The following poem, written to the meter of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, was written by my husband, Andrew R. Backus.
For those who do not know us, it is the story of our lives – the circumstances under which we met, fell in love, and were married. Some may think the timing, circumstances and place where we were married a little odd, but we believe that the hand of God was leading and guiding us and put each of us in the right place at the right time. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (Romans 8: 28)
- Andy’s first wife Dee passed away on Aug. 25, 2013 of Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) Grade 4 Brain Cancer – a form of Brain Cancer that is always terminal.
- My first husband Bob Pocza passed away on Feb. 2, 2016 of a blood disease called Myelodysplastic Syndrome after an almost 4 year illness. I was now a widow.
- On April 18, 2016 My son Robert Pocza was diagnosed with Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) Grade 4 brain cancer, the same type of cancer that Dee had. Being a new widow, I moved from my home in Michigan to Wisconsin to live with and help my son, who lived in the Milwaukee area. He passed away on April 6, 2017.
- Our story is bittersweet, but in all circumstances we know that God is good and does what is best for his children.
Christmas 2017/Epiphany 2018
Merry Christmas to one, Merry Christmas to all!
And this Christ is named Jesus, as you may recall.
He’s the One God had promised right after the Fall.
He came into our world as a baby so small.
God and man in one person, He paid for all sin,
And He opened up heaven so all may go in.
With this letter we greet you, this man and this wife,
As we share with you things going on in our life:
‘Twas about this time last year that something was brewing,
And in a few months there will be vows renewing!
For you see, there’s a God and He knows what He’s doing.
It was May 22nd of Twenty-Sixteen
That a man and his mother in my church I’d seen –
A new widow from Michigan here for her son
Who had a brain tumor, the same kind of one
That somehow had happened to Dee my late wife –
The kind that ends up with the ending of life.
I offered support to this mom and her son,
For we know that with Jesus all battles are won.
The time went by quickly as we grew together
And they worked through medicines, red tape and weather.
The cancer progressed with its ups and its downs,
While Chris and her son dealt with smiles and with frowns.
In the meantime, my role was to offer support
As we helped her son Rob who was such a good sport.
But something was happening, to our surprise;
We began seeing love as we looked in our eyes.
Robert noticed it too and began to remind us
That perhaps we should leave being single behind us.
Well, believe it or not, that’s exactly the thing
That transpired, and suddenly Chris had a ring!
Robert tearfully told her it would make him smile
If he with his mother could walk down the aisle.
So we planned and we plotted as fast as we could,
But that doggoned old cancer was up to no good.
Robert moved to a place, Zilber Hospice by name,
Where my wife Dee had been; it was one and the same!
So with God’s guiding hand and beside her son’s bed,
Christine Pocza and Andrew R. Backus – were wed!
Now believe me, the story continues from here;
For the next day we saw Robert’s end drawing near –
The end that without faith in Christ some would fear.
Chris’ son now went home to his Savior so dear.
In church we our vows reaffirmed on May six,
With God’s Word, prayer and song a big part of the mix.
The service by Pastor B. Adams was led;
Robert’s memory made known by a rose that was red.
Sarah Kuerth played the organ, Don Buch us addressed;
With song “You Gift of God” by Chris D. we were blessed.
Since then Chris and I have begun married life
And are making a home as a husband and wife.
We live in the same place as I did before,
And Chris’ sister Barb’s at Clare Meadows next door.
I still do many things such as I used to do,
But a dog, fish and birds are some things that are new!
I would be remiss if I failed to mention –
And bragging and boasting are not my intention –
That my grandchildren now number twenty and eight! *
Steve and Heather bore Theo – last June was the date!
I baptized little Theo at Bash – I was blessed!
And our family still knows “Backus Bash” is the best!
(*Just in case you are wond’ring “What else will he say?”
I can tell you that there is one more on the way!)
We have seen some things change and some things stay the same,
Yet in all of life’s changes, sin’s shame is our claim.
That’s why God sent His Son who is Jesus by Name;
He redeemed us poor sinners, and that’s why He came.
Happy Epiphany from the Backuses!