Archives for June 2014

Comfort-Giving and Receiving

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Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.    2 Corinthians 1:3-4

June 1st was the one year anniversary of the launch of our blog.  We wanted to take a moment to thank all of you who have been supporting us and reading our posts!  We hope that somewhere along the way this year, you have found some inspiration from our blog!

June 1st is also the anniversary of a very painful event in my life.  I was debating whether to share this post and talked it over with Jules.  She thought I should share, in the hopes that it may touch someone else who has been through this same experience.  Thirteen years ago on June 1st, I lost our second precious child to a miscarriage.  It was one of the hardest and darkest days of my life.  In one day, the hopes and dreams we carried in our hearts for this little one were gone.  I was overwhelmed with sadness and grief and it took me many months to move on from this loss.

In the midst of this sadness, I found comfort in God’s presence and in those He sent to comfort me.  As friends and family heard of our loss, I was surprised at the number of people that opened up and shared their own stories of  similar loss.  It was a comfort to know that I wasn’t alone and that I would survive this  grief and get through it.  As the Bible verse above states, God gives us comfort during hard times, so that we can then comfort others.  I found great comfort in those He sent to console me.  My sister-in-law, who had also recently suffered a miscarriage, gave me a special angel charm with the birthstone of the month our baby was to be born.  Someone also gave me an idea to keep a memory box.  That box contains congratulation cards and e-mails we received, and other mementos from the pregnancy as well as letters I wrote to the baby.  I look through this box in honor and memory of our child every year.  Everyone handles this type of loss differently, but this really helped me process my grief.  As the years passed, it did get easier to accept the loss.  This child will always be in my heart, but I was able to move forward.

Over the years, I have found that I have been on the other end of offering comfort to loved ones who have lost dear, precious babies.  Sometimes it is hard to understand why bad things happen, but I do believe we can take those experiences and find the positive in them and use those difficult times to help others.  Thirteen years later, I know that God had a plan for our lives and how our family was to expand.  After that loss, I was never able to have any more babies, but we found the perfect child for our family through adoption (which is a story I will share another day).

As you travel through life, I encourage you to look for opportunities to offer comfort to those around you who may be experiencing a similar difficult situation you have lived through.  You never know, you may be just the person God intended to be there to offer comfort and solace to the broken-hearted.

~Blessings,

Jen

Counting our Blessings

Happy Monday Everyone!

As many of you know I work in the mental health field as a Licensed Professional Counselor (I guess if you didn’t you know now!) This is a job that comes with many many heartaches with a few joys thrown in. I worried a lot about how I would handle the emotions when I was going to school. I tend to have a tender heart, and sometimes I’ve been told, you just have to harden it up a little bit. A supervisor I once had told me she didn’t think I would make it because I got too emotionally involved. I told her the day that I stopped caring would be the day I walk away from this profession. Well, she was right…just a little bit. I had to toughen up a little bit, not only for myself, but for the sake of my clients. This is probably one of the most rewarding and frustrating careers I’ve been in. I would like to share a recent “God Moment” that I experienced.  I have been working with this lovely lady in her late 60’s. She had been so depressed, hopeless and ready to give up. Our doc finally got her to a “manageable, but not really happy phase.” Now I am pretty sure that I have given her 101,000 different things to try and I am pretty sure she might have done one of them, then she would smile and say…”no, I didn’t, I’m sorry!” Recently I said,” I want you to call your doctor and get some blood work. Let’s make sure physically everything is ok.”  I saw her last week and the first thing she said was, “you put me in the hospital,” and the second thing she said was, “you probably saved my life.” Of the 101,000 things I have suggested she FINALLY listened to one and they did find something seriously wrong. She is being treated and now finding she is getting some hope and energy back. What a blessing. Do you suppose God whispered in her ear and told her to listen?? I like to think so!!

Very often I work with children whose parents are tearing them apart in their bitter divorce wars. I only wish they knew what they were doing to their children. I often work with soldiers who has come back from Iraq or Afghanistan with horrifying stories. It is cases like these that sometimes keep me up at night.When this happens I often think of the Bing Crosby song, “When I’m tired and I can’t sleep, I count my blessings instead of sheep, and I fall asleep counting my blessings. I have so much to be thankful for and sometimes I have to take the time to count all those blessings…start with the 4 blessings of my children and the 6 beautiful little blessings grandchildren. I have a wonderful, loving caring family….really I have more blessings that I can count. I encourage you to start thinking about all of the blessings in your life!

 

Blessings,

Julie

P.S. My heart is not hard and I care about each and every one of the people I meet who walks through my door!