It’s Been A While…

“He has been with me everywhere I have gone.” Genesis 35:3

Amen to that!  It’s been quite some time since my last post, but that verse couldn’t be more true as our life has been changing lately.  I apologize that it has been so long since my last post.  It’s been a little crazy around here, but I finally have a moment to share our latest!

It was the Friday of Labor Day weekend, and we were in the truck heading back to our hometown for lots of family time and sunshine.  We were about two hours into our drive and Jeff had just said that one of the other Browns wide receivers was released.  We chatted about it for a moment, and then all of a sudden Jeff’s phone rang.  As an NFL player’s wife, you never want your husband’s phone to ring on cut day.  My heart sank.  I knew right before Jeff even answered that it wasn’t going to be a good phone call.  A million thoughts ran through my head, but a few deep breaths and the phone call was already over.  We both took a deep breath and were quiet for a few moments.  Then Jeff said something like, “Well, it wasn’t meant to be.”  I was almost teary eyed because I could feel his disappointment.  I wanted to hug him across the center console.

Then the list of people came into our minds of who we should call with the news.  We called both of our families, and then our landlord for our house in Ohio, (since we’d be moving out of there), and that was about it.  Clearly it was going to be in the media soon enough, so we just were going to wait it out for everyone else.  It felt so weird.  It almost took the rest of the drive to process it.  We were both quiet for a little bit in the car, and the only sounds were Carter’s movie playing in the back seat.  Jeff and I started talking about it and he shared his feelings about everything.  As the drive went on, I think many of our thoughts were the same.  The main question was, “What’s going to happen next?”

Sit and wait.  That was the next step, and is still the current step.  It’s basically a waiting game for another team to call Jeff to come in and workout, or possibly sign him.  This business is so much more intense than people think.  Jeff wasn’t the only one to be released during cuts, there were hundreds of others as well around the league.  Hundreds of families that were going to have to pick up and move their lives to the next spot.  It’s kind of crazy, but thinking of it that way makes you feel not alone.  We have tons of amazing memories, pictures, and experiences from Cleveland. We were obviously bummed that we would be leaving the friends and teammates we had just made in Cleveland, but that doesn’t mean we were going to go crawl in a hole and cry about it.  It’s finding a new routine and space to keep raising our family. Football is definitely still in the picture and Jeff is staying in great shape just incase he does get a phone call one day for a workout.  We have so many supporters that were so sad for us when they saw the news that Jeff was released.  There were many people who messaged us saying they were praying for us and we appreciated that so much.  We know how powerful prayer is!  We do know that in some way or another this entire moment is a sign from God.  God has a different route for us to take.  One of my aunt’s texted me the day after cuts and one thing she said was, “When God closes one door, another one opens.”  That was the perfect thing to say!  Even though we are still waiting to see what that next door has behind it, it’s been such a blessing to get a bunch of extra family time these past few weeks.

Life is so short, and NFL careers are so short.  The average player retires after about three years.  Well! Jeff played four full seasons with one team and continued into his fifth year with another.  That’s incredible!  Was it a bummer when he was cut? Absolutely.  But when we take a look at the career he has had so far, it’s SUCH an amazing accomplishment.  God is so good!  Has it been tiring moving out of Ohio the past week? Yes.  But did we find things to laugh and smile about during it?  You bet!  There can be difficult moments to go through in life, but there is a silver lining to each of those moments.  Behind every difficult moment there is a strong team and we are very thankful for our families that have been a huge help during this!  Especially to my sister Megan and her boyfriend Collin who drove late at night to help us move out of our Ohio house.  I’m not sure what we would have done without you guys!  And thanks for sleeping in the guest room on the floor even though there was a huge bug in there!! And once again the grandparents came in to save the day and watch Carter for us while we went and moved out.  Our team behind us is pretty powerful, and I can’t thank them enough.

