Last week, Ami Brown was honored on a birthday that many had feared she would never live to see.
Alaskan Bush People is back (and trampling Keeping Up With The Kardashians in the ratings), and the Brown family is reflecting on how grateful they are.
Billy Brown shares that the decision to move the family to Washington was difficult -- but there was never really another option.
In an interview with Monsters and Critics, Billy Brown says that the decision to move to Washington came after they realized that there was no real alternative.
"We didn’t really have much choice in how we decided," Billy admits.
Alaska, he says, was a non-starter. "The doctors were quite emphatic that we couldn’t go back there."
"it was just too hard to get her to…to set up something she would need if something happened." Billy explains.
Billy adds: "and we also have to go in every three months now to get CAT scans and CT scans."
The Brown family has made a lot of money with their show, but not enough to build a private hospital in the wilderness. Moving to Washington was a practical choice.
"I guess it was just time, you know, the Good Lord, it was just time…" Billy says. "You wouldn’t believe what he gave us."
"We thought everything was gone," he says, referring to Ami's lung cancer. "But you have a little bit of faith…he gave us more than we could ever imagine."
As you may recall, around this time last year, her odds of survival were placed at around 3%. She's still alive and well.
"We could not have ordered it in a dream and it have been better than what he had given us," Billy says. "It’s just a brand new world."
Billy and Ami weren't the only Brown family members who had input on the matter.
"The doc was saying how hard it was on Mom and everything," Bear explains in that same interivew.
"We all figured that it was just time" to move, he reveals, adding "and the best thing to do" was to head to Washington.
Bear explains: "because if we were waiting until Mom was healed up to move back…"
"It seems like one thing that may never happen and she would be constantly waiting," Bear concludes. That is very honest of him.
Billy says that, even though moving to the "Lower 48" was a big decision, he is fond of the 435 acre property he purchased.
"It really surprised us," Billy says of their new homestead. "Because it’s wonderful what we’ve got."
"The people down here," Billy adds. "It’s a lot like Alaska to be honest with you."
Rumor has it that some of Billy's new neighbors are resentful of people they see as entertainment industry "big-shots" turning their town into a reality show set.
"People’s attitudes and all," Billy says. "Critters that we’ve never heard of."
During the season premiere, Billy commented on their new home.
"We've fought hard," Billy said at the time. "We deserve to be here."
"I think this is definitely the biggest adventure we've had," he added.
Thankfully, Washington gave them the right balance of a rural wooded environment while also being a location from which they could take Ami to the hospital when needed.
We have to admit, however, that many fans are still curious about whatever happened to the family's plans to move to Colorado.