Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Today is Deanna's Birthday. She is $^ years old. She is every bit as beautiful today as the day we married. She has invested so much of herself in our children. They each are much of who they are because of their mother. On a day that is a celebration, it is tarnished a bit, because Beej wasn't here to bring her breakfast in bed (remember our tradition?).

Parents and siblings birthday's were days he not only didn't mind getting up early for, he did it pretty faithfully. He liked to "make" breakfast for us. Okay, so "making" breakfast meant pouring cereal, or toasting the bagel and smearing cream cheese on it, but in today's world that still counts.

We have certainly become an "easy cheese" society. And that was one of Beej's favorite foods. Deanna would buy it at the grocery, and he'd find it upon her return home. Later, he would put it on the shelf...with just enough left to not throw it away, or to allow him to say, "I didn't eat it all" (I can't tell you how many almost empty cans I found on the shelf through the years).

He enjoyed putting thought into gift buying. When he bought you something, you knew he hadn't just picked something up. He looked for just the right thing... at least in his mind. Yes, I got a pink shirt for Father's Day. Not something I would have chosen, but something I now wear proudly, because Beej thought it was a good idea.

Deanna has been suffering from not knowing for sure how Beej viewed her. She knows that he loved her, and that as his mother, there was a bond there. But his absence and corresponding silence causes each of us to wonder from time to time where we stood, with one we loved so much.

Beej treated his mother with the utmost respect (well, most of the time). He freely hugged and kissed her in public... never shying away out of embarrassment. He was sensitive to her feelings, and wanted to make her happy. He strived to please her, and found joy in her compliments. He had a much better relationship with his mom than many of the friends or acquaintances he spoke of. He was thankful for her. He looked up to her. He carried a glow with him when he talked about her, just as she did for the nine months she carried him. Plus the almost 16 years she molded him.
He often accompanied her to the store, or movies, or King's Island (they both loved roller coasters). He gave more love to her in those years than some mother's see in a lifetime.

It's just that she wants...more. I wish I could give her the more that he cannot. She deserves it. Believe me when I say, she has earned it.

I honestly believe that the Lord Jesus will fill that seemingly unquenchable and abiding ache, in a way that only the (a) Son (son) can.

Happy Birthday my love! I am so thankful for you and your influence on our children.

I love you more than words can convey,


Please know that we continue to lift up the requests that you post on this site. We are humbled and blessed that you would share them here.

Please pray for Lauren as she is having one of her most difficult weeks at school, to date. So much due, still behind and playing catch up. She covets your prayer support.


At 6:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

when i faced a great loss almost 2 yrs. ago, i was lead in another direction for healing. i went to russia and adopted from an orphanage. you CAN'T imagine the poverty. there are many more boys available for adoption - many reasons. russia has since changed adoption law because about 10 adoptees have been murdered by U.S. parents. the process is not easy. but i can say that thru the entire process, i was lead by the holy spirit. i could not say no, it was out of my hands. an agency in INDY handles everything, the director is a russian immigrant. bj cannot be replaced but there are children who need homes and love - and you have both. please consider.

At 6:52 AM, Blogger brobrad said...

Thank you Brent...Deanna, I pray that memories will bring you laughter along with the tears today. I look forward to celebrating with you tomorrow night and pray the Lord's comfort for you today.

At 7:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Birthday blessings to you, Deanna.

Anne (Marion)

At 8:09 AM, Blogger Kalliopi Psalm said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!

At 8:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a beautiful birthday gift for Deanna to have her husband write such wonderful things about her. I am always moved to tears when I visit each day. My heart aches for you. I will be saying extra prayers for you today. I do not know your family, but through this blog I feel like I know you. What a wonderful testimony to the love a mother gives her son that he is not ashamed to show his love for her in public. That says so much. What a wonderful testimony that an entire family has grown to love the Lord so much and rely on Him because of the love they found from their mother (and father). I can only pray that my daughters feel the same about me. I am in awe of your family and strive to make my life a mirror of yours, with Christ always at the center. Happy Birthday Deanna!
Your sister in Christ,
Noblesville, IN

At 8:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna! You are such a loving person and I always see you smiling. You're in my prayers!

At 8:16 AM, Blogger Praying in Pink said...

Birthday Blessings and deep love from each one of us, Deanna. Over the past few weeks, I have looked to your example of a mother's heart so often--as well as to the example of enduring love that your entire family demonstrates. We will certainly be lifting up Lauren as well during her "crunch" time. I know the Lord will honor her hard work and commitment to Him. Sending His tender love--wrapped in pink, of course. . .

