During this whole process of grief, healing, and trying again it’s hard to not feel defeated sometimes.  I’d be kidding myself if I said that I haven’t felt this way on occasion.  I find that the feelings of defeat have come more often since we began trying again.  It is only human to work ourselves up in anticipation of something, especially when it is something we really want.  The higher the anticipation, the greater the reward sometimes.  Likewise, the higher the anticipation the greater the fall feels when it doesn’t turn out like we’ve planned.  For me, when I am feeling defeated, that seems to be the time when my fears seem to rise up.

I have to keep telling myself to have faith…to be brave…to have hope.  It’s no wonder when a baby is born that it is considered a miracle.  All the pieces that have fit together just so to make it all work out, it’s truly an amazing thing.  Honestly, I am no different than any of those out there who decide to grow their family.  We all want to have this little miracle.  After you experience the loss of a child, that want and desire seem to grow even bigger.  So it is really important, dare I say imperative to continue to have hope.  Because with hope, you will find faith, and with faith you will be able to be brave to stand strong and face the day, not to mention all the emotions that go with it.

I received a piece of advice from a friend recently.  It is a great idea, but I have to admit it feels like a little counter intuitive.  It goes against the normal flow of human nature-in a good way though.  She told me that you need to tell yourself that you are strong.  That you can carry a baby.  That you can provide a place that provides what your baby needs.  You can create and carry life.  You can do this.

When you think about it, it is kind of like the pep talk given at half time to the team from the coach when the game isn’t going as well as they had planned for.  It is done to inspire the team, to motivate them, to tell them that they have the skills and ability to accomplish what is needed in order to finish the game wining.  We all need a little pep talk to get us motivated every now and then.  So be sure to give yourself the pep talk you need to help you be strong…to have hope…to have faith…and to be brave.

I keep telling myself this little pep talk.  So this way I can keep hoping and keep believing.  I have faith, though it may wavier sometimes, I can do this.  Maybe it’s time for you to create your own little pep talk.  What is it that you need to say to yourself to feel that sense of hope again, to have faith, to help you feel brave and strong?

 

What will 2012 bring?  I haven’t the slightest clue, but I will continue to hope, plan, and dream.

I know I want to continue doing some of the new things I picked up this year, I want to expand things, and I want to readjust other things.  I want to move into more of a simpler mode.  I hope down the road I am able to continue to do the things that bring me the most joy and mean the  most.  I will continue to spend time with family.  I hope to take more  time to have  coffee and chats with friends.  I will continue to travel.  I will take an active approach in my health, making the simple step of being more active.  I dream to rebuild my photography business in hopes it grows into something where I can share it more with people and where I can create something special for families.  I hope to reach out to others who have experienced a pregnancy loss or infant loss, building connections and healing.

I hope to be “living the backyard life“, as my husband puts it, still and having that life include little feet running around the house.  I hope that we will grow our family.  To go from 3 to 4 or 5.  Whatever it may be.  To be raising a family is my dream.   I hope my path continues to introduce new people into my life in hopes that bonds can be formed and relationships built.

In the year ahead I plan to continue blogging/journaling, creating a place for others to find help & healing on their infant loss path, as well as a place to share their story through my website www.myinfantloss.com, and continue to find ways to honor Samantha.  I hope to find beauty in the world around me each day, find great joy in the simple things, and grow (mentally, spiritually, and emotionally)

This past year I have taken one word with me.  It helped me to get through the tough days, gave me hope, and created a sense of peace.  That word was trust.  2012 brings a new year and a new word, with the help of an Illuminate class I took I decided to make a conscious choice about what word I want to carry me through the new year.  I have been trying to decide between two…strength and believe.  With all that I am hoping for and dreaming for, my word is going to be…believe.  It encompasses so much and with my one word mantra, I will continue to grow and will be able to make it through the year with a strong foundation.  What does 2012 look like for you?  Whatever it may be…I hope your year is filled with relaxation, happiness, laughter, and many blessings.  Happy New Year!  Here’s to a great year!!

 

 

Happy New Year!  Today 2012 begins.  With a lot to look forward to in a new year, I want to take a moment to reflect on 2011.  This past year has been a very busy year for us.  It has been filled with firsts, lesson’s learned, travel, big celebrations, and loss.  I have gained a new perspective and met a lot wonderful people.

We had two big celebrations this year.  Raun’s little sister (who is like 22) got married over the Summer.  It has been fun to watch her grow up.  We also celebrated my grandfather’s 95th birthday.  95 years!  Can you believe it?  I can only imagine what it would be like to have been around for the past 95 years.  He has seen a lot of firsts and new things over the years.  I pray that he still has many more birthdays and celebrations to go.  I have learned a lot from my grandfather over the years about family, faith, and values.

This past year we had our first pregnancy.  Something that should bring so much joy and excitement quickly turned when I experienced a miscarriage at 17 weeks.  The result, was a beautiful baby girl who we named Samantha Jean.  She was only here with us a brief while, but her little tiny footprints have left so much behind.  It is because of her I began this website, began to reach out to others in a whole new way, made some new friends and built wonderful relationships, strengthened old relationships, learned a lot about myself and Raun, and began to change the way I look at life overall.

