Tuesday, March 04, 2008

It changed me.

This little mushroom is on the cover of the pregnancy album I am keeping as we count down the weeks and months until our baby is born. {You can see it here.}
I have been thoughtful lately for various reasons. As Chip and I prepared to speak at a dinner last week it forced us to look back- not only at our Oprah dvd and story of tragedy, but also at the process and journey we are on in life since we've gone through some heartaches. I also have been reflective, as I said earlier, just because it's March and we mark another birthday that we would have loved to celebrate with Teagan. She would be turning 11 and each year it is harder for my mind to wrap around the age she would be. She talked many times about 'just wanting to be four forever' and in many ways she got her wish. In my heart and mind she will always be my little blond-haired, blue-eyed four year old girl. No matter how many years go by.
Expecting another baby quite unexpectedly has triggered lots of new thoughts, hopes and dreams. In many ways Chip and I have been through such tough stuff, but in many ways I find myself so thankful for those times of adversity. The fact that they have brought so much 'goodness and blessing' still blows my mind, because our human nature doesn't really teach us to go looking for 'bad stuff' in life. On the contrary, we have built in protective instincts and we live in a society that promotes health and well-being and really encourages us to pursue happiness. To live through hardships (and we ALL have our share of them, no matter what they may be...) for me has changed me. It has changed us. I am thankful for that and see how it's such a matter of perspective in things that really matters most in how we 'survive' those crisis.
During Teagan's pregnancy {she was our first} I was depressed and consumed with the changes that a baby was going to bring to my life that I missed all the wonderful things that were happening to me. I missed chances to enjoy the time Chip and I had as just the two of us, because often I was voicing worries or concerns or just feelings of unhappiness. It sapped the fun and joy out of what should have and easily could have been one of the most wonderful 9 months of our lives.
Sometimes my heart aches so much about how I 'was' back then and how I regret being so selfish and focused on stuff that didn't matter in life. I sometimes feel that as difficult as our grief and loss has been, that it has been a wonderful gift at the same time, for it has opened my heart, mind and soul to beauty and joy that used to pass me by. The relationship that Chip and I have now is one that is stronger and deeper than I knew two people could share together. It is not without its moments- just as I still 'blow it' sometimes as a mom and friend and fellow traveler in this world. But still, I am humbled, even moreso at this time in my life than I think I have been at any other. I am thankful for the way that God heals and renews and offers us fresh starts and 'do-overs' in life if we are willing to move beyond our hurt and embrace what the future holds.
These are just some of my thoughts on a Tuesday morning. I continue to be inspired that life comes at us unexpectedly many times, but we still control our destiny. May you be inspired and encouraged to seek Joy as you walk your own journey in life- through whatever life sends your way.


paige said...

beautiful transparent entry jody!

~Lea~ said...

That Baby journal is just precious...I love the little mushroom!

Your posts are always so though provoking- I love reading them! I am not pregnant, but hopefully I will remember this whenever I am.

Have a great day Jody- you are wonderful!
~Lea L.

Lisa said...

your journal is so cute. i wish i had been a scrapper while i was pregnant.

your entry today, and everyday, is always something i need to hear! thanks for that!!

and now i'm back to your page, to sing along with david cassidy - i LOVE the partridge family - thanks for making me smile with that lovely tune!!

Mary Jo said...

You have inspired me :0)
thank you.

asnipofgoodness said...

This journal is terrific!! Thank you for telling it like it is, and reminding me to look back often and see how far my God has carried me!

Elaine said...

Thank you for your honesty...I enjoy reading your posts.
God bless...

angi said...

Your post reminds me of the song "I'm not who I was" LOOOOVE that song :)

I also love your journal, I used the hallmark ones with each of my pregnancies, but would have enjoyed making my own...too cute! You will treasure it, and so will your little one :)

~j~ said...

Thank you Jody for the reminder and the blessing of sharing your heart it is both an encouragment and a conviction and one i deeply appreciate.

mimisherry said...

Jody, as always you are a fine inspiration!!! Thank you for consistently being who you are and sharing that with all of us who enjoy reading your thoughts as we glean from your experiences and great wisdom. I have learned similar lessons thru the years and wish at times I could go back and do things over without all the fuss. I tend to naturally want everything to be just so and in that process lose some of the preciousness of the moments. As a grandmother I am given that other chance to ENJOY and relish every moment......you, my dear are learning it much earlier on thru the extreme realities of your life and experiences. I am glad you share what you know with the rest of us as a reminder to our hearts.
I remember you in my prayers and ask God to touch you and your precious little family!! You are just too cute and a true blessing in this world!!! God bless you Jody........Sherry

kate said...

beautifully transparent message of hope and redemption... thank you for sharing your heart... God bless you

Kara said...

As a fellow Bethel grad and scrapper, I really enjoy your blog! May God bless your family as you continue to grieve your precious Teagan and look forward to the new baby who will join your family.

Jan said...

"I am thankful for the way that God heals and renews and offers us fresh starts and 'do-overs' in life if we are willing to move beyond our hurt and embrace what the future holds."

Oh, I'm soooo thankful for that, too! I was dealing with some of my own traumatic childhood stuff for the first time when my children were little and oh, how I "blew it" so many times. I have so many regrets concerning my attitude and I, too, missed so much joy. But, still, I HAD to go through these things. I have since asked my grown children for forgiveness (and God!) and we are all okay, very tight, and we all look to God as our Creator, Healer and the God of second chances. And He has given me so many...

Thank you Jody, for yet another thought-provoking post that comes straight from your beautiful heart.


Christal said...

I love the song... Btw as you can tell I am still alive! Was shocked to read about baby! Congrats! I almost was ready to burst into a big cheer for you:)