Tom, Marti, Kristen, Katherine (Kat!), Andrew, Karissa, and Melanie

At 8:32 AM, Blogger Kim Mierau said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Deanna! I will be praying for Jesus to minister all the more to you especially today. May you find new revelations of faith and healing as He continues to show you His path. You are an incredible woman, a beautiful light to help guide your family. Brent, thank you for your kind, honest words and your willingness to come here everday and be vulnerable. I love you all. *Kim
Lauren, when you get stressed this week, come find me. I'll count in that special way for you. :)

At 8:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wishing you a very blessed Birthday Deanna!

The Goodwin family

At 8:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have a Blessed Birthday, Deanna -- Brent, I hope you made her breakfast in bed - sounds like a tradition worth hanging on to! Your words are beautiful and are an expression of feelings so often felt, but seldom shared between couples.

Lauren, I lift you up today and this week, especially. Please know that I am praying for you to have renewed strength with each task, a sense of pride for continuing your studies through such a difficult time, and the knowledge that the Lord is there for you to lean on. Take one step at a time, try not to be overwhelmed. Much love to you this week.

At 8:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a prayer request. My cousin's daughter gave birth her first baby, a boy, the day before Thanksgiving. The baby's name is Ryan Patrick. He has come into our world too early and is in critical condition. His lungs are not developed and he is having great difficulty breathing which in turn has caused his blood work to not be good....lack of oxygen. Please pray for baby Ryan. He and his family really need our prayers. Thank you.

Happy Birthday, Deanna!

At 9:22 AM, Blogger Sherry Page said...

Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you! God has given you a wonderful life to celebrate.I pray that you will feel the love comfort and peace of God family and friends. Your Gods gift to everyone around you,they all see Jesus in you and want to be around you. Your infulence for Jesus reaches all those around you!
Love ya

At 9:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

happy birthday deanna! ill be praying for you all today! i especially can feel for lauren. i go to iupui too and im also starting to feel the pressure. not nearly as much as she is im sure, but its still there. glad to see you all back at church sunday, and glad you all went down to louisiana.
love you all,
amanda andrews.

At 9:39 AM, Blogger LisaTeegarden said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEANNA! I also look forward to "Celebrating" with you and Brent tomorrow evening. You trully are a wonderful mother...something I will forever miss being. I know Beej thought so much of you...and Brent. God surely blessed you as parents. I LOVE YOU BOTH...HAPPY HAPPY YOUR DAY, DEANNA. Lisa (sis)

At 9:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

please pray for Lattany who i have seen post on this website. she was motivated by BJ to continue to do missions work. she recently returned home from a missions trip and has suffered from uncontrollable coughing fits and a torn rib muscle from the coughing. they aren't sure what is causing her airway inflammation, but please pray for her healing and comfort at this time. her mom reported on a website i follow that she is finally able to sleep a bit more now that they have put her on narcotics. please pray for her healing. thanks.

At 9:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish you the best this day. God bless.

In Christ,
Ben Hackler

At 9:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!
With love,
Lauren Szabo

At 10:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy birthday Mom!!!!!!!!! Please know that you are always being lifted up, each one of you.
Lauren, I know that our God is faithful and that He will guide you and give you peace and the ability to finish out this semester.

At 10:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Best Wishes for a day filled with love and peace, Deanna. It's so difficult on days that are meant to be celebrated to not feel the pain of the "new normal". The things we cannot have we long for all the more. My heart aches for you and yet I pray that somehow you will be able to remember with some joy the fun traditions you all shared. May you feel God's loving arms wrapped around you extra tight today...I know that Brent seems to have enough love for you to definitely go around and around your heart and comfort you this day. I will also be praying for Lauren, it brings back such memories of stress in college right before the holidays, and she's dealing with so much more.

Love to you all.

At 11:03 AM, Blogger Aunt Maralyn & Uncle Ray said...

What a beautiful tribute to Deanna! You are both so special. In case Brent doesn't tell you who come to this web site,December ist is his birthday.
Traditions are so special. I still think about the traditions in our collective family that are no more for various reasons. The times that we could all get together for all of the special occasions in our lives are very good memories.
Deanna, Happy Birthday on your special day. I pray the Lord gives you an extra special blessing today.
Lauren, you are always in our prayers.
Aunt Maralyn

At 11:18 AM, Blogger Nic and Jen said...

