Time Warp Tuesday: Left Behind

by Kathy on August 14, 2012 · 11 comments

in 9/11, Bereavement, Blog Hops, Gatekeeping, Grief, Healing, Life, Loss, Molly, Peace, Suicide Prevention, Therapy, Time Warp Tuesdays

Let’s do the Time Warp again!

Welcome to the twenty-second installment of my blog hop/writing exercise called Time Warp Tuesday!

For those not familiar with Time Warp Tuesdays, which I host on the 2nd Tuesday of every month, here is the background of how and why I came up with the idea. If you are here to participate and link up, you can do so with the Linky Tools at the end of this post (or if you have any difficulty, you can share the link to your post in the comment section).

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.

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The theme for this month’s Time Warp Tuesday is: Left Behind

This month’s writing prompt was to look for a blog entry in your archives where you wrote about what it feels like to live on after the death of a loved one.  The person’s passing may have been sudden and unexpected or possibly they died after battling an illness. Your post may have dealt with what that loved one meant to you, special memories you have of them and/or how you were coping and incorporating their legacy into your life at the time. As always, feel free to interpret this topic however you choose. Then write a new post on your blog about why you chose the post that you did 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 have needed some help and inspiration to get started, here are some questions to consider:

Why did you pick this post? Has your perspective changed since the day you wrote your original post? Do you think you would still feel the same way if you were writing your post today? What have you learned about yourself, your family and your life since you wrote your original post?

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Time Warp Tuesday: Left Behind

Eight months ago today, on January 14th, I shared my first Gatekeeping post here. I was inspired to do so after a loved one committed suicide in December.

I wrote my original Gatekeepers post three months earlier in September 2011, when I was still coping with the death of another loved one in April that year.

I wanted to do something to reach out to others who might be struggling, both those contemplating taking their own lives and those were having a hard time coping with the circumstances of their lives, though not feeling suicidal. That resulted in this post:

Gatekeeping (1st Edition)

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 I wrote it.

***Here is where you left off before you stopped to read my old post.***

I was so moved by the reaction to my post that I decided to make it a monthly series. I don’t do it on the same date every month, rather I wait for the spirit to move me. I am always amazed how one or more people will comment on my timing and how much they appreciate sharing their answers, to the two questions that I pose, on my blog or in a private email.

As for what has changed since I started “Gatekeeping”…

With help from a therapist that I began seeing around the time I started this series, I have been able to work through my feelings and emotions related to my loved ones’ deaths.

Therapy helped me to see that part of why their deaths hit me so hard was that we were close in age and it broke my heart to think about what their lives could have been like if they had survived and learned to cope with their circumstances differently. My therapist suggested that a common thread between their deaths is the idea of “missed potential.” She also said my grief related to the death of our baby girl Molly could also be in part that I am mourning her “missed potential,” since her life ended so soon after she was born.

Another factor in my being able to process my loved ones’ deaths has been being in contact with some of their siblings. Having the chance to discuss with them what happened and how they are feeling and dealing with their losses has helped me to cope with my own sadness.

Though we never get over the death of our loved ones, as I learned after Molly passed away, we can learn to live without them. We can also find ways to honor their lives, especially through how we choose to live our own.

As I have shared here before, I find peace, comfort and validation through reaching out to others who are also bereaved and/or struggling to cope and find joy during difficult and uncertain times in their lives. I hope that my Gatekeepers series will continue to be therapeutic for those who participate each month and choose to let me know how they are feeling, as well as what their plans are for the days to come.

Wherever this post finds you today, I want you to know that I care and send peace, love and light your way.

Thank you for reading and for doing the Time Warp with me this month! 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. It is not too late to participate if you are interested, click here for the details.

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The topic for the next Time Warp Tuesday (on September 11th) is: 9/11

When I realized that the next Time Warp Tuesday falls on September 11th, the topic choice seemed obvious. Look for a blog entry in your archives where you wrote about 9/11. It can be a post in which you wrote about where you were and what you were doing that day or a something else related to your thoughts and feelings about this tragedy in the USA and our world’s history. Then write a new post on your blog about why you chose the post that you did 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? Has your perspective changed since the day you wrote your original post? Do you think you would still feel the same way if you were writing your post today? What have you learned about yourself, your family and your life since you wrote your original post?

Note: If you have an idea for a future Time Warp topic, theme and/or writing prompt, please feel free to share it in the comment section or send me an email. If I choose to use your idea, I will give you credit and link to your blog that month.

