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Why a book…

Some people are awesome writers, famous authors with book series. They are on the Bestsellers list and widely known with an audience that awaits their next book. I am not one of them. I am Jill, a mom that has a story to tell. My little book started as a blog. A blog I started to work through 20+ years of feelings that had been tucked away. A place to talk out loud in hopes that maybe one person could be touched or even learn something similar. It was my “couch” in a therapist’s office. A therapist that maybe I should have sought out 20+ years earlier but didn’t think I needed.

When I first found my birth son online – I kept saying “This is so big!” – just SO MUCH emotion and floodgate of feelings that came rushing out like a huge wave in an ocean and I couldn’t swim. I needed a place to work through it all. Those feelings lead to all the feelings I had during infertility issues with my husband which lead to the feelings I had when we adopted our beautiful girls. These feelings kept on coming til present day. A full circle.

While I love talking, love being around people and love being an extrovert….this was a very humbling writing process for me. I wasn’t doing it for popularity. I wasn’t doing it to expose people I hold close to me. I simply wanted to share my story while working through things. I thought if all this writing helped me heal and process, then perhaps it could help others. At first I wanted to write a book with a collection of stories by other birth moms. I met with a friend/teacher/mentor who a long time ago said “You need to do something with your story”. I told her my idea and she suggested I start with my own story. So I did. I took my little old blog – took it entry by entry and turned it into chapter by chapter. I found a wonderful person to help me write it and my book was well on the way.

While I would love to sell millions of books, the whole real reason behind my book is to help others heal and understand. If it could help me work through feelings as a pregnant teen that I avoided for 20 years, then maybe I could help a pregnant teen NOW work through the same. There will always be a couple dealing with infertility issues and be heartbroken like Mike and I were. I can say to them “I understand”. There will always be excited not so patient parents waiting for their babies to “come home” and I can appreciate their wait and excitement. I can share those tears of joy when a birth mom reunites with a child she so selflessly chose adoption for. If I can help one person in any of those situations, then my book was worth it all.

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Twenty Eight Years…

       IMG_2618     I’ve sat here this past week looking through a journal from a dear friend, letter from my mom, cards from friends, letters from an old boyfriend and a thick folder of medical and adoption papers. All these items mean so much to me and every year at this time I pull them out and look through the pages of history that changed my life.

Twenty eight years ago…I was a scared 18 year old. I was about to experience a day in my life that would change me in so many ways. I still felt more like a child than an adult woman. I still needed my mom and dad. I was scared, anxious and didn’t realize the magnitude my life would change until 20 something years after. I was a pregnant young girl about to have a baby. A baby that I would not meet until shortly before his 23rd birthday. No longer a baby but a grown adult.

This “baby” turns 28 today. It warms my heart that for the last 5 years I have been able to wish him Happy Birthday in person…instead of wondering just how I should feel. I always would shed tears on this day and would feel so alone – no one could understand the depth of the feelings I had – even myself. I have grown into my feelings and understand them so much better now. I feel very blessed to be able to wish Joshua a Happy BIRTHday, celebrate him and have him in my life. June 16th is a beautiful day as it always has been – just less lonely, less messy with crazy emotions I couldn’t understand and now filled with happiness and love. Happy Birthday Joshua!

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Pastor… Piano Man?

I returned to an old venue this morning. One that my family and I would visit every week (well, almost every) for close to ten years. A venue filled with laughter, friendships, life, death, children, youth, adults, creativity, food, fellowship and prayer. This venue helped my children grow…helped my husband and I grow. We formed close friendships there. I am employed there. As we sat there today …the familiar seats, the familiar faces, arms swaying, singing along to a well-known and favored song, raising our cell phone lights high in the air, our eyes filled with tears. We were at church…not the Target Center or the Excel Center for a concert…but church. Our dear friend Paul – Pastor Paul was giving his last sermon at this venue – Rosemount United Methodist Church. He will be moving on to be the lead pastor at a new church. His sermon today was based on Billy Joel’s The Piano Man. Paul might be hands down one of the biggest Billy Joel fans I know. He loves this song and I have had the fun of hearing him belt it out a time or two at a favorite local ‘watering hole’. He nails it every time. Today however was his best performance yet. He had guitar in hand, harmonica to mouth, Sunday worship team lead by Laurie Herman as she played the piano and lots of back up singers in the congregation. His sermon went thru the lyrics of the song – telling us not to forget about life for awhile, but to embrace it and live it – all of it – the good, the bad and the ugly and trust God.  While it is hard to see our friend Movin’ Out of RUMC and taking his Uptown Girl Betsy with him, we are excited for his new venue and the leadership he will share with a new congregation…God must think he is really a Big Shot. And So It Goes my friend; I wish you well. Don’t become The Stranger we only see on Facebook ranting about the Twins…We love you Paulie Just The Way You Are!

Enjoy Paul’s rendition of Piano Man:

Piano Man by Paul Baudhuin

“So many faces in and out of my life – some will last, some will just be now and then. Life is a series of hellos and goodbyes; I’m afraid it’s time for goodbye again”  – Billy Joel