By: Justine Froelker
I get one at least once a week.
A message that reads something like:
“I know I have a story that can help people, but… How did you do it? You’re so brave.”
I am not braver than you.
My story isn’t easier or harder than yours.
I am not more talented at speaking or writing than you.
I knew if I did not speak my truth, tell my story, I may never crawl out of the deep dark hole of grief.
Seven years ago, we ended our infertility journey with three losses and no children. As a Licensed Professional Counselor I already knew the power of telling our story to heal, as a mother without children I had to believe I wasn’t alone because the fear of that darkness was going to kill me.
So I spoke.
I broke my silence.
A broken silence to find a tribe. A broken silence to feel not so alone. A broken silence because I refused to believe staying quiet would help me heal. A broken silence because by God, I was going to use this for something good.
It was scary to speak, still is honestly.
Because when we speak our truth, we choose the courage of vulnerability, and vulnerability is always scary.
Most of us weren’t taught how to feel our feelings let alone talk about them, and then when we do, we have no guarantee of what we will get. Hello, risk and uncertainty.
Silence though is scarier.
When we don’t tell our story, it only lives in the dark where it suffocates our light.
Speaking our truth means we honor our children and ourselves, we glorify God, and we begin the walk into our healing journey and writing our own ending.
Plus, it is the only chance we have of receiving the compassion and empathy we need from this world.
It may not be writing a book or sharing so transparently on social media like me right now, or ever.
Speaking your truth may be letting a couple of people in.
And, I mean really in.
Drop the armor of shame, fear, and perfectionism and let your people in. They want to see you. They must see you to love you fully. And you are worthy of being seen and loved.
Choose your healing in speaking your truth.
Light the way out of darkness for others in speaking your truth.
Please, speak your truth.
About Justine Brooks Froelker
Hi! My name is Justine Brooks Froelker. In February 2011, my husband and I began our journey in the world of IVF. Gestational surrogacy was the safest way for us to have our children since I had two back surgeries in high school (including a year of my life spent in a body cast). IVF and 3 babies never to be born later, Ever Upward was conceived. After much mourning, confusion, anger and sadness, I got back up and started doing the work. The work to redefine; my life, myself, everything.
Justine currently lives in Saint Louis with her husband, Chad, and their three dogs. She enjoys her childfull life by spending time with friends and family, practicing creative self-care, laughing (many times at herself) and building butterfly gardens on her acre of land, which has made her an accidental butterfly farmer.
Learn more about Justine at www.justinefroelker.com.