Wednesday, December 12, 2007

And the Good News is. . . .

She’s Back! Sandy Wallman, my sister and wonderful friend, has recovered almost completely from the Chicago wind’s savage attack in August. A mere three months later, she’s back in her own apartment on Lake Shore Drive, living by herself once again, reclaiming her life. All wounds have healed and except for minor issues, like needing a nap in the afternoons or forgetting where she put her keys (wait, that happens to me and I didn’t get hit in the head). She’s enjoying her days and hopes to return to a realistic work schedule in January. All of your prayers, good wishes and concern have definitely made the difference. Thank you from the bottom of all of our hearts!

I’m thrilled to announce “Indestructible” won Best Documentary Film in the Midwest Film Festival contest conducted this past month. As the Laurel Leaves accumulate, so has our belief that 2008 will become an important year for the film, for Ben and for our entire family in so many ways. So I thought I’d take a moment to share a little bit about what’s been happening in the Byer family.

The St. Louis Byers moved to Connecticut! Matt, Susan, Adam, Zachary and Elizabeth love their new life in a beautiful home with wonderful new friends and neighbors. Matt’s business opportunity has proved to be all he hoped for and more. The children shifted to their new schools like the troupers they are and have adjusted wonderfully. So much for moves being traumatic experiences!

Josh has created a beautiful life for himself in downtown Chicago. His daughters, Mackenzie and Abby, love to spend time with him in the big city. They’ve visited every museum at least once and have their favorites they like to return to regularly. They’ve taken a few trips together and like to visit us in Dodgeville, which, as a matter of fact, will be happening this weekend for a little Chanukah celebration.

Ben and John continue to amaze me because they are both willing to go the extra mile every day. They live in a great apartment in Chicago, not far from brother Josh. During the season, Ben rarely missed John’s baseball and soccer practices and games. Movies, plays, poker games with the guys, summertime barbeques and winter visits to Dodgeville – like Energizer bunnies they keep going and going and going.

Sarah, Barry and Zoe are happy with their new Madison home, beautifully decorated, warm and cozy. Zoe has made more friends in her new school than I can count. What’s especially wonderful for us is having them nearby. A last minute dinner, an unexpected visit from Zoe, a morning breakfast together is a wonderful treat. Barry’s new job is both challenging and satisfying for him. And Sarah? She’s on the prowl for a place to put her talents and has a few things in mind.

Babies, babies and more babies. Rebeccah and Drew are surrounded and doing a fine job of caring for Henry and Elliot. Drew has a new job in theater, his first love. In the middle of nursing, changing diapers and chasing a toddler, Rebeccah still has time to care for “Indestructible” sort of a third baby when you think about it. And while I miss having them nearby, I love visiting them in Winston-Salem and relish the new life they’ve created.

Steve fights the fight every day for Ben and others with ALS. He traveled to Toronto for a symposium just two weeks ago, met with researchers and physicians, all working to unscramble the ALS puzzle. I continue to write almost every day and have joined a great writer’s group. I’m supposed to work out at the new health club across the street three times a week. I love Burnt Chocolate, the short story I hope to complete this month, my newfound friends in Madison, my old friends in Chicago and Dodgeville. We travel often to visit family and friends. Life is good.

And you?


Eleanor Gerstley said...

I love the way you write and what you have to say and share with us. Thank you. You make me very proud.
Love always,

Silvana said...


Hi cutie!! I finally got a momemt to check your blog. It's fabulous. You do have a gift for is as warm and inviting as your spirit. I do miss you so. I am looking foward to visiting you and Stephen very soon.
Life is very good on this end. Michael and Gabi keep me busy and make me smile every day. Michael is my sensitive guy. He is so into football lately. He could rattle off any stat or score! Gabi is my old soul. She said to me the other day, "you won't forget to come visit me when you die, will you?" One morning she was laying in bed with me (one of my favorite things), and was looking up at the ceiling counting. I asked, "what are you counting?" "Spirits" she answered matter of factly. "How do you see?" "Ninety. How many do you see?" "I see one." "That makes ninety-one" she said! There are million conversations like that one.
Anyway, don't forget to check our Dr. Darren Weissman's website. I'm actually scheduled to take the exam on Thursday to become a certified LifeLine practitioner. Im am SO excited!
Love and blessings,
Silvana said...

Dear Barbara,

Lovely catching up on your family. Congrats on your writing. I cheer you on.

love from afar,