hi there. it’s been a while. sorry. there’s been so many times i wanted to write you and tell you i’m lost but i couldn’t even bring myself to do that. admit it. i’ve thrown myself into work, to distract. avoid. and paradoxically i started seeing a therapist, to focus on the pain and address it. neither avenues felt good. but i’ve been able to screw my head back on after the trauma of my last loss, and here i am. not much has happened since may.  besides the avoiding. and the focusing. and then more avoiding. and lots of boxes of kleenex. but that’s okay. i’m standing again, not tall, but at least i’m not on the floor. what’s also happened is life went on. more of my girlfriends had babies and got pregnant. and the knife dug deeper in my heart. not that it’s anything purposeful on their part, it never is. but it never gets easier to hear, or see. never. that is as real as the air i breathe.

and so i go back to avoiding. and i make apologies. but i have to protect my heart or i will not be me, i will not be standing. it is this very real possibility that forces me to ask my pregnant friends to give me space. because it’s not fair of me to ask them to pretend they aren’t carrying a life inside of them. it’s not fair to ask them to purposely avoid acknowledging a wonderful enormous life event happening to them, to save me pain. and the majority understand this. not all, but most. and that’s okay too. sometimes it’s when life is the hardest we learn who will stick by us no matter what. or we find people who we didn’t know were even there, are the ones to lift us up.

a childhood friend of mine, who happens to be an amazing photographer as well as an amazing individual, was one of those people who “i didn’t know was there”. we’ve been friends since elementary school, and life has woven our friendship in and out. she is someone who i can see after a 3 year absence and pick right up again. she approached me to participate in a project that was calling her heart. she wanted to shine a light on people whose stories resonated, who are on a journey of pain but finding the hope in the dark. i told her i wasn’t the person she wanted. hope? that’s hilarious. after all my pain, it doesn’t exist. she wouldn’t take that as an answer.  i spent a long time contemplating her offer. why does anyone want to hear me sob about this anymore? i told her i have the hurt part of the project covered, no problem. the heart section, easy. but i got nothing for hope. and she persisted, and i reluctantly agreed.

and then somehow in her magical way of pulling my story out of me, while the camera clicked quietly, she found some slivers of hope i didn’t know i still had within me. i wanted to share her project with you all. not so that you pity me. i don’t want your pity. i want you to know that even when you’re drowning, and the darkness is overwhelming know that the light is there. you just can’t see it yet, but it will not falter. it will remain, and all it takes is someone showing it to you.

my friends, i give you the HURT, the HEART, the HOPE. for more #hurthearthope stories visit

The Hurt. The Heart. The Hope. // Jodee