ve written have helped another family through this horror and perhaps given them some hope too. I think that’s the most important thing actually – keeping the light of hope shining in your heart when everything that surrounds you seems to be lost in the blackness. My heart breaks for your friend – I know where she is right now, and it’s a dark, lonely place. She is lucky to have your support. And, she should know that her son’s life counts. He will always be a part of her family – and, more than that, a living, enduring part of her. SMA takes so much from us – too much – but we can’t allow it to take everything. As we rebuilt our lives and family, that’s actually what my husband and I used as a mantra – “SMA doesn’t get to win.” Nothing about this journey is easy, but if our kids had the strength to face it, we can too. Please know that I’m in your friends corner (with all of Andy’s Army too). Much love, Audra

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