In class, this week we were to think about where we want to be in a year, where our life will be one year from today. Sometime when we grieve it is hard to look ahead even one day, so we are to try to look ahead and think about where we see our lives in a year. So this assignment we are to focus on what we want to change over the next year. For our photography assignment we were to pick a word that would represent our next year. We were to take pictures of objects that look like the letters in the word and then make a mosaic of that word.
My word for the next year is...Can you see it?
Over the next year, I want to start to dream again.
When Gideon went to heaven, all my dreams for my life vanished. I no longer wanted anything. At all. I just wanted to be in the past, to be with my son.
"But there are dreams that cannot be, and there are storms we cannot weather. I had a dream my life would be so different from his hell I'm living. So different now from what it seemed...Now life has killed the dream I dreamed."- I Dreamed a Dream, Les Miserables
I think these lyrics encapsulate how I felt. I stopped dreaming for myself. Life killed my dreams. When my son died, so did my dreams. I stopped desiring anything for myself. There were things I wanted, I wanted more children. I wanted Todd to finish Grad school. But, that was about it. No real dreams for myself.
I stopped dreaming big.
Before Gideon passed away, if I had a dream, I would go for it. I wanted to go to college and graduate, I did it. I wanted to get married to the man of my dreams, I did that. I wanted to go and graduate from Grad school, I did that. I wanted to get healthy, and I did that. I wanted to work in a professional theatre. I did it. I dreamed of taking fun vacations with my husband. And we did (as finances allowed). I wanted to have children. Now...that was a little more tricky. That was out of my hands and it was totally in God's hands. But I pushed as hard and I could, we got tested and did everything we could afford and emotionally handle to try to have a baby. But I went for it. And eventually, we were successful. I got pregnant with our miracle, Gideon.
I dream big and I go for it...until May 15th, 2011, when I heard the words "I am so sorry."...And life killed the dream I dreamed.
All the dreams I had before died Gideon went away. They were no more. I was a different person and so my old dreams became moot.
However, I had one more dream for our life, I wanted to give Gideon a baby sibling. It was the only big dream I had for our life. And we were blessed to be able to do that much quicker than expected and when I got pregnant with him, I began to have dreams for Silas. I hoped and dreamed of the day when he would make his arrival into the world. ...And I still dreamed for Todd to finish Grad school, pass his exam and get licensed by the state as a Counselor (which he did! woohoo!!).
I mostly focused on the here and now. For the first 16 months after Gideon went to Heaven, I focused on today or tomorrow. I focused on what God had for me that day. I focused on what God was speaking to my heart for that hour, or today or tomorrow. I kept my eyes focused on the here and now and found joy again and sought the Lord. But I would only see my life with the next month or so in mind. I had some dreams, but I kept them on the back burner, because I just couldnt put the energy into dreams that big. I focused on others in my life, focused on Silas as he was growing inside of me, focused on being excited about his upcoming arrival. I focused on him after he was born and focused on my little family. I kept my eyes turned to the Lord and made it one day or one week at a time. I spent a lot of time thinking about the past and thinking about the life I had with Gideon. I spent many hours thinking of the hours when he was inside me or the times he was in my arms. I thought (and still do) think about Gideon in Eternity and I await the day when I can see him again.
I had to choose to dream, it didn't come naturally to me anymore.
But, as I knew then, and I know now, there are so many good things in my life. So much to look forward to.
I look ahead to the days of raising Silas. Of everything he is going to accomplish. Of getting to actively be his mommy. I look forward to seeing as Todd grows his career and helps many people. I look forward to seeing all my nieces and nephews grow. I look ahead to spending time with Todd and taking vacations as a family. I look toward the times as I get to serve God and worship at His feet.
I look forward to dreaming again.
"The only thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams, is you." -Tom Bradley
For the next year, I want to dream for myself again. I still have dreams for Silas and dreams for Todd. I still have dreams for others, but I want to dream for me. I want to, over the next year, to imagine and dream of the big things again. Not just today and tomorrow, and not just next month, but for the rest of this earthly life. What does God want for me for now? What do I want to go after? Where do I want to be in one year from today?
"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe."-Anatole France
In one year from now, I want to have the ministry God has given me the heart for started and have it going strong. It is called "Gideon's Warriors." We are going to meet the needs of some of the baby loss parents in our local community. We are going to provide care packages for the mommies and daddies while in the hospital and give them resources and items for the weeks after they say goodbye to their baby. We also want to provide clothes and diapers for the babies to be dressed in. And I want to be able to give whatever items the hospital needs to make the horrible experience of having a baby die as easy as possible for the family. It is my heart to help the parents to see hope and to see the hope of Jesus and His love. That is just one of my ideas for the ministry. I have lots of ideas for Gideon's Warriors for the years to come, maybe some of them will happen and maybe some won't.
I am dreaming again.
I also want to get my certification and become a Life Coach that specializes in Grief. I am hoping that in the next year we have the resources for me to be able to take classes and be on my way to being certified. I want to be there for others as they walk this road of grief and to help them through the roughest times and to give them the tools to move forward with their life, but never leaving their loved one behind. It is my heart to give people hope in the future on this earth and a future in Heaven.
And for the next year, I dream of smaller scale things, like taking vacations with Todd and Silas. Like taking Silas to the zoo for the first time or his first time to ride on a carousel and a Ferris wheel. I want to see him experience life and watch it through his eyes. Over the next year, I want to keep working on photography and learning more about it and hopefully take some pictures that dont stink. haha. I want to learn more about editing pictures. I want to learn to sew better. I want to start singing again. I sing in church and at home (all the time, I probably annoy my hubby. haha), but I want to sing in the capacity I used to sing. I want to learn how to play the ukelele. I want to start writing a 2 different books. I want to start on a children's book and Todd and I want to write a book together.
I have dreams. In spite of my grief and maybe because of it. I know I dream again because I love my God and love my Gideon.
"Hope is a waking dream."- Aristotle
and maybe in a year, we will be trying for or expecting a baby brother or sister for Gideon and Silas...maybe...