The draw of nature…more specifically in this case-water, the sounds, the calm.

Being near water and listening to the waves is one of my favorite moments.  it puts me in a mode where everything seems to slow down.  I am able to gather my thoughts, sort through things, meditate, and reflect.  After my times by water I walk away with a sense of peace, open mind, and a renewed energy.

Where is your place that brings you this?  Have you been there recently?  Or is your heart and mind calling you to go?  What would it take for you to go now?  How much benefit would it bring to you?

I ask these questions because after this past week I realized I had not gotten in touch with the outdoors in a while.  The reason?  too busy.  It’s more of an excuse, but with the weather being as nice as it has, it’s a pretty lousy excuse.  After an early day at work, I quickly went home changed, grabbed a few things, and headed down to the river.  It felt good to sit in the sun, watch the waterfowl, listen to the water, and write.

This past Saturday was an absolutely gorgeous day!  80 degrees!  I must say this is highly unusual for Minnesota during the month of March.  A year ago we were still buried in many feet of snow at this point.  Raun and I took the opportunity to hang out down by the river for several hours.

I was able to get so writing done and some photography done.  While both were fun, the photography opportunity was amazing.  I would sit down by the water, listen to waves, and wait.  I waited for the ducks and geese to get ever so close so I could catch a photo.  Waiting still, waiting for the sun to peak out made the adventure more fun.

The draw of nature is what brings me satisfaction.  I need to be around, submersed, near it throughout the days.  If I go too long, I notice big time.  The call and desire burn like a flame.  It stays manageable if I have my priorities straight, but when they are off balance that flame is more like a fire.  It is one of my happy places.

What is your happy places?  Where do you go?  What do you do?  Have you checked in there recently?

 

I have been struggling with what to write on this weekend for a post.  For whatever reason I was having a hard time deciding what to write about.  So, I decided to turn toward something I know and enjoy…photography.  My passion for photography has greatly grown over the years, but in the past year it has been my way to capture the life around me.  I generally will hide behind a camera rather than be in a photo.  Last year I would find it even more difficult to be the focus of the camera as it was hard to smile on the outside sometimes when I felt like falling to pieces on the inside.  I have learned that there will be good days and there will be bad days, and photography helps me to get through it.  I want to capture all the beauties of the moments around me and use photography as a way to help me heal as well.  Below is a little video I put together with some of my favorite photos I have taken from the past year.

 

 

I am continuing to share with you what I am thankful for, grateful for, or just plain blessed with in my life.  At the beginning of the month I decided to share my 30 days of Thankfulness.  You can read the first part of my 30 days of Thankfulness by clicking here.

7. The Chance to Meet New People-This past year I have come into contact with some truly amazing people who bring new aspects to my life. I have met a lot of these people by stepping out of my comfort zone. But I am glad I did because I have learned so much and grown as an individual as well.

8. My Photography-Over the years I have had an interest in photography.  In the last couple of years that has really grown from being an interest to being a major component to my life.  I am grateful my skills have grown over the years and now I am to the point where I can share my photos in a way I only dreamed of.  In the future, I see my photography taking on a different spin.

9. Teaching-even though I do not have a classroom to call my own (which I am thankful for as wel) I am thankful for finding again the reason why I went into teaching.

10. Carly Marie-using her creative talents I have a wonderful photo in rememberance of Samantha that was taken at sunset on a beach with Samantha’s name written in the sand.  It is absolutely beautiful and what Carly does is truly amazing.

  

11. All those who are in the Military-I am thankful for all those who have served in the Military, currently do, and will in the future.  We have family in the Army, Marines, and Airforce.

12. Illuminate & Beryl Young-through a course I am working my way through grief and healing by using photography and journaling.  The assignments are causing me to step out, truly open up, and look at things with a fresh perspective.

13. For Dragonflies-dragonflies bring me a sense of peace and calm when I see them.  They remind me of our baby girl and tell me she is close by.  They seem to show up when I most need the comfort.

What are you thankful for?  It’s not to late to start creating your list.  If you aren’t able to do the 30 days of Thankfulness, then I encourage you to create a list of 10.  I look forward to continuing to share mine and I look forward to hearing from you what is on your list.  Share you thoughts below.

 

I wanted to share that I will be participating in an Illuminate course over the next month or so.  This will give me an opportunity to work through the grief and healing process in another way.  Or should I say, in addition to what I am doing.  It allows me to do two things, take photos and to write as I work through the process.  However, the writing that I will be doing will be on specific topics assigned, as well as the photos I take.  The first assignment is writing a letter to Samantha.  I look forward to working my way through this experience, meeting new people,  and continuing to walk this path while finding new ways to reflect, honor, and cherish.

 

I have decided to take part in Let’s Blogoff.  A few times a month they put out a blog topic, then I get to think on the topic and create a blogpost with my thoughts.  These topics give me a chance to think deeply on topics I normally wouldn’t, expand my horizons, and delve deeper into learning more about myself and where I may be headed in life.  For example, the last topic was entitled “What is Home?”.  It is an opportunity to not give the short and sweet answer to the questions.  Instead, it makes you mull it over and share your thoughts.

This time the topic is “What did you want to be when you grow up?”  This for some can be a fairly simple recall and easy to answer.  Well, I have been thinking on this topic on and off for the past couple of days.  I can get back to the high school years pretty easily, when I can remember coming to the conclusion that I either wanted to be a teacher or be involved in interior decorating.  I also remember having someone tell me that as long as they could remember I always wanted to be a teacher.

