Let’s do the Time Warp!
Welcome to the first installment of my new blog hop called Time Warp Tuesday here on Four of a Kind!
In case you missed my post about this last week, here is the background of how and why I came up with the idea. If you are here to participate and link up your post, you can do so with the Linky Tools at the end of this post (or if you have any difficulty using it, you can share the link to your post in the comment section here).
The gist of Time Warp Tuesday is to revisit and share some of our favorite blog entries from our archives and reflect on our journeys since we wrote them.
The topic for this week’s Time Warp Tuesday is: Waiting
In my post last week, I encouraged participants to look for a blog entry in your archives where you wrote about a time in your life when you were waiting. Maybe you were waiting for some news or important test results, or maybe you were waiting for something to happen that you were hoping would take place. Then write a new post on your blog about what has happened in your life since you wrote that blog entry.
Participants can write about whatever you want in your new blog entries. However, for those who might have needed some help and inspiration to get started, I shared some questions to consider:
How did things turn out for you? Did you get the news or results that you were hoping for? How has your perspective changed since the day you wrote that original post? Do you think you would still feel the same way now if you were writing it today? What have you learned about have to wait for things in your life since you wrote your original post?
Time Warp Tuesday: Waiting
The post that I chose from my archives this week, that relates to the topic of waiting, is called Waiting and Wondering…. I wrote it almost four years ago, on Wednesday, December 19, 2007. At the time I was 12 weeks pregnant with our second child, who had been conceived via our first frozen embryo transfer (FET). We had been struggling with secondary infertility and loss at that point for three years and were so happy to be finally expecting again. Prior to our FET, we had done two fresh In Vitro fertilization (IVF) cycles and one IVF cycle that was converted to intrauterine insemination (IUI), all of which were not successful.
A few days before I wrote this post I had begun spotting. We went to see our OB and had an ultrasound in which it was determined that our baby’s heartbeat was irregular and unusually slow for her gestational age (though we didn’t know she was a girl at the time). We were told that it was fairly likely that we would miscarry again (we had miscarried twice before and had an interstitial ectopic pregnancy), however we were also encouraged not to give up hope, as our doctors had seen cases like this where the babies turned out to be okay.
Please go and read the post that I am reflecting on today (and comment if you choose), if you haven’t already, and then come back here to see what I have to say about my journey since then.
***Here is where you left off before you stopped to read my old post.***
It’s surreal to look back at that time in my family and my life, knowing what we know now. I think when I wrote the post I was prepared (as much as anyone can be) to miscarry again, but had no idea what we were in for. The diagnosis and prognosis we would receive in the following weeks was devastating and gave us a crash course in congenital heart defects, fetal echo-cardiograms and Perinatal Hospice (though we didn’t know that’s what it was called at the time).
If you are not familiar with the story of and our journey with our daughter Molly, she lived to be just shy of 30 weeks gestation, when she was born and died on April 17, 2008. You can read an overview of her short, but very special life, here on her CarePage that we started not long after I wrote the post I am reflecting on today in December 2007.
Revisiting this old post brought back so many bittersweet feelings. It made me want to give my younger (and somewhat naive) self a big hug and try to prepare myself for the emotional roller coaster ride of my life (that I didn’t know I was about to get on). I wanted to tell my then 32-year-old self that this would be one of the hardest experiences that I have ever faced, but that I would get through our pregnancy with our baby girl and become a stronger and more compassionate human being through surviving it.
This part of my post was especially heartbreaking to read, as I can remember thinking these thoughts and believing that it was possible we could still get our “Christmas miracle,” that year:
I am doing my darnedest to remain optimistic right now and focus my energy on Sean and our family, especially with Christmas being less than a week away. I have no idea what is going to happen tomorrow. I want so much for our baby to be okay, to be healthy and to join our family next year. However, I trust that if our baby does not make it, though we all will be very sad, that this experience will only make us stronger and closer as a family as we celebrate our blessings and go forward during this holiday season and in the year to come.
My perspective has changed a lot since the day I wrote that original post. One of the biggest ways, that I know I have shared about over the years since then here on my blog, is that I used to believe that everything in life “happened for a reason.” However, after all we went through on our journey with Molly, I can no longer embrace that theology. That doesn’t mean I don’t think anything good came from our second child/first daughter’s life. I do believe that a lot of wonderful things came about in spite of and/or in light of her short life and her death.
