About 8 years ago I felt like I needed to start openly talking about my experiences as a birthmom (I placed a son for adoption almost 20 years ago). I started by volunteering at a local adoption agency and participating in their support groups for other pregnant young women considering adoption and other birthmoms (this is right when I met Katelyn). Shortly after volunteering I began speaking and sharing my experience to audiences all over Utah and Wyoming and at adoption conferences.
At the beginning whenever I would share my life experiences (because they included so much more than just adoption) I would need to recover for about 3 days. Numerous emotions would surface and I would doubt the reasons I shared them. It wasn't fun to talk about my struggles and pains.
So one night after returning home from a speaking engagement, I started to cry... and cry... and cry. I looked up and cried to God.
"Why do I have to share these hard things? They hurt and I don't want to anymore".
I felt like I was waving my dirty laundry for the whole world to see. I felt exposed. I felt naked on the inside.... and it was very uncomfortable.
The answer I received next was surprisingly to say the least. In my mind, I heard the words "This experience is no longer yours".
My mind opened in wonderment. If the experiences were no longer mine and almost didn't belong to me anymore, then WHO are they for?
This is the moment I understood that once I have experienced challenges and pains of many kinds then it is almost my responsibility to share them (when prompted to do so) with others who might need it now.
I strongly believe we are all connected and we can help a lot of people by sharing the lessons we learn or simply to help comfort when only we can (because we've gone through something similar).
A while ago I studied the word Courage and the Latin root it comes from. .
The first part comes from Cor or Cordis which means:
The last part of the word comes from the latin suffix "age" which means "the act, the result of, or state of".
Quite literally COURAGE means the act of sharing your heart, intellect, judgment, mind, soul, spirit and soul.
When you are sharing your personal experiences you are showing great courage and strength. You may have an occasional negative reaction from someone... but I say ignore them. Because MORE often than not you will get waves of people thanking you for your vulnerability and authenticity. This is the place we serve from.
Sharing your life, your experiences, and challenges also bring a feeling of freedom. It liberates you from the opinions of others.
It reminds me of a quote I heard once "What other people think of me is none of my business". So true.
We all have pain.
We have all made mistakes.
We all struggle at times.
We all hurt.
And it all is a little more bearable with people to share in that journey. Please be open to sharing more, mourn with those that mourn, and comfort those who need comfort.
One of the things I love most about the purpose of this website is to provide a place where we can all openly share our challenges and difficulties and then be a support to others who are struggling with something similar. We are ALL ONE in purpose and are lionesses at the gate of our homes.