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April 17, 2015

Hi, I'm Jenna.


I know you all know that, and I know that I introduced myself when I began this blog, but I feel that my name has an all new meaning at this point in my life and I'm learning how to begin the journey with "Hi, I'm Jenna."


It's been almost 7 months since I've lost my boys, and the person I was 7 months ago, 4 months ago, and even yesterday I am a different person. I've come to realize that Jenna is made up of different people, different emotions, different outlooks, as I feel that we all are.


I am a certain way around certain friends, around my husband, around my children, around my children around other children, around church, around ReGroup, etc. I put on some great faces, and I fill in the blanks based on those people. For example, if I'm sitting in ReGroup, which is a place at Summit Church for those learning to work through any hurts, healings, and hang up's, and I am asked "How are you," I will be able to say, "I'm broken." If I'm sitting in a room filled with mom's that know bits and pieces of my story, but not quite the whole thing, and I'm asked, "How are you," I'll answer, "Good, soooo busy." Are you catching my drift here?


Hi, I'm Jenna, and I've come to the conclusion that I am a people pleaser.


I always have been but you add in grief, it takes it to whole new level that causes mountains of anxiety, and this lady is tired of climbing the slopes.


It's exhausting always putting on a face for certain people, working hard to prove I'm something to other people, and it's exhausting getting let down.


I was in Friday Mom's and we were asked to take a test to see what type of personality we were. I was named a Helper. Now you'd think that was a good thing, but helper can actually have some negative consequences, as well as negative motives behind it. Now don't get me wrong, God has called us all to help others, especially to our husbands. He clearly states that he created Eve to become Adam's helper, but what I'm learning is that there is an issue when we figure out the why behind the helping.


If I'm trying to help you to please you, I'm failing my calling.


If I'm trying to help you to please me, I'm failing my calling.


If I'm trying to help you because I know it will please Jesus, I'm failing my calling.


But I'm trying to help you because I wholeheartedly feel your pain and love you with all my means, then right there, that's when I'm doing it right.


We were not put on this Earth to make other's happy, and for some reason, I've hired myself at this impossible job to make you happy vs. bringing you joy.


There's a difference in happy and joy. You can have joy and not be happy. You can be happy and not have any joy. It's just figuring out what exactly is making you happy that digs deep beneath the surface.

Being a people pleaser is an exhausting job that leaves you worn thin by the end of the night. It leaves you feeling unworthy, unnoticed, unpleased, and a feeling of lost joy, because when you think about it, if I'm working so hard trying to please you, I'm losing sight of me.


The problem with people pleasing is that if you're not thanked or even acknowledged, then you feel unworthy. Jesus doesn't want us to help others to be acknowledged. Mistake number one.

Jesus doesn't want us to help others to feel worthy. Mistake number two.


And here's the thing, we have already been acknowledged- DUH! The Creator himself created us in his own image, so perfectly, so timely, so ah, I can't even choose a word to describe the amazing- ness of his work in creation. AND (!!) He's already called us to be worthy. We ARE worthy. We ARE loved.


So why put on this job of impossible? Why carry on this 50lb rucksack just to weigh you down? What's the purpose? Where's the joy?


So how does this fall in with the boys? It's everything with the boys, and it took losing the boys for me to realize it.


I've been fighting with myself, not only trying to please those around me, but even trying to please myself and to please Jesus himself.


Wow. Now that's pretty powerful to admit.


Guilt is when you say, "I've done something."


Shame says, "I am something."


I feel shame in losing my boys. Now I know this is a really negative way of thinking, and I know that through this journey, God is teaching me to change my thoughts. What you focus on grows. Hmm.

I felt shame in getting pregnant with the boys. Now, this is getting deep but bare with me.

I was scared to tell those around me that I love that I was pregnant because they knew our financial situation at the time, and they knew that having two more babies added into the mix would be very very hard. Not impossible, but definitely hard.


Today, I feel shame in actually feeling shame of being pregnant. I mean COME ON!! What a joy it is to be pregnant, and especially with TWINS!! If that's not a blessing then I don't know what is! God looked at me and he said, "Her, she's the one, the special one, and I choose her to give these precious gifts to." I close my eyes and I picture him looking at me, a smile on his face, and joy in his heart as he chose me.

That takes that shame away. His look, his thoughts, his choice takes that shame away, and I am at peace.