Happy Birthday Deanna. I know this day must be so hard for you. Brent, you said such beautiful things about your wife. I know I don't know you guys personally, but I can bet that BJ thought the world of his mom. It shows by all your posts and descriptions of his personality. Know that many are praying for you, and also will be lifting Lauren up in their prayers as well. I feel at such a loss for words most of the time. My words are not adequate. The Lord is holding you and He will provide you the strength to get through every day.
Love, Jennifer WA

At 11:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!
From your Awe Star Family!

At 11:52 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Happy Birthday Deanna. I pray that today is a day filled with joy and the knowledge that you were the best that Beej could have ever wanted in a mom. May the Lord fill that void that Brent spoke of with His ever faithful and never ending love and comfort. May He reveal hidden treasure to you.
Brent describes Beej's love for you so well
How refreshing to see and hear a husband speak of his wife with such love and affection,the Lord has truely blessed you Deanna.
And how blessed you were/are to have children who openly show their love for their mother.

Lauren lifting you up to our Father for strength and endurance for this week of study.

In His Love

At 11:55 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

May I ask for prayer from this wonderful "blog family" ? I got news last week that my mum (75) has been having mini strokes, she's had a visit with the neuro dr and has to go and have an MRI, she has NO relationship with our Lord. Until I gain residency and a green card I am unable to leave the country, and if I do I can't return for 10 years. I'm doing my best not to worry, but it's not easy.
Also yesterday we took Hollie for her psychological test for entry into the school and we have another appointment on Saturday and Hollie has decided to not be copoperative, please keep this situation in your prayers, we want the Lord's will in this situation, and I have to say that all of this is causing a huge drain on our marriage....

Ih His Love

At 12:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!!!! Mothers are such special people. I can't imagine what life would be like without my Mom. Your kids are so blessed to have a Mother who loves the LORD with all her heart. Have a great birthday!

At 12:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I LOVE this site. It is such a blessing to me every day I read it. Thank you for the example that you all set for us.
Happy $^th birthday Deanna. That is the same age as my mom and I have a younger sister who is BJ's age. I cannot imagine what today is like for you but I can promise to support you in prayers.
I love you all very much.

At 12:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Deanna, may you have a blessed birthday. While the greetings of family and friends on this blog cannot minimize the loss of BJ's voice, may you find comfort and joy in knowing that you are dearly loved and appreciated by us all. I know that BJ loved and respected you so much. His actions around you at the Higgins reunion in Wisconsin spoke volumes of the closeness of your relationship. May you find peace today in knowing that you were faithful to your calling as a mother in raising a young man who put God first and showed his love and care for others around him. The imprint on BJ's life from the love poured into him from his mom (and his dad) was evident. May you feel the warmth of the Father's loving embrace today. Happy Birthday!


P.S. Lauren, being at the end of the semester myself with all of the papers, exams and projects that come with that, I am remembering you especially in my prayers that you will experience God's strength and grace in abundance as you burn the midnight oil . . . and then some!

At 1:24 PM, Blogger Derek Tucker said...

It was so awesome to be able to spend Thanksgiving with you guys in Louisiana. I wish we could spend so much more time together...thus is life I suppose. What an unforgettable experience to be able to serve by your sides, I was extremely blessed through it all. It was also great to get to know some other incredible people from Indiana.

Aunt Deanna, I am a son of an incredible mother just like BJ was. I know how difficult-actually very impossible-it is to express to my mom in words or actions how much she means to me. Saying "I love you" or "thanks for everything" will never suffice for the sacrifice, love, and tears that a great mother poors into a child/son. I am sure that BJ had this same feeling of unableness to fully express to you how much you meant to him. You, Brent and Lauren and Whitney are such an inspiration to me in so many ways. Your love for your family is very evident, especially during this time. I thank you so much for living your life in the way that you do, and being the example that you are. I will be praying for you today and everyday. I hope you truly experience a happy and blessed birthday.
I love y'all

At 1:27 PM, Blogger tryoumans said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEANNA!! We continue to thank you guys for the daily posts and pray for you guys as you continue to heal from the loss of BJ. Have a great day and safe travels this weekend.

Todd, Jes & Andrew Y.

At 2:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna! I hope you have a blessed day and feel God's presence near during a day that must be filled with both joy and sorrow.

Higgins family,
It was such a pleasure and a privilege to work with you all in Louisiana. Your genuine love for God is clear in the work you do, the songs you sing, and the words you speak. Thank you for working alongside all of us who were on the trip. It was a true blessing to have you all there.

