Encouragement · Grief · Hope · wounded healer

Winter to Spring

It looks like I’m pondering in this pic. fullsizeoutput_457f.jpeg 

And I guess I am.

I’m pondering the weather.

When everything turns cold and bare, some of us tend to believe that it’s winter in our souls too.

It’s a kind of winter that seems like it will never end.

All the leaves on our Tree of Hope are gone, and we feel barren.

I have to admit that when Ryan was killed in the fire, it took years before there was anything green growing on my bare branches.

It’s when you think you have only one season in your life–winter.

And you get to where you stop expecting springtime and stay under the covers to sleep it off.

Maybe you’ve heard the voices in your head that keep saying, “Don’t get up, don’t get up!”

Can you identify?download

Or, is it like you have only one word in your vocabulary;  “Unfair!”

And it repeats like an echo.

Girl, I do understand the unfairness of life, and feeling like you’ve been robbed of your future.

You might be close to giving in or giving up.

That’s the bad news, but here’s the good news…Spring always follows Winter.

It’s as perennial as perennials.

And Spring is best spent with somebody you love. (“I” to “We”)

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Tyler(3)

Dawn

 

These are my thoughts today. Please join my daily Instagram @dawnraymondhirn

 

Encouragement · Family · Family travel · Relationship · Travel

Confession

Diving Heart-first into the Adventure from “I” to “we,” I had to stop reading about everybody else’s Adventure and remember that we’re on an Adventure ourselves. (It’s not too late).

Before we go on, I have a confession to make:

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Ryan ’94

I never really wanted kids in the first place.

I figured they’d just get in the way of everything that matters most to me.

But somewhere along the way, this ‘loner’ changed her mind.

Which led to Ron and I talking about family, children, and our future and found that we were on the very same page.

The birth of our first son, Ryan, was the most life-changing event of my life.

I learned that family relationships were paramount. But you probably already know that.

So, three children later, we packed up the boys and went on a 6-month around-the-world Adventure. And I saw immediately that they weren’t ‘in the way’ like I thought.

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I was wrong.

They were the way.

A blind man could see that the value of our time with our children took us down a whole new, and necessary, path of Adventure.

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St. Petersburg, Russia new family

On top of that, we found brothers and sisters we’d never met before, and it was our children who introduced them to us.

We were so much larger than just 1 family.

We are worldwide.

We are the universal family of God.

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Our new Indian friends in Agra, India

dawn

(We’ve started on our new Adventure together like we talked about last week, and I swear to you that it won’t be the same, for me, if you don’t come along.)

These are my thoughts today. Is there anything–dreams, thoughts or adventures–that I’ve missed?

 

Encouragement · Friendship · sisterhood

I cannot navigate this planet alone

It was a rude awakening for me to discover that I cannot navigate this planet alone.

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I’ve always been known as a Maverick. I dare people to tame me.

But, I’m learning that Relationships–God, family, and friends–are more important than anything. They’re more important than your resume, your reputation, your pay scale, or your feelings.

I know it sounds simple–opening your heart–but it sure ain’t easy. I’m not talking about my family right now.

I need Relationships outside my home. I need fellow strugglers, on-the-road.

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Fellow strugglers

I don’t think I’ve ever said that before. But I see now that we were born to connect.

Except for love, I think God’s favorite word might be “connect.”

Just connect.

I know this seems out-of-the-blue, but I hope what I’m saying lets you know how important you are to me. But I have to get it off the page and into my life.connecting

Are you tired of flying solo too?

You know there are competent copilots all around us.

 

I think it’s time to share the stick.

dawn

 

Daily Insta @dawnraymondhirn

Encouragement · Friendship · sisterhood · Travel

On the Road again…

Do you remember the first time you left your childhood home and moved everything somewhere else? We’ve all done it. This isn’t your first  “Road of Life Adventure.”

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I found that there are 2 kinds of travelers, those who are ‘leaving’ somewhere and others who are ‘going’ somewhere.

I’ve done both.

When I think about my first Move at 19–Georgia to New York City–I see now it was more like ‘leaving’ my home and my family; answering to no one–and giving myself endless permissions.

Now, for my next Move, I wasn’t ‘leaving’ anywhere, I was ‘going’ to Europe.