I feel shame in hiding my pregnancy. Why did it take me so long to share with the world? Why was I so scared of telling others that I was living in a hospital for so long, praying, and begging that those that knew to pray too. Had I not been feeling shame, I could have asked for more prayers for whatever the outcome. Why feel shame in my circumstances?


I feel shame in the timeline of all the hospital circumstances. It starts with guilt. "I did this, I didn't do this, had I know I would have done this...." and then that all turns into, "I am this. I am that. I am a failure. I am unworthy." See where I'm going with that? I feel shame in the fact that I was alone in the room holding the boys. I feel shame in that I feel like I haven't done enough for other's to know and actually feel the boys are {real}. For example, I feel shame in sharing their picture, and then I feel shame in not sharing their picture. I feel like I have so many points to prove, and then it becomes a battle deep inside. I've had people ask me if I was going to share my story.  I've had people ask me why I'm writing. I've had people ask me if I should hold back some. I've had people tell me that I probably should share their photo, etc. etc.  See where I'm going with this? It's all about others. It's about pretending, lying, and wearing these mask.

People pleasing.


People pleasing is where I feel the need to look at a certain situation and think of how certain people will react to the circumstance and react in a way that will make them happy, when in fact, it's not even about them, and in most cases, they aren't even making it all about them. I am.  I need to be looking at myself and look up. I need to see him looking at me and see myself through his eyes.

Child, you are worthy. You are loved. You did the best that you knew to do during the time. You have nothing to feel shame in.


Now grief. I wrote about this last time, and I keep coming back in full circle. I build myself up and say, "Okay, I'm ready to take these layers off, hurt, and go through it," but then I chicken out. I put my 50lb rucksack back on, hold back the tears, and keep hiking.


Jenna, Jenna, Jenna. Insert, "Hi, I'm Jenna," here, because that's totally Jenna.


Our Pastor talked on Easter about being in the dark and feeling like you need to fix things first to be able to be in the light, when in fact, the light can be found in the dark, because he's there. He's in the dark with me. Every single moment of it. And guess what, I DO NOT HAVE TO PLEASE HIM. Wow. Just saying that feels 50lbs lighter.


I've been having a hard time writing lately. I have multiple blogs written and they are left unfinished. I think it all comes down to this single fact. I'm tired of people pleasing, and I'm tired of putting on a mask.


Hi, I'm Jenna.


Before losing our boys, I was just as broken and messed up as I am today. Surprise!!!


But it has taken losing the boys to realize that and to get help.


Now the question remains if you've put on this impossible job, how will you quit?


This question has been left unanswered, and I know I'm picking and choosing ways to quit, but I just need to trust that this was all in God's plan and that he already has a way for me to quit.


I know exactly where my hurts and my hang up's are, and I know where there are impossible situations that I need to just let go of and let them rest, but I am going to just take it day by day.


There's no rush to fixing me because I don't have to be fixed to have Jesus. He's already with me, looking at me, feeling it with me, loving me. So I'm going to slow it down. I'm going to stop trying to sign up for every single "help me" class there is, and I'm just going to rest a little. I'm going to hold his hand, let go of hands that have left me feeling empty, and just sit and be still.


Today I pray that you take this journey with me. If there's a hurt or a hang up in your life that you need healing in, strip your layers, strip your masks, and be still. Know that even though we must walk the line to get to the other side, it's okay to stop and pause in the middle. There's no rush in the healing, and there's no rush in the fixing. He loves you just the way you are and he's willing to stop when you are and he's willing to move forward when you are.


If you find yourself in the mix of people pleasing or any behavior that has been leaving you feeling tired, unworthy, lacking, etc, take a moment to be still, rest, take a deep breath, and pray.


Today I pray that you can find peace in the fact that he has created you just the way you are, and there's no shame in that. He drew up a map of your life, and he knows every corner you'll take and every slope you'll try to climb. He has grace for you each time you fall or get lost and there's no shame in that.

Today I pray that you know that there's no shame in loss, in grief, in death, in broken relationships, in hurts, in hang up's, in addictions, etc. Change your sentence, I dare you.


"I am unworthy," and He says, "You are my child, worthy of my creation in my image."


"I am a failure," and He says, "I've taken your curse so that you can be redeemed. I've died for you so that you can live again. The cross has already won the war."


"I am not loved," and He says, "Jenna...." The fact that he knows our names is example enough that we are in fact [loved].


I am praying for you today.




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