This is it – the last day of October. It’s time to wrap up this series of 31 Days of Hope. Here’s my recap on the past 31 days.
I started off talking about why hope and expectations that were just off and wrong. Then I shared a lesson in hope from my 2 year old that sticks with me every day. I talked about noticing hope around me more than ever before and celebrated our sweet baby Gaby 5 months out from his birth. We had fun moments and really sad moments during this month.
I shared wise words from a friend and wrote these words that I would need to remember just a few days later:
Because maybe hope isn’t about not having any big waves knock you down, but instead, is about surrendering to the big waves, trusting that God will use it for His glory. Trusting that He has us in his hands. Having faith that what we hope for will one day come to be. And sitting securely in His embrace while the water washes over us.
I had surgery on the 10th – a cholecystectomy. I was full of hope that it would improve my health. And so far so good! I’m able to eat again for the first time in a long time. Then a few days later I talked about how it can be hard to see hope and feel hopeful sometimes. How it takes an act of stillness on our part to look beyond what is right in front of us. Then the next morning I got a call that my grandmother had had an aneurysm – a massive stroke – and that she was going to die. Talk about not feeling very hopeful. I was eating my own words as we struggled with the shock of it and the grief of losing our beloved Granny. And after that all of the planned posts I had for the month kind of fell apart and I started just winging it. I’m sure you could tell. It also meant that 2 days I posted late on the next day because I.just.couldn’t.do.it.all.
Then on the 15th I was blown away by all of you and filled up with hope! I was blessed beyond measure with candles being lit to remember our baby. Man I love you all! If you missed that check out this post and this post where I talk about why and then this post where I share many of the pictures of candles lit that night. Awesome awesome stuff.
I was pretty much ready to wrap the month up after that, but we still had the back half of the month to go. This is where my posts were struggling a bit. But a few highs include talking about being a student of hope [and sharing this precious picture].
Having extended family visit Gabriel’s grave with us. Such a touching and special thing for this mama who doesn’t get to pass a baby around for them to meet and cuddle.
And a hopeful tribute to my beautiful Granny, a woman who inspired me and many others so much.
One of the cool things from this month is that I’ve seen hope playing out right in front of me. Losing Granny was shocking and devastating. But watching my Grandfather and my family in the past two and a half weeks has been pretty special. More and more he talks about how wonderful it is that she isn’t going to have to suffer. And while it’s hard to lose her, everyone knows it was gracious that God allowed her to die like that. In a place she loves, surrounded by those she loves, and without suffering. How could you say that if you didn’t have hope?
My heart has been so impacted this month. I’m thankful for this time to focus on a topic. Thankful for the Nester’s challenge. It has stretched me and taught me a few things for sure. I walk away from October remembering that hope is essential. Always. I have also learned that I am very much a student — even when I think I have been run through the mill on a topic, there is always more to learn.
Hope is a gift.
Thanks for reading and walking through this month with me. So thankful for your encouragement and love as I continue to learn more about myself. Now, on to November!