Monday, July 23, 2012

The Journey...

So, I know sometimes I say or write something that others may see differently.

I mean, I can't be right all of the time, can I?

Ha ha.

In seriousness, though, I have to say I can't stand the usage of the word 'journey,' sometimes.

As in, "What a journey you've been through," or "This journey of yours has been quite amazing."

Honestly, I do NOT feel like the last three years have been a journey.

To me, a journey is something we have a choice in—decide to go to college?  Maybe a journey.

Decide to get married?  Maybe a journey.

Decide to change careers?  Maybe a journey.

Decide to keep breathing as you walk away from your dead baby's casket on a cold December day?

Forced survival.

Decide to keep breathing?

Love for your husband and hope for the future.

But journey?  Just don't know....

I meant it because I was (gasp) sucked into the last couple of Bachelorette shows—the home visits and her choice.

I nearly gagged as they talked about this amazing 'journey' they were on and wanted to continue.

So romantic.  So idyllic.

I don't unrealistic.

Over the last few years, people obviously have shared many of their lives' stories.

Some call them journeys.

That's ok!  Their words and lives to define!

Some even tell me they wouldn't change a single thing because though the 'journey' was difficult, so much was gained from it.

I think that is wonderful.  Truly.  I think it is a wonderful thing for people to be grateful.

It's just not me.

Do not doubt for one.single.second that I'd not choose this life I live.

It's a GREAT life.  An AMAZING life.  A life that I give God thanks for over and over and over throughout every day.

But it's a life where my babies died.  I had to bury one and have another mutilated and sucked out of my body.

And there is not a day that goes by that if given the choice, I'd not choose for it to be different.

Every day, I'd choose for Matthew to have lived.


Would Luke exist?
Would Trey exist?

I don't know.

But honestly, when people imply that I have to be ok with Matthew being dead because if he'd lived Luke wouldn't exist (and maybe not Trey either), I just....

Well, I bristle.

To me, that's like telling me I should be completely able to take a living Matthew and a living Luke, throw them both in the ocean and then choose one to save.


So, no, the euphamism of life being a 'journey,' is not one that fits me.

To me, life is a gift.

I may make choices that put me on different adventures and journeys (HELLO!  Marry a Marine and definitely prepare for a journey!)....

When I make those choices, that's when I'll call them journeys.

When things happen to me that are clearly out of my control, I'll endure and survive.

With as much gratitude as I can.


  1. Remembering some of these thoughts from you a while back has had me stop and think before I use the word journey... I understand what you mean and totally get it! I have used it over the years but think about it differently now and use it more sparingly than before. I don't think any word is really adequate to describe it, any of it. lots of love!

  2. I LOVE the way you use the analogy about putting both boys in the ocean and choosing one. I think that brings the real issue to life. No one should ever have to choose one child over the other or one should NEVER be "grateful" they lost a child so another could be born exist. You have truly taught me so much about the words I speak to those in times of loss.Love you!!

  3. Forced survival, indeed, dear friend. I am guilty of saying journey...just sounds prettier than, I don't know. The truth. But, you're right. There's nothing pretty about it. At all. Journey doesn't really fit. The lover of words in me may still use it. Hard to teach an old dog new tricks, and all. haha But, I love and appreciate this post, and your honest heart.

    Love to you...

  4. I have never thought about the word "journey" in that way and totally see your point. But I also think those people talking about their journeys aren't really talking about journeys either. Sojourns? I mean, really, what else can you call a 13-episode season? Not a journey. Forced survival, I agree with you on that.

    ICLW #27

  5. Thank you for your comment on my blog. I just read Matthew's birth story and the tears are streaming down my face. I am so sorry, and for your loss of Trey too. I do like your comment on tossing the boys into the ocean. So many people have told me that this is just a bump in my road and someday I'll have a healthy baby and it will all be worth it. But even if I do have a living child someday (which you can't guarantee I will), I will still love and miss Ryker, Tommy and MaryElizabeth. No one seems to get that. I'm 'supposed' to start trying again, because "I won't be happy until I have a baby" but you know what, I'm never going to miss my babies any less. Sorry...just needed to get that out. People who have not experienced a loss just do not get it.

  6. I never thought about the word "journey" like that before. I appreciate your words, Lori. I am guilty of using the word "path" as in "this path of grief and loss," but I definitely see it more of a forced march.

  7. I think of it more as an odyssey - it is epic and long. It is also a quest, a search or pursuit made in order to find or obtain something. To me a journey would more imply something happier.

    ICLW #33

  8. Stopping in for ICLW. I'm one of those guilty of using the word "journey," but you're totally right -- this is not a journey. This is survival. Treading water. I'm so sorry for your losses. My heart goes out to you. Wishing you the best as you go forward!

  9. I have been guilty of using the word 'journey' at the beginning. Until I realized that IF affected so much more than the baby making.

    Wishing you the best.

    An ICLW Visit from #63
    liddy @ the unfair struggle (mfi, speedskating, 1st 2ww)

  10. Your analogy about throwing the babies into the ocean is saving one is so appropriate. Three years after we buried our first born son and 3 months after a D&C for what I believe was a girl I carried for only 8 weeks. They are all my babies, I love them all. And in no way does the wonderful living brother they have make them any less and my heart any less grateful (bittersweet and hopeful) for wanting another living child. I wish those who have not suffered loss could understand that your heart never ever lets go of the love that you have for all three beautiful babies. Thank you for your post, so the rest of us can support each other through this "journey".