Friendship · healing-over-pain · Hope · Relationship

Undercover Agents of Love

You’re not going to believe what happened to me last week in California!

I was attending the Phoenix World Burn Conference for burn survivors.

CpmiNB6JRLKvbPNtJbtTew.jpg
Steve Joyner

There were about 800 of us.   

I say ‘us’ because I’m a burn survivor too, along with my husband and son, Tyler, who was a baby when we had the car accident.

It was that car fire that changed our lives completely because we lost our 7-year-old son, Ryan, in the fire. 

About the conference…I had come here with an agenda.

Like sharing Ryan’s Burn Foundation with my  ‘burn-survivor Tribe.’

My peeps.

Let me tell you about something that happened every day of the conference and it was pretty scary.

You know the term ‘Open-mic,’ right? We could volunteer to stand-up in front of more than 300 people and tell our story.

 

It was raw.

The wounds became fresh again, but this time in a room without judgment.

Everybody was just Honest-to-God.

Our only currency was the truth… and trust.

IMG_7617
Junior, Esme and 2 aunts

I could tell you about Esme and Junior(90% burned) who lost their 12-year-old big brother in a house fire. 

bs-joe bandit 2
Sam “no-hands bandit”

Or, I could tell you about Sam, the “no-hands bandit,”  who was electrocuted by so much voltage that it fried both his hands off. 

BS-Joe
Joe, Carrie and I

I could tell you about Joe.

He was in the middle of a nightclub fire that killed his girlfriend and 99 other people who were just dancing to the music and the next thing they knew they were on fire. 

Wait!

You know what I’m going to do?

I’m going to introduce you to these heroes in my next few blogs. One-at-a-time.

You must meet these Undercover Agents of Love.

ol+Qi19%SBC6gB84DnqQ7g.jpg
me, Jason, Sam, Sarah and Billy(worm)

Come open-hearted and ready to trust.

I guess it always comes down to a matter of trust, doesn’t it?

dawn

BTW-(If this is something that you would like to support, please visit us at www.ryanshines.com or follow us on FB and IG @dawnraymondhirn)

Friendship · Relationship

Giving their lives

Can you imagine every time you go off to work you’re putting yourself in harm’s way?

(And here I am afraid of roaches.) 

Having met hundreds of Firefighters, every time I watch them work together, I am stunned by their compassionate Souls.

firefighting group

 

And their instinct to rescue, anyone or anything that is in danger.

It’s in their DNA. These remarkable people are a breed apart.

A blind man can see that.

So, let me ask you, “Would you consider running into fires for a living?” They do. Everyday.

I’m not saying they’re gods.

They are human beings like us.

But it’s their passion that sets them apart. It is their curse and their blessing.

They live between a rock and a soft place. 

Trust me, I know what I’m talking about here.

Screen Shot 2019-07-02 at 9.26.28 PM

I live in the South. In Alabama.

Can you believe that we’re ranked #2 in Firefighter suicide over work-related deaths in our country? And it’s prevalent nationwide. 

In the face of all this, I feel ashamed for not observing that these quiet heroes, imprisoned by workplace heartache and trauma, want to end their lives.

Why don’t they just ask for help? Because…

It’s not in their job description. Their job is to save others, not themselves.

Which means that it’s our job to support those who risk it all to rescue others.  

IMG_2298 2

Next week, I’d like to talk about how Ryan Shines offers support.

dawn

BTW-(If this is something that you would like to support, please visit us at www.ryanshines.com or follow us on FB and IG @dawnraymondhirn)

 

Family · Friendship · Relationship

Com-PAN-ioning

“The word is ‘’pan.’’

It means ‘’bread’’ in most every language.

IMG_3422.JPG
Trenton & Colton w/ Singapore friends

It suggests that ‘’breaking bread” together is at the heart of our companioning with God, family, and friends.

This is the center of our journey together that we’ve talked so much about.

