Greetings to all! Well, as Ali and I approach our six-year anniversary and the birth of our family, on July 12th it’s hard to believe it’s already been six years. I know for a lot of you that may not be along time, but for me in my youthfulness, wink wink, it is one-sixth of my whole life, and that is a lot to me. I am married to the most amazing woman that God has ever kissed this earth with. She truly embodies everything it means to be a woman, wife, mother, daughter, sister and friend. She does it with such love, grace, gentleness, humor and sincerity that it is very easy for anyone, but especially me to love her and desire to serve her everyday. It has been a true honor, joy and blessing to be able to journey hand in hand for the last few years and I look forward to many more to come. God has taken us on a variety of road trips over the past six years that we were unprepared for at such a young age, but with each situation God always provided us with the grace and love to weather each storm, which is what gives us our confidence today as we stand in the midst of this new road and new squall. Which leads me to my feelings of the day, or the past couple days I should say.
As I woke up yesterday morning my heart was heavy, just missing and longing for Cate. I was in the shower and I just couldn’t get her off my mind. Ali walked in, my family has NO issues with personal space or busting in on people in the bathroom and Ali began doing whatever women do in the bathroom that takes FOREVER and I said to her over the shower, “I really miss Cate today,” to which she replied, I have too. She went on to say that the past two days had been very difficult for her. We went throughout our day yesterday in a quiet respectfulness of each others processing time. There is not much to “say” right now, we have said we miss her, we have said we’re sad, we have said we’re angry. We are beginning to run out of “new” words to describe the way we feel right now.
I woke up this morning, LATE, rushed out of the door and began my morning commute to work. The passage that kept returning to my mind was from Genesis 2:24, “Therefore a man leaves his father and mother, and cleaves to his wife, and the two become one flesh.” Pope John Paul II called the sacrament of marriage the “primordial sacrament,” because the purpose of a sacrament is reveal, to make known, or to make present a hidden mystery of God. Ali and I’s marriage, some days more than others, reveals a hidden mystery of God to each other first and secondly to the world. She and I are united in a similar, yet far reaching way, as the Holy Trinity is united. Therefore, our hearts will feel the same, will beat in unison, morn in unison, and hopefully heal in unison. But, for this to happen we must create an environment for that to happen. We must take time to nourish our marriage.
The other night Ali and I got the chance to go out to dinner in Lafayette to one of our favorite restaurants. We ate EVERYTHING that we enjoyed to eat, shared a GREAT bottle of wine, but as good as the food and wine were, it was not was those ingredients that made the dinner wonderful and life giving. What made the dinner wonderful for me was that Ali and I got to sit in each other’s company and not have to talk about Ecmo machines, blood transfusions or funeral preparations. We just got to enjoy each others companionship, laughter, and life. It was truly an Oasis in this desert time and reminded me that we must continue to do this for our sanity and for our marriage. It is difficult with children, as many of you know, to take time for yourselves, but it is a necessary ingredient for us to have a solid marriage, especially as the storm winds blow hard against our unity. I don’t want the winds to tear apart what we have works so hard to unite and by the grace of God they will not. We will cleave to our God and to each other during this storm knowing with confidence and hope that His Grace is sufficient. Summer is fading fast and Ali, being a teacher, knows that hers is coming to an abrupt end VERY quickly, but we are trying to sketch out a weekend where we can “retreat” just her and I to refocus our marriage and our family so that our vision might be united as we travel down this path together as a husband and a wife. Please pray that our destination may be clear and our time relaxing, refreshing, and visionary.
We have started the “Thank You Note” process, which will take a while, but we have started. We are extremely grateful for everyone who has sent flowers, food, and financial support for our family with medical and funeral expenses. We are; however, unable to find out the names of all of you who have so generously contributed to the account at Chase in honor of Cate and our family. We have tried, but the way that they handle deposits at the Chase it is impossible. If you have contributed and would like to make us aware of your donation you can either send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or send me something in the mail to
P.O. Box 52978, Lafayette, La 70578 with your address information. We do not want people to think that we are ungrateful for your generosities we just are unable to get anymore information from the bank. We hope that you understand.
We love you all very much and are extremely grateful for the continued support and prayers for our family. May God continue to lavish on each one of you and your families: let us all stand united! Much Love, The Cantrells