By the way, I wanted to share with you about a classmate I have here at college. Yesterday, she told me she had seen a commercial about BJ on WISH-TV 8 while she was back home during Thanksgiving break. She said that she recognized BJ and knew about the situation because I had worn my "Pray for BJ" shirt to class and shared with her about BJ. She said that when she saw the commercial, she told her Mom and the rest of her family that she knew about BJ from me and told them about BJ. She is a Christian, but her family is not. I hope and pray that God can and will use this opportunity for her to further share God's love with her family through BJ's life story.

At 2:12 PM, Blogger a schmaltzee life said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!!!

I pray that your heart would be full today with precious memories...and that you would rest in the comfort of knowing how much BJ adored you.

I know i told you this before...but i was so touched by watching you and him in Baraboo. You just seemed to really enjoy each other. He was so sweet and tender with you...and you just seemed to really adore him. My heart lept ahead in time...hoping that i would have that kind of closeness with my girls when they are teens. A genuine affection...adoration... love and respect.

When kids are little they just gobble you up as parents.. more hugs...more piggy back rides...more tickles...more kisses....more of just being together. But it seems that some times when they grow older...pre-teen...teen years...they want less parent time...less of family stuff!

I think it is so great the closeness that your whole family has... Lauren...Whit...Bj...You and Brent... all seem to have that genuine "real" love for each other.

What a great example of Jesus love... 'real' love... extravagant love!!

Here is a nifty verse!

"Watch what God does and then do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love.
Observe how Christ loves us.
His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn't love in order to get something from us...but to give everything of himself to us.
LOVE LIKE THAT!" Ephesians 5:1-2

Thanks for keeping company with Jesus...and loving extravagantly!!! I know BJ as well as the rest of your family has been blessed and impacted by your love!

Hugs to you all.

At 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Mrs. Higgins. You are such an inspiration to me as a mother. I pray that you have a blessed birthday full of memories and new knowledge. Thinking of you.

Because of HIM,

Nicole, Eagle River AK

At 3:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!
Still praying for all of you.
Karen in NC

At 3:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna! I think the description Brent gave of you and BJ said it all. What a special relationship he had with both of you, as he did with the Lord. Never ashamed to show his real feelings. That is a real man in my book! It is easy to see Beej in both of you. How you care about each other and your family, it shows in everything you do and say.
I know these days are tough. Just take each one at a time. You have many beautiful memories, not all parents have that. Our son left us very suddenly of his own will so I try to focus on only the good memories. Holidays are the toughest. I'm praying for you today and hope you have a very special evening. I'm lifting up Lauren to. My daughter is working 2 jobs and going to college and has 3 little girls at home. God is good all the time! Love you guys!

At 4:07 PM, Blogger Ashley Reagan said...

Happy Birthday Mom! I love you and I hope you have a wonderful, blessed day.

At 4:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday, Deanna!
Hudson, OH

At 4:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!

Rachel Burkholder

At 5:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

happy birthday!

At 5:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy sweet, blessed birthday Deanna!! Treasure the memories of the past and create new ones for the future!! Thank you Brent for letting us "see" BJ again through his love for his mom. Enjoy your special day!!

Praying in pink for all of you, keep the strength Lauren and trust in God's timing and peace...He will see you through! His timing is perfect...don't focus on the world's timing.

Praying in pink for Baby Ryan...the prayer that never fails...Your Will Be Done!!!

Praying in Pink for Linda R. If you need to talk, you can either email me or messenger me, I will turn it on. I know writing always helps me unload and I am hear to listen/read, hon!! God bless!

Happy Birthday again Deanna!!


Linda Anderson
Willows, California

At 5:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How are all of you doing? Havnt Bloged for along time. Im always reading thow. I hope Deanna has a great Birthday. Another reason to give thanks in our LORD
Julie Meils
prayers always comming

At 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday my friend,
I love you
We so enjoyed the time we spent together.
Your friend,

At 6:15 PM, Blogger Lynn Andrews said...

Happy birthday, Deanna! I pray that precious memories and the love you are surrounded by will give you peace and joy today, and everyday!

Lifting up Lauren as she "crunches" this week. Linda R. - praying the Lord will provide in your time of need. And, prayers of healing for Baby Ryan.

Blessings to all of you who share your love and faith here on this blog.

Macon, GA

At 6:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!!!

Jonathan Haag

At 7:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am frequently online and am always seeing this, "Pray for BJ" link on xanga, so I decided to see what it's all about tonight. As I started reading, especially the profile part, I was drawn to tears. You see, I went on a mission trip this past summer, too. And it just wasn't any mission trip. My group and I went from door to door sharing the gospel. By the end of the nine days that I was on the trip, 743 people had excepted Christ. It was too amazing for words. God is so great. The mission trip was in Peru. I love Peru and am now considering going back this next summer. Because of BJ's story and how it relates to me, I will dedicate praying for your family. This story has affected me more than you can imagine.
God bless,
Louisville, KY

At 7:19 PM, Blogger John said...