“Having hope will give you courage.” Job 18:11

The family time that we have had the past few weeks has been unforgettable.  Jeff has been able to be with Carter so much more, and you can tell how much Carter loves it too.  If that day does come and Jeff signs with another team, well! Then we will start our next adventure.  But for now, God has given us this adventure and we are going to embrace every moment of it while we can.  No matter what, God is with us always.

Thank you so much for all of the love and support through all of this.  And thank you for being patient as I took a quick break from writing.  I am more than excited to keep you updated on our journey as it continues!

Lots of love and God Bless,

Alyssa

About Alyssa Janis

Hi Everyone! Welcome to my lifestyle blog! Thank you so much for coming to my site to learn a little more about me and our family. I am 28 years old, (oh my goodness almost 30...), and have been married to my amazing husband, Jeff, for four years. I am also a mom! Carter James is our adorable, little blondie who is two, and Payton Jeanne is our newest baby girl who was born this past July. Bella is our yellow lab, and Chuckles is our cat. Of course I had to mention the fur babies because I'm sure they will come up in this blog at some point. I've been wanting to start a blog for quite some time now, and I think God finally gave me the courage to do it. I have always enjoyed writing, and while this is new to me, I'd love to share a little more about my life with you. My hope is for you to read this blog and feel like you're having normal conversation with me, so feel free to ask questions and make comments! I look forward to sharing our former NFL family life, mommy tips, recipes, favorite bible verses, and more. Looking forward to sharing the next play with you!

10 Responses

  1. Bethany Cain

    God bless all of you!! Praying for the next opportunity for such a wonderful, inspirational Christian family! Enjoy Carter through this challenging time! He will lift your spirits!

    Like

  2. Andrea Bargender

    Hi Alyssa!

    I am so glad that you, Jeff, and Carter are doing well and continue to rely, trust, and glorify God! I figured that, since you may be vacationing for Labor Day weekend and with Jeff being cut from the Browns roster, you wouldn’t add any Next Play with Mrs J posts for a bit.

    Thanks for sharing this time of your life! It really speaks to me and helps me understand others’ lives, experiences, and perspectives.

    Andrea

    P.S. I published my website!! I don’t now how frequently I’ll be adding posts, with school and all, but I hope you’ll check it out: https://acbargender.wixsite.com/givinggodglory

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Mandi Klenow

    Sending you guys so much love and support! All of Tawas is rooting for you. You’re an amazing example of courage and resilience, and I admire you so much for that.

    Like

  4. MOM

    Alyssa, thank you for sharing this emotional time in writing for everyone! I love the bible verses you chose! They are so perfect! The first thing I thought of when I heard the news is that God must have a different plan for you. We continue to pray and wait right along with you for this next plan. It has been so much fun following yours and Jeff’s journey through the NFL. A lot of great times and wonderful memories! I know God will continue to bless you in many ways! I love you all so much!

    Like

  5. Nancy Moffatt

    I, too, appreciate your transparency and positive outlook! It is refreshing. And what would we do without family support? Yours is such a blessing to you! (It is obvious you already know that!)
    We couldn’t be more proud of Jeff and look forward to whatever God has planned for you three! Glad to hear he is staying in great shape for a call, and I hope hope hope it comes! I can’t think of a better role model in that business than Jeff! But he always will be – no matter what business he is in!

    Like

  6. Linda Deyarmond

    Alyssa, I was fired once from a job, and I thought it would break me. When I look back on it now, I realize it was one of the best things that happened in my life. Another door opened, and I was able to stop working for unethical people. The door is open, it just might take some time to find it. You’ll be OK. Trust.

    Like

  7. I agree things happen for a reason. But it will open up new chapters in your lives, make u all stronger, and in return you will not only grow but you will be teachers to others who may go through something similar. Not just Jeff but the whole family will be teachers, just look at what u have put into writing Alssya. Bless all of you and thank you for being yourselves.

    Like

  8. Bianca

    I can hear your voice while im reading this 🙂 I know these feelings all to well. You are absolutely right when you say you are not alone. Your positivity is admirable…Your beautiful family will be just fine.

    Liked by 1 person

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