My Journey to Joy

February 16, 2015

Not Right Now

Filed under: Songs for the Journey — aunthoddy @ 5:00 AM
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October 25, 2012


Filed under: Contemplations — aunthoddy @ 5:00 AM
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Last week I spoke publicly, sharing our story with a group of ladies.  Most of what I said was taken off this blog.  It was a willpower vs. emotions decision.  I determined to do it, but worried and dreaded it.  I knew that I would certainly lose my composure.  I knew that I would be making myself extremely vulnerable to people who would be talking about my life; some details would be recounted correctly, some not. 

The day I was to speak, I began to worry even more.  I became convinced that no one was interested, this wouldn’t be helpful in the least, and everyone would just wish I would stop talking so they could move on the next thing.  I doubted that I could speak loudly and clearly enough, and that anyone would understand what I was trying to say.  I regretted intensely having agreed, but at the same time stubbornly hung onto the thought that God might use this to help someone.  I asked Him again to get glory from my fumbling attempt to relate just a piece of what He’s done.  My friends prayed for me, and supported me as they have always done.

And I spoke.  Most of what I anticipated was accurate.  I fell absolutely to pieces- sobbing, sniffling, and even snorting!  I’m sure some of the audience didn’t have a clue why I was so upset over something they’d never even worried about.  I stumbled through with a wet face, unnaturally high-pitched voice, and frequent pauses.  It was horribly presented.

But some “got it” anyway. Ladies came up to me and shared stories.  Stories of theirs, of their families, and of their friends.  And they asked questions.  And they wanted to know how to support someone going through the same struggle.  And infertility has a face.  And adoption isn’t just a word.  I’d do it again…

September 20, 2012


Filed under: Contemplations — aunthoddy @ 5:00 AM
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Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.  Galatians 6:2

I have been so blessed!  There are so many good things in my life right now, that I can hardly take them all in!  I’m still writing in my gratitude journal, gift after gift after gift.  But I still hurt.  I hurt for people I care about.

I hurt for my friend E.  She has been so excited about finding an amazing surrogate in A.  She borrowed money, made plans, said prayers, sent gifts.  She had three and a half days to celebrate her baby’s life, then it was over.  Now she’s hurting, oh so much, and I’m hurting with her.

In my season of pain, that was the greatest gift anyone gave to me.

Another friend, H, is hurting physically.  All of the time.  I hurt with her, too.

M’s family is full of hurts, and she grieves and prays over them.  I do too.

Open arms leave the heart unprotected.”  ~Lizzie’s Mom  🙂

It costs to care.  I can’t take on the world’s burdens, but I want to be listening for who God will whisper on my heart.  In the midst of horrific pain, sometimes we need to be carried by someone who cares.  So many people have cared about me.

For unto whomever much is given, of him shall be much required… Luke 12:48

A few months ago, someone told me something that has been incredibly freeing: Sensitivity isn’t a bad thing.  Being a “sensitive person” is not weakness, it’s what makes it possible to care for others.  So all of those times that I apologized for my “thin skin,” pushed down feelings, or held back tears?  I have a different perspective now.  The next time someone tells me “You’re so sensitive” I’ll try to take it as a compliment.  Because that’s how God made me, and it’s the reason I can rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.  Romans 12:15

February 9, 2012


Filed under: Contemplations — aunthoddy @ 5:00 AM
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Recently my friend’s wife posted on Facebook that she was doing her first load of “baby laundry.”  They’re expecting this month, and it has been delightful to observe their progress.  We’ve seen pictures of a tiny “baby bump” grow larger and larger.  We knew the day that the baby’s furniture arrived, and the proud father-to-be assembled it.  We heard about showers, gifts, and plans.  We’ve gotten to celebrate this part of their lives, because they’ve shared their joy.

Things are a little different in our household.  Yes, I’ve done baby laundry.  We purchased furniture, set up a nursery, made lists of whom to call and what to pack.  But you didn’t hear about it.  We haven’t had showers.  Our situation comes with unique aspects and challenges, and a greater chance of disappointment.

A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.  Ecclesiastes 4:12

To be honest, many times the announcement that someone has brought home their baby is the first I knew of an adoption.  It was pretty intimidating to “let the world know” that we were adopting.  “What if…” has run through my mind a million times. 

This journey has not been an easy one.  To date, the news I’ve  had to tell has been mostly disappointing.  But that’s worth sharing too.

Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2

I’ve certainly been humbled many times through this process.  We’ve opened ourselves up to criticism, thoughtless remarks, and gossip.  I would do it again.  The support we have received has been priceless.  Priceless.  My relationships have deepened.  And I hope I have helped someone else who is experiencing pain. 

I am a firm believer that there is a two-fold power in telling our stories: In the telling, we are healed and in the hearing, someone else finds that they are not alone. And to the person who needs to know that, it really does matter. ~Kirsten Petermann

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