A Slave to the Opinions of Others

By Molly Bice-Jackson - 2:28 PM

I got an interesting comment on A Good Grief yesterday, which shook me up a bit. It wasn't bad. Not at all. And I understood where she was coming from, I just wish I could respond to her. 

It got me thinking of how often we are a slave to the opinions of others--have I been true to myself lately? On my blog and in my life? I think I have. I've enjoyed having some posts that aren't ridden with grief.. I enjoy celebrating the small victories in my life.  I sometimes feel this odd tinge of guilt (?) that things seem to be going better for me lately. I worry that people who are fresh in their grief will discount my experience because they don't see me as one of them. 

It's funny, I didn't want to be a part of this club. This bereaved mother club. And now I'm worried that I'm not seen as a part of it. It doesn't keep me awake at night, I just analyze where I am in my journey and how I am connecting with others in my boat. What I hope, is that I'm seen as a seasoned member of this club who can provide encouragement and advice and perspective. I don't know much, but I know  how to love people. I want to be good at doing that. 

And because I love you, and want you to help me spread the word about my concert, and because I am putting my money where my mouth is by practicing being free from others' opinions, I am sharing the video link of me singing at last year's concert. 

WARNING: There is one note that I fall short on. Damn it! (I should have taken Angela's advice and not tried to belt it due to the emotional state I would be in).  Not to mention this song just doesn't sit in a good spot in my voice. It's not my best. 

While I sang, the slide show of all my angel friends was being played on two large screens on either side of me. Some whom we've helped with headstones, others who were simply being remembered. I had no idea that I received a standing ovation when it was over. I couldn't see beyond the blinding lights. But I did know that I felt the exact elation and utter love inside that I felt the moment Peter was born. 

Please let me have the honor of meeting you at this year's concert. 

HERE IS THE LINK.

And please someone leave a nice comment. Oh, wait. There I go again.




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35 Loving Lines

  1. You are wonderful, Molly. I love you.

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  2. I am so trying to come this year. I hope I can!!! I think it would be so great to meet other families who have lost children and be able to help them in some way! Here's hopin. . . . .

    Jan Taylor

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  3. Molly, I know what you mean. I get it. I used to have my blog posted on the sidebar of the Angel blog by Stephanie Waite, but there I was, 30+ years from losing our baby girl, and I never posted about it, just about my life now. I too worried that it was coming across "too happy". I asked Stephanie to remove it (my blog link). Life goes on, that is for sure. I still check out the angel blog, and always scroll down to the very bottom of the baby pictures, and there she is....my baby. She would have been 34 tomorrow, my oldest child. My little girl. I may not think about her as much, here I am a grandma who is 50+, but she is in my heart and I know I will have her again one day. Every day brings her a little closer :)

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  4. That was beautiful, Molly! Truly.

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  5. How on earth did you get through that so well?!? I sang last year at my grandma's funeral, she meant everything to me, and I didn't do it so gracefully. I actually have been wanting to remind you that you said you'd post it. I've been waiting to hear it and wasn't disappointed. It made me cry. I wish I lived in UT so I could go to the concert. I'd so be there! I'll be there this summer but that won't make any difference. I'll be sure to share it all over Facebook like I did last year. Hoping you have an even greater success this year!

    Kelsey

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  6. I think anyone bereaved will look at you and feel hope that one day they too will have light in their lives. You are an inspiration to so many people. Don't go changing, stay true to yourself. I love reading your blog.

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  7. I just watched that video and cried so hard I can't see the monitor. That was one of the most moving and beautiful performances I've ever seen.

    The only opinion anyone needs to have of you is HOLY CRAP MOLLY IS AWESOME. Just my two cents.

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  8. I agree with the lady above:)

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  9. Beautiful, Molly. I wish I could come to your concert. Not this year. :/ Maybe next? And I would love to help out with it some time, as well. Sing, play, whatever.

    Don't worry what people have to say when it's not supportive. That doesn't come from our Heavenly Father. And we should only allow things from Him to affect us. :)

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  10. Oh Molly, how lovely! I would love to meet you~ maybe one day. How can any one judge or give opinions on one's grief? I cried watching you sing and like, Megan said... You are AWESOME! Now you have four cents!!