Alright, now to look back even farther in the years.  I very vaguely remember playing teacher as a little kid with my friends or family every so often.  I don’t remember ever saying outright, “I want to be ______ when I grow up”.   Thinking about it now, I don’t recall really thinking about it much at all.  In my mind, I was just being a kid, doing kid sort of things.

Well, seven years out of college and I am a teacher.  However, over time I am beginning to change the direction I am going in.  I am changing my focus.  I wonder sometimes what it would have been like if I went down the path of interior decorating.  I get my feet slightly wet in that area by decorating my own house, as well as helping my folks decorate areas of their house.  For me, honestly, getting my feet slightly wet is enough to let me know I made the right choice at the time. 

Looking down the road I am not so sure I will still be a teacher when I grow up.  I am one right now, but I do think that will change as I get older.  So, looking forward…what do I want to be when I grow up?  I want to be a mom and raise our family.  I want to do more with my photography.  Photography is what strongly pulls me now and I want to continue to grow that.  I want to find a way for me to take my experiences from this year of losing our daughter and help others who are walking the path of pregnancy loss & infant loss.  If I can find a way to combine all three of these desires into one goal, then that will be what I want to be when I grow up.

I don’t know exactly where my meandering path is going to lead me, but I do know what direction I am heading in as of now.  So, what did you want to be when you grow up? or what do you want to be when you grow up?

 

When you think of “awareness” and the month of October, most people’s thoughts go to Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  If you happen to be a teacher, then you also toss in Fire Safety Month.  What most people don’t know, is that it is also Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness.  October 15 is not only a nationally recognized day when people who have experienced pregnancy and/or infant loss come together to honor their child(ren) who have grown their angel wings, but it is also a worlwide recognized day.  I would have never known about this myself until we experienced the loss of Samantha.  With her loss I have began to learn a lot.  Sometimes, it is a lot more than I want to learn, but yet at the same time it is helpful and good to know.  Miscarriages and stillbirths are still a comon thing to happen and as common as they are, so is not talking about them.  However, as time goes by more and more people are speaking about the topic and creating awareness.  They are “breaking the silence”.  It’s not always easy to talk about, it’s not always easy to hear, but it needs to be talked about in order to create a better understanding.  By designating a month to create awareness and having a day to help recognize and honor those who have been lost is a start in the process of breaking the silence.

In honor of Samantha we lit several candles.  We participated in “the wave of light”, that created a contious wave of light across the world in recognition of pregnancy loss and infant loss.

What made this day even more special and touching is that I found out on the morning of October 15 that I get to participate in an online course by Illuminate that uses photography as a way to help heal and work through the grief process.  The photo that I submited for the contest was a collage of photos I took during my last visit to the memorial wall.  It was at the end of a tough week and I need to be somewhere that was quiet.  A place with little distractions and with the hope of feeling closer to my little girl.  And hoepuflly I would come awy with a slightly clearer head and less weight on my shoulders.  It was a visit that I know she was there, because there was a dragonfly that sat with me.

 

Bayfield, WI…our home away from home.  We have been up there a few times now, but not later in the Summer.  We spent our Labor Day weekend there this year.  The benefits?  Not as many tourists, so it is a little quieter, a little bit more of a slower pace, and not as much traffic.  It was a restful, relaxing weekend we were both looking forward to.  A much needed weekend getaway. 

We decided to stay in this cute little one bedroom apartment within eye sight of the Lake and walking distance to everywhere in the downtown Bayfield area.  The only time we used the car the whole weekend was to go out to Madaline Island to visit Big Bay State Park and to go up to several of the orchards to buy some different jams and jellies. 

For whatever reason whenever I visit Bayfield it doesn’t take long to feel comfortable, relaxed, and in total layed back mode.  Like I said, a home away from home.  We spent a lot of time down by the lake and even got to see a few colorful sunsets.

One of my favorite things to do is photography.  Bayfield provides a lot of opportunity to do one of my passions and get a closer glimsp into the beautiful creation of nature that is all around us.  Not to mention the amazing architecture that is all around the downtown.  Between Raun and I we took some truly amazing photos throughout the weekend.

I love taking in all of the sights in and around Bayfield.  I can sit down by the water watching the sailboats, ferries, and other various boats come and go from the harbor.  Give me one of my favorite teas to drink (A Snowy Monkey Heaven…peppermint green tea with steamed milk) and I could probably spend most of the day doing that.  Since my first trip to Bayfield I have been enamored by sea glass.  What is sea glass?  It is pieces of broken bottles that have been slowly polished down to a smooth, rounded edge piece of glass over time by the water.  Most pieces are small in size and generally the common colors to find our green, white, and brown.  Over the course of my visits I have gathered various pieces in size, shape, and color.  I have blue, white, brown, green, and purple.  Some day I hope to find a red piece.  Tough to do, as it is not a common bottle color.  When we were visiting Bayfield last Summer Raun found me a piece that is roughly half dollar size, maybe a little bigger.  A rare find, as the waters and shoreline break up the big pieces over time.  So as with each visit, I do walk along the beaches keeping an eye out for the special glass.

In the future I hope to see Bayfield in the Fall and Winter, as it will bring in a different perspective and some truly amazing sights.  Bayfield, my home away from home. 

What is your home away from home and your favorite things to do there?  I would love to hear your thoughts.

© 2017 MyInfantLoss.com Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha
Sharing Buttons by Linksku