Raun and I have taken the opportunity to travel this past year.  When I say travel, I don’t mean abroad.  We did some weekend getaways to places like Bayfield and Stockholm, WI.  We visited family in both Wisconsin and Missouri.  We enjoyed good travel, great company, of course good food, and many photographic opportunities.

Loosing Samantha has made a lot of changes in my life.  I have begun to fill my life with the things I truly enjoy, to weed out the things that don’t have meaning or interest, step out of my comfort zone, and really put what I value first.  Near the later part of the year I made the big decision to give up my classroom and become a building sub.  It was a tough decision, but it has been one of the best choices I made.  It has brought much needed peace, relief, new opportunities, and rejuvenation.

What will 2012 bring?  I haven’t the slightest clue, but I will continue to hope, plan, and dream.  I hope that we will grow our family.  I plan on continuing to do the things that mean the most to me, spend time with family, connect with friends (perhaps over a cup of coffee), and travel.  I dream to rebuild my photography business and to reach out to others who have experienced a pregnancy loss or infant loss.

This past year I have taken one word with me.  It helped me to get through the tough days, gave me hope, and created a sense of peace.  That word was trust.  2012 brings a new year and a new word, with the help of an Illuminate class I took I decided to make a conscious choice about what word I want to carry me through the new year.  I have been trying to decide between two…strength and believe.  With all that I am hoping for and dreaming for, my word is going to be…believe.  It encompasses so much and with my one word mantra, I will continue to grow and will be able to make it through the year with a strong foundation.  What does 2012 look like for you?  Whatever it may be…I hope your year is filled with relaxation, happiness, laughter, and many blessings.  Happy New Year!  Here’s to a great year!!

 

In all of this a person can’t help but to ask “Where is God?”  With this question come a whole slew of other questions.  Like:

Why me/us? or  Why? or What did I/We do to deserve this? or What did I do wrong?

And the list goes on and on.  With all of these questions we strive to find answers, to be able to put the pieces of lives back together and to find a sense of peace.  The only thing…we may not find the answers to the questions.   There is a chance that down the road we may find some answers to our questions, but there will still be many left unanswered.  When we can’t find the answers we are looking for then we start turning towards someone to blame.  For some, they blame someone close to them; like their spouse, a friend, anyone in their path at the moment, even their own self.   When the answers still aren’t there then the blame ends on God. 

 Am I guilty of this?  You bet, I have blamed myself and I have blamed God.  I’ve asked these questions over and over; when I couldn’t find the answers I began to blame myself.  When I still didn’t find the answers, I turned to something that I thought had control over everything.  I turned to blaming God. 

Believe me; I blamed God for this for a while.  At first I blamed myself.  Then I blamed myself and God.   And last, I just blamed God.  To me, I wondered how could God put anyone through this and why would he.  If he could do this, then he could fix it right?  I also began to wonder if God really existed.  Because if he truly existed, then why did I feel like he walked away from me and left me stranded, filled with so many questions.  Above all, why when I begged, pleaded, and called out did I feel like I was alone and my thoughts and prayers were no longer being answered. 

After reading a book recommended to me from someone who had walked the path of miscarriage, “Why Bad Things Happen to Good People”, my perspective has changed greatly.  I have learned that God doesn’t choose to bad things or good things to people.  He doesn’t look at you and say you were good here you go, or you were bad here you go.  That’s karma.  Instead God takes what happens in our lives and uses those experiences to shape us.  Those experiences are what guide us down our path. 

We didn’t do anything wrong.  Our miscarriage was something that was totally out of our control.  In fact, it was bit of a fluke and the chances of it happening again that way are even more less likely to happen.  Have I turned away from God during this time, no not really.  But, I have gotten mad at him, yelled at him, begged and pleaded, unloaded on him, and been at a total loss for words on what to say.

I know we all have our own beliefs.  With loss the beliefs may change, weaken, get strong, or go away completely.  Other than holding on tightly to my family, especially my husband and the strong relationship we have, I have been holding on to God.  Though sometimes my spirit was frayed and I questioned God (a lot) he was still there.  I encourage you to rebuild and strengthen the relationships you have and can believe in.  Now is not the time to turn away from those, no matter how angry you may get.  Hold on tight to what is steadfast in your life.

 

 

Lyrics to “Stronger”
Hey, heard you were up all night
Thinking about how your world ain’t right
And you wonder if things will ever get better
And you’re asking why is it always raining on you
When all you want is just a little good news
Instead of standing there stuck out in the weather

Oh, don’t hang your head
It’s gonna end
God’s right there
Even if it’s hard to see Him
I promise you that He still cares

When the waves are taking you under
Hold on just a little bit longer
He knows that this is gonna make you stronger, stronger
The pain ain’t gonna last forever
And things can only get better
Believe me
This is gonna make you stronger
Gonna make you stronger, stronger, stronger
Believe me, this is gonna make you …

Try and do the best you can
Hold on and let Him hold your hand
And go on and fall into the arms of Jesus
Oh, lift your head it’s gonna end
God’s right there
Even when you just can’t feel Him
I promise you that He still cares

‘Cause if He started this work in your life
He will be faithful to complete it
If only you believe it
He knows how much it hurts
And I’m sure that He’s gonna help you get through this

When the waves are taking you under
Hold on just a little bit longer
He knows that this is gonna make you stronger, stronger
The pain ain’t gonna last forever
In time it’s gonna get better
Believe me
This is gonna make you stronger

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