Aunt Sue

21 Nov

Back in the day, say around 1981, new parents didn’t know if they were going to have a boy or a girl. My big brother Mike and his wife Tana were expecting their 3rd child and I was expecting my first. Mike had already gotten his boys – Jon and Dave were a vibrant part of the Kura clan. However, Tana really wanted her girl. And on January 3, 1981, she got her wish. Allison Page Kura was born and Tana was so excited! And Grandpa and Grandma Kura finally had a granddaughter to dote on. Two months later, my firstborn entered the world – Tara Kristine. Allie and Tara were dedicated at The Chapel together, they sang in church programs together, they became each other’s first best friends J Even as a little one, Allie was determined, feisty, chatty and loving. Allie and Tara would bake cookies and feed the ducks with Grandma Kura, they would each excel in athletics which allowed Grandpa Kura to boast. And as they grew into young women, they celebrated their own marriages with the other serving as bridesmaid. Allie was the first of the two girls to have a child and Allie was so proud of her precious first born, Paige. When Hayleigh and Mollie arrived, Allie and Adam were complete. Tara and James had their 3 children too – all boys. Family birthday parties were always interesting with doll babies and super heroes trying to mix. Yet Allie and Tara continued to develop their familial bond and even more important, their friendship and love for each other.

When Allie was diagnosed, I remember thinking that this just wasn’t possible. The health conscious exercise fanatic couldn’t have a life threatening disease. Yet, we all watched as leukemia took from Allie on a merciless pursuit. In the midst of it all, Allie didn’t lose her determination, her feistiness and especially her ability to love. We have all seen the word ‘intentional’ used to describe Allison. She was intentional in her clinging to life. She didn’t like feeling helpless, she hated being an observer of life rather than an active participant. But even in the midst of the battle, Allie fought on with such determination. She sought treatments, she continued to try various health supplements and she sought her Lord.

On one of the last times my Tara would see Allison, we were sitting in her living room and some of us were talking while sorting through Allie’s medications. I looked over at the two cousins, one lying on the couch, the other sitting on the floor beside her. I was touched by the intimate conversation taking place between two ‘first best friends’. They were talking of hopes and dreams, lost chances and praying together. There were promises made and kisses exchanged. My heart broke knowing the sorrow that was to come yet encouraged by the final moments of this friendship.

As I watch my brother and sister in law struggle through a loss no parent should ever experience, I am touched by how deeply they loved Allie and how deeply she loved her parents. I have memories of watching my nephew David literally carrying Allie wherever she needed to be. I saw her Aunt Tara lovingly stroke Allie’s feet when that was the only place on her body that didn’t hurt. I saw her friends serving her with such love and compassion that goes beyond superficial friendships. I have seen her husband and precious girls finding strength in knowing just how deeply loved Allison felt in her final months.

Thank you for continuing to pray for our family as we walk the path of grief. Unfortunately, it’s a path no one can walk for us. But it’s a journey that needs companions. Walk along side this young family with your prayers, support, time and love. Lift up her parents and extended family when God brings them to your heart and mind. There is deep pain and sorrow yet we all know that Allie wouldn’t want us to grieve forever. She would want us to get up, get moving on with life and to look at every relationship with eyes looking to eternity.

Aunt Sue




13 Responses to “Aunt Sue”

  1. Shirley Kiernan November 21, 2013 at 8:46 pm #

    I feel that I know you after reading all of your posts on this blog. Thank you for sharing and reminding us to continue supporting Allie’s family in thought and prayer.

  2. Tricia November 22, 2013 at 6:17 pm #

    I always looked for “aunt Sues” thoughts! I will continue to pray for all of you!

  3. lori habeck November 23, 2013 at 11:10 am #

    Thank you for the post “Aunt Sue”. I am continuing to thing about and pray for your entire family.

    • lori habeck November 23, 2013 at 11:10 am #

      “think” not “thing” :)

  4. margie stoller November 24, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

    Aunt Sue, You’ve always write the perfect words. And now, once again, your words are a blessing to all of us. Allie was fortunate to have you close and as I understand, as a “special, fun” aunt.
    Thank you for your reminder today (as if I need a reminder) to pray for Mike, Tana, Adam and the girls. they are often in my thoughts- as is dear Allie.

    • Liz in Austin November 29, 2013 at 11:07 am #

      This Thanksgiving Season, I am Thankful that I had the opportunity and honor to know Allie, even if so, so brief. She is in my thoughts daily as are you, her dear family, in my prayers. LIZ

  5. Lindsey Ritsema December 2, 2013 at 10:38 pm #

    Thank you, Aunt Sue, for sharing about your family’s closeness and bond that your daughter and Allie had. It was so great to see pictures from their childhood. We keep praying for you all!!!

  6. Kelly Turner December 8, 2013 at 11:10 pm #

    Dear Adam,

    You don’t really know me but I have met you at Silver Lake a number of times. I knew Allie from exercise class at Christ Community Chapel.
    I have been deeply touched by your journey and know how much pain you must be experiencing. I have experienced my own losses and just wanted to let you know that while life does go back to a “new normal”, it doesn’t mean that your beautiful wife has been forgotten. It must seem that everyone just goes on with their lives and you are adjusting to so many new things and dealing with deep grief at the same time. I believe that God allows life to move on to help us heal and to show us that there is joy in the journey…even a hard journey such as yours.

    I pray for you and the girls so often and know so many others do as well. My prayer for you is that you will choose to find JOY this Christmas season. Allow yourself to feel happiness and know that God desires for you to be happy even in the midst of such deep sadness.

    May you have a blessed Christmas season and God bless you all.

  7. Maggie Johns December 16, 2013 at 9:41 am #

    Continuing to pray for you all as often as the Lord lays it on my heart – which is often! Thank you Aunt Sue for this reflection.

  8. Beckie December 21, 2013 at 3:52 pm #

    Adam, I look at this blog every day. I hope you and the girls are doing well. I know the holiday seasons stir up alot more emotions. Stay strong as I know you ALL will. Merry Christmas to all of you.

  9. Jill January 3, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

    Been thinking a lot of Allie today as it is her birthday! Sending lots of love your way!

  10. Sabrina January 15, 2014 at 11:49 pm #

    Have been thinking about you lately..wondering how you are and what your thoughts are…hope that you are doing well..

  11. Jamie Williams February 4, 2014 at 10:09 pm #

    Thinking of you all. I hope you are all doing well. I think of you all and sweet Allie often. She was remarkable and is so dearly missed by me and all those that knew her. XO – Jamie

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