It’s not that I was ’leaving’ the USA, I was running toward my first big finish line.

And it was big, kind of like your first kiss.

But this is bigger than that.

We are accepting all the risks that come from being a stranger in a strange land.

Which is more typical of you, ‘leaving’ something or ‘going’ toward the finish line?

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me, at 19, backpacking Europe

Like I said, I understand both. I’ve done my share of running away.

You’ve got a week to think about it. I’ll do the same.

dawn

Daily Instagram @dawnraymondhirn

Encouragement · Relationship

Will you ride ‘shotgun’ with me?

“OK, Dawn, it’s 2019. What are you gonna do that’s different this year?valence (1).png

I’m glad you asked!  

2019 is gonna be scary-different than all the years I’ve lived thru.

I am moving into a new phase of my life, where the operative word in my vocabulary will be “we,” not “I.”

What I’m gonna do in 2019 is to ask you to consider traveling this Road of Life with me.

 Sharing dreams, thoughts, and adventures with each other; being honest with each other, even being blunt sometimes. fullsizeoutput_4574

Here is the question that everything revolves around:

“Can I be me, ‘warts and all,’ with you?”

 

 

I don’t know the answer to that, but I’m willing to invest this year in finding out if it’s possible.

I think that I’m willing to accept all the risks of moving from “I” to “we.”

But I know that there are a lot of miles to travel from “I” and “we.”

And I know there are dangers.

So I’m asking you again:

Will you ride ‘shotgun’ with me on this Adventure?

Because I think if I have a partner, I might really try it. 

 

Dawn

 

 

Daily inspiration on Instagram @dawnraymondhirn

 

 

 

Encouragement · Family · Hope

2019: Already in your heart!

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Some of us are just getting over the Christmas rush. I find that there is so much rushing around that we miss what’s going on in the moment. We spend so much of December focusing on the 25th that everything around it becomes a blur.  We end up letting our lists control our days and nights.

It reminds me of the play “Our Town” by Thornton Wilder where Emily, age 12, gets to come back to earth for one day. Nobody can hear or see her but she just watches her family and all her friends rush thru their daily routines. As her day ends she asks one question:

“Does anyone ever realize life while they live it…every, every minute?”

What Emily asks really hits me hard.

 I think about Ryan and I sometimes hear him asking me the same question, “Do you ever slow down, Mom, enough to see what’s going on?”

We all want to live in the present but nobody really does it.  Every month dozens of books about “Living in the Present” fly out of cyberspace and into mailboxes around the world. It’s an every-year resolution for many of us.

We are less than a week away from 2019. Another opportunity to begin again. The slate is not exactly clean because what we went through this past year really happened. But we have the chance to turn the page and begin a new chapter…and right there is the clean slate we’re all looking for!

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Colton, Tyler, Trenton

The New Year is already there in your heart. It is in your hands.

Happy 2019, Everyone!

dawn

 

 

Encouragement · Grief · Hope · wounded Mother

True Confession: My private ride on the Grief Train

Remember all the Stops: Denial, Anger, Depression, Survival. Acceptance.

I realize my grief is a little unusual–the grief of losing a child.

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It’s against the natural order that parents outlive their children.

The death of a child is unnatural and unfair.

It never occurred to me that I would bury my son.

It came out of nowhere.

And so for me, Depression lasted for years and years(12 years).

On the outside, no one could tell.

Not even me.

I acted my way thru so much during the first 12 years: the death of my father 6 months after Ryan; the births of my third and fourth sons; and our family’s move from Texas to Alabama.

Everything was on autopilot. My Depression happened on such a subconscious level that I couldn’t recognize it or name it.

But the symptoms were there: lack of interest,  low energy, and no creativity.

So, I got off the Train at the Survival Stop, built a home and am living there now.

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When you’re just surviving, the best thing you can do is survive, while fully functioning.

On our Train, Survival is a full Stop, and Acceptance is something I’ll take up later with the good Lord.

I’m surviving, but I’m not accepting Ryan’s death.

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Tyler’s HS Graduation ’18

 

 

I just can’t get there now, besides, I know the neighborhood here.

I’m not lost.

dawn