My new take on why “bad” or “difficult” things happen to “good” people is not that God has this great predestined plan for all of us. Rather, I believe that God understands the pain we experience, wants to abide with us during our suffering and will gives us the grace to find and/or make good things come from the trials we face and losses we experience in our lives.
I tend to be an eternal optimist, so though our baby girl Molly’s death did bring some cynicism to my way of thinking, I would probably still do my best to remain positive if we were in a similar situation and I was writing about it today. Our subsequent pregnancy with our third child/second daughter Abigail “Abby” in 2009 was very difficult for me, as I was so worried that something could and would go wrong and we would not get to bring our “rainbow baby” home. However, somehow I managed to get through that experience and I was able to find joy during our pregnancy with her, even though I was scared that she might join her big sister in Heaven prematurely. One of the many reasons we have made a soft decision not to try to have any more children, is that I am not sure if I have it in me to get through another subsequent pregnancy after loss, even if it were possible for us to somehow conceive and sustain again.
Since I wrote that original post, I have learned a lot about waiting for things in my life. First and foremost I have realized that we are all in somewhat of a constant state of waiting and/or transition. Thus, I have tried to accept and make peace with that. I do my best to embrace ambiguity, live mindfully and try to find “joy in the journey.” It sounds cliche, but I believe that it is true and it is a lesson that I find myself being reminded of over and over again in my life.
We truly never know what day will be our last, or that of our loved ones, and too often I get caught up in the details, waiting for things to happen in my life. So reflecting on this old post and writing this new one is another opportunity to recommit myself to trying to make the most of each day, as opposed to focusing so much on what might or might not come to be in the future.
Thank you so much for reading and for taking this trip down my blogging memory lane!
I look forward to your feedback about this post, as well as reading and commenting on all of yours. Please feel free to comment even if you didn’t write your own Time Warp Tuesday post this week. It is not too late to participate if you are interested, click here for the details.
Below you will find next week’s topic and I hope that you will join me back here on Tuesday when we “do the Time Warp again!”
The topic for next week’s Time Warp Tuesday is: All-Time Favorite Post
In honor of the upcoming 2011 Creme de la Creme, in which we choose our favorite blog entry from this year to submit for Mel’s list that will go up on January 1, 2012, pick and share your “all-time favorite post.” Then write a new post on your blog about why you chose it and what has happened in your life since.
Participants can write about whatever you want in your new blog entries. However, for those who might need some help and inspiration to get started, here are some questions to consider:
Why did you pick this post? Of all the blog entries you have written over the years or months (depending on when you began blogging), what made this one stand out to you? Has your perspective changed since the day you wrote the post? If so, how? Do you think you would still feel the same way now if you were writing it today? What have you learned about yourself, your family and your life since you wrote your original post?
For those new to Time Warp Tuesday, here is a quick recap of how it works:
1) Browse through your old blog entries to find one that fits the topic for the given week. The topic is shared at the end of the previous week’s “Time Warp Tuesday” post here on my blog (see above for next week’s topic).
2) Write a new blog post in which you introduce, link to and then reflect on your journey since you wrote the older blog post and put it up on your blog on Tuesday. Please include this link http://chicagobensons.blogspot.com/search/label/Time%20Warp%20Tuesdays in your blog entry, so your readers can find their way to my post with the list of other participants, in case they would like to read more or participate themselves.
3) Share the link to your new post here on Tuesday and then visit, read and comment on the other blogs.
4) After you have done all of these things, you are welcome to grab the code for the the Time Warp Tuesday button by clicking here and put it on your blog. The link will take you to a Google Doc where you can copy the code. If your browser does not allow access to your computer’s clipboard, you can use Ctrl-C for Copy and Ctrl-V for Paste, or use your browser’s Edit menu.
5) Check back here every Tuesday to find out the new topic, theme or question for the following week (I welcome your ideas and suggestions) and then return to Step 1 of this recap to participate.
Please let me know if you have any questions and I hope to see you back here on next Tuesday when we’ll “do the time warp again!”
Thank you again for reading, commenting and participating in my very first Time Warp Tuesday blog hop. Link up below and click through to visit others who are doing the Time Warp! (If you have any trouble with Linky Tools, please share the link to your blog entry in the comment section.). Also, please don’t forget to comment on my post here, as I do not have a link to this (my own) post below, but I would still really appreciate your feedback. xoxo