I have been faithfully reading your post and praying for your family for months now. Your unfailing faith throughout everything has really helped me in coming to have a closer relationship with God and with Jesus. I want you to know that and I want to thank you for that.

I also want to ask for your prayers as well. Both my girlfriend and I have been fighting very rare illnesses for many years. God and Jesus have truly blessed us with each other, and have carried us through some amazing ordeals. Now, as I watch her struggle with her health, I know she is growing weary. Please, pray for her health to improve, for her to stay strong and be joyful, and for her to grow in her faith and trust in God and Jesus Christ as well. She is the strongest person I have ever met, yet I know she must heal and find rest and joy in her life, because she can't continue like this forever. Please help me lift her up in prayer.

Please continue to stay strong and walk in faith. You have been a light to many.

At 8:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are so thoughtful, the way you compliment your wife and children.
You are all in our prayers.
Love and huggs tou you Family

Indpls., IN

At 8:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday and have a blessed day. I am praying for you and your family as this holday season is approaching. Know that you all have touched may of our hearts who you will never probably ever meet but know that we all stand together in our prayers for you and your family. With much love.

At 8:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy birthday, Deanna!

May God abundantly bless you and the rest of your family for being true witnesses for Him!

At 9:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a mother of 4 boys your story has touched my heart. What an amazing life! I pray my boys will come to know Jesus the way BJ did. I also pray that my husband and I will be the kind of parents that can bring up a child in the way he should go.

God bless you!

At 9:44 PM, Blogger Danzeisen5 said...

Dear Deanna,
Happy Happy birthday. I know it is late, but I thought of you all day and pray that your day was full of great memories. I also pray that the year ahead will be one that is blessed beyond any measure and that you will feel such an overwhelming sense of His presence with you as the days go by.
I can only hope and pray that Joshua will love me the way BJ loved you. It was so obvious to all of us how close you were and what a bond there was between the two of you. You are such a wonderful mother, I respect and observe you mothering more than you know and I really pray that I can have half the impact on Joshua, Emily and Ari that you have had on your children. You are a precious jewel and I know that BJ saw that in you and cherished you. Oh my goodness, I've never seen a boy that age adore his mother more! If you have any tips, please pass them on to me!
I love you (as I said too many times on your answering machine, again!) and really look forward to seeing you next weekend.

At 10:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy birthday Deanna! I love you Mom! Praying for you as always!


At 10:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna. You are so blessed to have such a loving family. I feel privileged to share in your families legacy.

At 11:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Deanna!I pray for the whole family always. Lauren an extra pray for you. All my Love,Corinne

At 11:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Deanna,

Sorry this is coming so late in the day. I have been thinking about you and praying for you all day long--that God would bless your day in a special way. Happy Birthday.

I am praying also for Lauren's studies.

Much love to you all and thanks for the prayers for David, Debbie, and Milkel. I am still waiting to hear how things are working out but know God is in the midst of the trial.


At 11:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas From Heaven By: John Mooney
I still hear the songs
I still see the lights
I still feel your love on cold wintery nights
I still share your hopes and all of your cares
I'll even remind you to please say your prayers
I just want to tell you, you still make me proud
You stand head and shoulders above all the crowd
Keep trying each moment to stay in his grace
I came here before you to help set your place
You don't have to be perfect all of the time
He forgives you the slip if you continue the climb
To my family and friends please be thankful today
I'm still close beside you in a new special way
I love you all dearly now don't shed a tear
Cause I'm spending my Christmas with Jesus this year.

At 12:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday! I'm Still praying for all of you.

Mike, Peru 05

At 1:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He gave more love to her in those years than some mother's see in a lifetime

Deanna, you are so blessed to have had that love. I live in a world of heart break continually. I'm jealous of that love you were shown.

I know the most awesome gift you received this year is one you might not know about. But I just bet that beej turned and recited the verse that a moms greatest joy is her childen rise up and call her blessed. Can't ask for a better gift than to have your son call you blessed to the Lord!

At 3:00 AM, Blogger Simon Langer said...

Greetings, I was reading some blogs and happened on your blog. I'm quite impressed , with how it has a good feel.

Look forward to reading more.

B.S. in Electrical Engineering


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