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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 month. The topic is shared at the end of the previous month’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://bereavedandblessed.com/projects-regular-series/time-warp-tuesdays/ 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 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 on the 2nd Tuesday of the month to find out the new topic, theme or question for the next Time Warp Tuesday (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 next month: Tuesday, September 11th (the 2nd Tuesday of the month), when we’ll “do the time warp again!”

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Thank you again for reading, commenting and participating in my 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


{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 April August 14, 2012 at 1:56 pm

Beautiful post, Kathy. I admire you so much for your continued offerings of comfort and care. Your words are always special and meaningful.

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2 Kathy August 14, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Thank you so much April. I really appreciate your thoughts and kind words. So glad that you chose to do the Time Warp again this week/month!
Kathy recently posted..BlogHer`12: Time of My LifeMy Profile

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3 Lori Lavender Luz August 14, 2012 at 6:49 pm

I really like what you said about missed potential. Perhaps that’s one reason why the death of an elderly person, while the grief is still hard to bear, seems a degree less tragic than the death of a younger person. And why the death of Molly is so difficult to ever comprehend.

As are deaths by a person’s own hand. For the avoidability factor. A permanent solution to what is often a temporary problem.
Lori Lavender Luz recently posted..Time Warp Tuesday: Left BehindMy Profile

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4 Kathy August 14, 2012 at 8:38 pm

Thank you Lori. I appreciate your observation about “missed potential.” I agree that the age of the deceased makes a difference when it comes to that. However, no matter how old a person is when they die, it usually feels too soon for all those whose lives and hearts have been touched and blessed through knowing them.

I also echo your sentiment about how difficult it is to comprehend the death of a child, especially a baby. That makes me think about the time we spent hanging out with your daughter at BlogHer and the special conversation she and I had about Molly. Please tell Tessa how much it meant to me to get to talk with her about my baby girl and to know that she cared.

Finally, comprehending how anyone can take their own life is baffling to me. But I try to make peace with the deaths of those I know who chose that out by believing that they were mentally unstable and thus not in a place to fully realize what they were doing. The availability factor breaks my heart and has kept me awake many nights wondering why.

Thank you for doing the Time Warp again!
Kathy recently posted..Dear Extra Special OB Nurses,My Profile

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5 Justine August 14, 2012 at 10:00 pm

Beautiful post, Kathy. I appreciated you sharing how you worked through your grief in therapy, and the realization about “missed potential” that helps me to understand my own reactions to loss, too.

I think that it speaks to your generous spirit that you’ve been able to turn your grief and loss into outreach … you are a gift to so many others.

I love the line about honoring your lost loved ones by the way you choose to live your life. Indeed … that’s how they live on, not just in our hearts, but as real, living forces in the world.

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6 Kathy August 14, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Thank you Justine. I am glad that my sharing is helpful to your own healing and processing. I really appreciate your kind words, as always. Thanks so much for doing the Time Warp again!
Kathy recently posted..NaBloPoMo: The Ripple EffectMy Profile

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7 Amy O'Connell August 14, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Kathy,

The timing of reading this is amazing. Only very, very recently have I become aware that sharing and listening to others pain can bring me some peace. I can shed some anger. I am so very glad that I reached out to you. Doing the Time Warp has been a wonderful therapeutic experience for me today. I also identified some of my Gatekeeper’s and how they continue to hold me up when my own strength isn’t enough.

I also loved Missed Potential as I find myself constantly thinking what Madeline might have been doing if SHE was 3 this summer.

Thank you for your care and guidance.

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8 Kathy August 14, 2012 at 10:52 pm

Thank you Amy and you are so very welcome! I am so glad that you reached out to me too and that Time Warping has been therapeutic for you.

It is so bittersweet to think about where our children might be today if they had lived longer. My Molly would be 4 years old now and that is surreal for me to imagine.

I really loved reading both of your blog entries and am so glad you did the Time Warp with us this week/month. I hope you will join us again in the future!
Kathy recently posted..Thursday’s Voice: Weeks Five & SixMy Profile

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9 Mud Hut Mama August 15, 2012 at 5:58 am

I love your gatekeepers series and especially your intention behind it. I am really enjoying getting to know you through your blog and I admire the honesty and compassion in your writing as you share your life. You have a beautiful ability to share both the sorrow and the joy in a way that honors them both.
Mud Hut Mama recently posted..Learning How to Make a Wedding CakeMy Profile

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