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“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: time to be born, and a time to die…” Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

 

When I used to think about this verse, I never really thought about what it was telling me.  I knew there was a time to be born and a time to die but I always felt like we were born and lived a big, long life then it was “the time to die.” It was never part of “my” plan to have to understand the time to die part of that scripture. I said all this to tell you a story….

Five years, ten months, and eighteen days ago I was living life like it was my turn to understand the “time to live” part of life.  I was close to finishing college, I had one son out of college, my daughter was about to graduate college, and I had two amazing little guys.  One day later my world was ripped apart. My daughter, who was one month away from her 23rdbirthday and three months away from college graduation, went to the doctor for a headache and was diagnosed, that day, with a colloid cyst in the middle of her brain.  Long story short she went to the hospital and 8 days later she died.  I spent the next year completely checked out of life.  I knew I wanted her life to have meaning and my sister expressed the desire to start a nonprofit in Shelby’s honor with the intention of mentoring girls/women, I thought it was a great idea who doesn’t want to be part of helping others?  

Since I lived in a fog, barely functioning, I didn’t realize exactly what that looked like or what that even meant.  I knew I wanted people to always remember Shelby and I have always wanted to help people but that was the extent of what I had the capacity for.  There was no way I was capable of helping anyone at that point. It took about five years and a few months to bring me to the point of complete understanding and surrender to the plan and purpose God has for my life. 

God brought me to a point of understanding exactly what He wanted to come from the legacy of Shelby’s life.  The mission of The Shelby Center has grown and developed over the past almost six years to where we are now.  We started out as me hesitantly agreeing to mentoring women to surrendering to a life long calling of serving people in pain.  I look back and see that I couldn’t see what Tami saw but now I see such a beautiful picture of God’s grace and mercy bringing us to this place. I have spent my life knowing that God had a plan for me but He just allowed me to wake up and see what that plan is….Losing Shelby was by far the hardest thing I have lived through but God does bring beauty from pain. I miss her every single second of every single day and I am so thankful that her life has such a bigger purpose than “a time to die.” 

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https://gofund.me/bb2094b1 In 2018 my daughter Shelby was one month away from her 23rd birthday and three months away from college graduation. She went to the doctor for a headache and was diagnosed,

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