There is an episode in the Book of Revelation where Jesus says, “I am knocking at your door. If you will answer and let me come in, we will eat together” (Rev. 3:20).  

What if Jesus is saying that eating together is a key to building relationships?

That he would choose food that we are homesick for?  A table is heavy with good grub. Think back for a moment over all the great meals you’ve shared. 

Did you ever feel that the one sitting across from you is the richest choice on the menu?

bread companioning.jpgIt suggests that ‘’breaking bread” together is at the heart of our companioning with God, family, and friends.

This is a part of our journey together that we’ve talked so much about.

There is an episode in the Book of Revelation where Jesus says, “I am knocking at your door. If you will answer and let me come in, we will eat together” (Rev. 3:20).  

Jesus might be saying that eating together is key to building relationships. Think back for a moment over all the great meals you’ve shared. 

Did you ever feel that the one sitting across from you was the richest choice on the menu?Screen Shot 2019-02-20 at 3.39.44 PM.png

dawn

Exclusive Instagram content @dawnraymondhirn. Loved for you to join me there.

Encouragement · Friendship · Perfecting Dysfunction · Relationship · Travel

If it is to be, it is up to me

The theme of my life used to be, “If you want a job done right, do it yourself.”images-2

And if I’m honest, and I am, it’s still mostly the theme of my life. 

You get what I’m saying, right?

When I think about all my years of mothering, I realize that most of it was on me.

In other words, partner or no partner, life is a ‘’Do it yourself.’’

So, what in the heck am I doing pushing all of us to make this “important’’ move from “I” to “We”?

Is it even workable in a mother’s life?

Most of us want a partner who’s really a partner.

That means moving from “I” to “We”.

IMG_0235

Which necessitates moving from “I” to “We”.

But I hesitate to say that because it might turn into one more thing on our ‘to-do’ list.

Then I remember we are traveling together on this Adventure, and the way I look at it, there’s no mountain we can’t climb.

Look. download

Here’s what I know for sure.

Not even Jesus could “do it himself.”

He had to find 12 friends.

dawn

 

These are my thoughts today. Is there anything–dreams, thoughts, adventures–that we share today?

Daily IG @dawnraymondhirn

 

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.

img_3342

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.

New relationships
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.”

woman suitcase.jpg

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?

IMG_0178
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

Friendship · Relationship · sisterhood

hearts full of Hope

I’m glad you’ve agreed to partner with me on our Adventure. But, first, I need to warn you about something.

Do you remember the poster of the robo-cat hanging onto the rope with a knot on the end? It’s the one with the caption, “When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on?”img_3342

I have lived by this manta as long as I can remember.

Everything about it sounded true.

It was the only way I knew to be safe&secure.

But, like cotton candy, you take a big bite, get the explosion of sugar, then when you bite down to savor it, it’s already gone.

But we’re here talking about something that lasts: moving forward from “I” to “we.’’ It’s a fairly scary move in that it’s all about trust. The opposite of fear is ‘’trust.’’

I have a friend who’s dad took him into the backyard with one of those kitchen ladders, and he told his young  son, “Step up to the second step, turn your back to me, and just fall into my arms.”trust boys

So the boy did.

And his dad stepped aside so that the boy crashed to the ground. His dad leaned over him and said, “The sooner you realize you can’t trust anyone, the better.”

No wonder this guy has been tying a knot in the rope and hanging on for more than 60 years. But I think, for the first time, he’s slowly beginning to trust again.

I understand how this feels. Especially when it comes to relating to women. It’s my instinct to tie a knot in the rope and hang on all by myself, never entertaining the possibility to trust. But lately I’m hearing a quiet voice, maybe God’s own Voice, that says, “Go for it, Dawn. Take a chance. Then, take another chance.”

trust

Believe it or not, I want to trust women’s intentions again.

I hear myself, sometimes, sounding so cynical and I’m not positive I can change.

There are no guarantees, but maybe it’s enough that we travel together with hearts full of Hope.

dawn

Instagram daily @dawnraymondhirn