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be brave, embrace your journey

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Maybe it’s part of getting older, or just seeing my nieces and nephew reach certain milestones (like high school!).  How does that happen so fast?  I’m sure it was yesterday that I was holding the oldest in my arms and laughing with her, but fifteen years blink away.  

Whatever it is, I have started thinking more about slowing down and embracing the journey.  Eating up every detail as much as I can.  Keeping the phone and social media at arms length, only reaching for it when I absolutely need to.  Of course, often reminding myself to do just that!

It’s a nice lull that I have been craving.  I take each day as it comes, careful not to hope for the day in the future when it’s summer and warm, but enjoying today, even if it’s cold, because I am alive.  Each day has its own type of beauty even when it seems dark and bleak.  There is always some thing I can be grateful for.  A bed to sleep in, socks for my feet, breath.

I have been reading more slowly, sitting in silence, listening, and writing with paper and pencil.  It is challenging keep the tendrils of my old self from weaving back in and suffocating the new growth I have built.

But moving forward, I want to do my best for the rest of my days, to be intentional at embracing life.

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not a destination

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This life is never just a destination.

We are all on different parts of our journey and the scenery and lessons are going to be worlds apart for each of us.  Even those that travel in the similar circles.

There are so many parts of my life I wouldn’t wish upon anyone, nor would I want to do it again.  But it has challenged me, and made me who I am today.  All the pain, the hurts, all the smiles and laughter continue to add up.  I wouldn’t want to subtract anything for fear of taking something away from the adventure.

I know it has been a little tough, a lot of joy, and I wouldn’t want to change a thing.

No one does life perfectly.  I make mistakes, missteps and put myself back on track.  I figure out what works, what doesn’t, and move forward.  Looking back just long enough to learn and teach, adjust course and continue on.

I have said before.  It is so easy to get caught up in the what if’s, what might have been.  I don’t want to go there anymore.  I like the me I am everyday. 

 

how will they know

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How will they know …

If we keep silent, how can we share our secret.

How will they ever know how it hurt.

How the pain and shame filled us up as we walked out the clinic doors.

The self-hatred and anger that poured into our souls.

That it wasn’t the simple decision they told us it was.

Lies.

That we suffer alone as pieces of us were stolen and rotted away.

Suffering in silence.

How will they know?  We have to tell them.

Speak the truth.  Squash the lies.  Break the silence.

Our stories together will be like a symphony of truth.

thoughts

I was asked today how often I think about my abortion.

I didn’t really know the answer.  First, I think about post abortive women almost daily.  I think about what to write on my blog, if I have anything to add about my healing journey.  Is there any part of my story that can help them.

But the actual abortion and my lack of children.  I’m not quite sure how to answer that.  I know I think about it every mother’s day and random days throughout the year.  But that deep sharp pain that comes from revisiting that experience of being in the clinic and going through the motions…really that only hits me from time to time.  Whenever I allow myself to go there.  It’s not something I want to remember often.

When I do revisit, I have found the more I am able to talk about it…the less power it has over me and I am ok with that. 🙂

This really resonated with me. It’s easy to forget these things happen, but they do and it’s good to remember so we don’t repeat or stick our head in the sand.

The Audacity of Life

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I recall standing in front of a monument in the south part of the Phnom Penh, Cambodia at the entry way of the Killing Fields. The monument commemorates 2 – 3 million people that were slaughtered during the Pol Pot regime in the mid 70’s. They killed people for no other reason than wearing glasses, which meant you could read or had an education. If you were a professor, or doctor, anyone who was able to train or teach others were eliminated immediately and they continued to kill people for no reason whatsoever other than for being a potential threat to the regime.

As I walked through the killing fields, I couldn’t help but be captivated by the horror that took place there. If you were with me you would see large holes, mass graves, where people were brought in large numbers and were killed in mass and buried…

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healing continued…

The song on my last post “the healing has begun” says a lot.  We make sure they understand this when we part ways after our six week study and retreat weekend.

We only scratch the surface in the six weeks we are together.  The healing has only begun and will continue on in different forms.  Some women have never told their husbands of an abortion in their past.  They have held on to this deep dark secret.  Finally letting this secret go can be healing.

Sometimes it’s the people or circumstances we tend to hold on to.  The ones we can’t forgive who helped in this choice for us to abort.  If we hold on too tightly, this can turn into bitterness.  I think letting go of these people and forgiving is very healing.

I can’t stress enough how unique we are and how healing is different for everyone at different stages in this journey.  It took me years and years to continually forgive one person that was involved in my abortion.  Sometimes those feelings come bubbling back up, but I remember that I have chosen to forgive and let go.  They have no power over me anymore.

Like the sunrise every day dawns with new life and new possibilities. 🙂

a simple test

I was in walgreens getting some random items while on vacation and the strangest thing happened.  A young lady came up to me.

“Excuse me,” she said.  “Can you show me where the pregnancy tests are?”

Me in my ocean beach gear wondered why she was asking me this.  She was so young and at that moment there were so many things I wanted to say to her, to ask her.  I was out of my element though.  I didn’t know where to direct her or tell her where there was a pregnancy resource center.  Ask her if she was ok.  So I just directed her to the pregnancy tests and prayed about her since that day.

She is still on my mind.  I watched her walk out of there.  Her small silhouette hidden by an extra large sweatshirt, her face shielded by the raised hood.  She looked like she wanted to melt into the background.

In the end I know it isn’t up to me to “save” everyone.  We all have our own walk, path, choices and decisions to make in this life.