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  11. That was absolutely beautiful Molly. And I'm a harsh critic, being classically trained myself. But it truly was, objectively speaking. And, now speaking as a devoted blog follower, I have to say that I am amazed at your ability to get up there at all and sing such a meaningful song despite your grief. You are totally my hero!
    Wish I wasn't far away in Florida, I would so be there this year.

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  12. Rose Kennedy said, "I have always believed that God never gives us a cross to bear larger than we can carry. No matter what, he wants us to be happy, not sad. Birds sing after a storm. Why shouldn't we." Your song is beautiful and so are you. It is WONDERFUL to see the happiness we have all been praying for, for you.

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  13. Your song was amazing! Well done. I wish I could come to the concert. I couldn't attend last year either. Hopefully next year, the third time will be the charm.

    I identified with what you said in your post about not quite fitting with the expectation. At times I have felt the same way. I haven't lost a child, but am the mother of a child with a disability.

    We are now 11 years into our journey down this unexpected path. My footing is now more sure than it was when we were starting out. After years of therapy and effort, our son has made great strides and is now quite high functioning. But, because of that, I sometimes feel like an imposter in the special needs world. Our life / his life is not that of a typical 11 year old, and yet I wonder at times are we "special" enough to still be part of that club.

    Sometimes we feel like we have a foot in both worlds. Anyway.... I got it! Thanks for sharing. Good luck with the concert. I would love for you to post clips after it is over for those of us who missed it.

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  14. My 7 yr old daughter and I came last year and sat in the front row. We will be there again! Your song was amazing and I look forward to this concert!

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  15. I'm headed to SLC tomorrow. I'm bummed you picked the wrong weekend for your concert. That's okay, though. You didn't know. ;o) Oh wait, this was supposed to be a good comment, right?

    From what I've observed over the bloggersphere, you're doing well. Be at peace.

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  16. I'm headed to SLC tomorrow. I'm bummed you picked the wrong weekend for your concert. That's okay, though. You didn't know. ;o) Oh wait, this was supposed to be a good comment, right?

    From what I've observed over the bloggersphere, you're doing well. Be at peace.

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  17. All I can say is--even though we don't know eachother, and I occasionaly read your blog--it meant a lot to me for you to take the time to put my baby's picture on your slide show as you sang that last year, and I live in a completely different state. I don't like to watch it so much because I still cry everytime I see it.

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  18. Wow-that was beautiful. I have to admit, I was "ugly crying" while watching that. I so admire your strength, and I needed that reminder today that there IS hope, even in the lowest of times. Thanks for sharing.

    Oh, and I'm in Pennsylvania, but if I was anywhere near your part of the country, I would drive to be there for the concert- maybe another year...Salt Lake City has always been on my bucket list anyways! :)

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  19. Miss Molly, Having known you long before your tragic loss, then as you went through it and now long after it I can say it has honestly been amazing and humbling to watch your transformation and the whole,entire, grief process unfold. You are exactly where you should be in the process.

    But I know exactly how you feel, but in respect to having an extremely early preemie. It is similar grief. Its been almost 9 years and sometimes I feel like when I am sharing my story with someone who is going through it I feel like I may not be relating to them because it is so raw for them. But I am so thankful to be where I am today and for her to be so healthy. It is a nightmare to think back to all that we went through. But it doesn't make it any less real for it to be in the past and for us to be living a good life now.

    Keep up the great work you are doing. You and Vic are truly an inspiration to remind all of us how we should be living Christlike lives.

    P.S. I think it is awesome that you are having your concert on my Birthday. It would be a great way to celebrate if I wasn't in ATL. :)

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  20. Your blog has helped in ways I will never be able to explain. I have found a way to channel my grief through my personal trials. I wish I could meet you!! Arkansas is just too darn far away. But if you're ever in my neck of the woods, I would love to take you to lunch!! You are incredible!

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  21. The emotion of what you have been through really came through as you sang the song. You are brave, beautiful and amazing Molly! I am sure Lucy is so proud of you:)

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  22. Psalm 30:11 "You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy."

    Isn't any amount of joy in this life a miracle of God, especially in the midst of deep suffering, grief and loss? Molly when you allow yourself to feel joy, and share your experience with others, you are revealing God's miracle in your life and honoring Him by doing it!

    Love you, your family, your blog and praying for an abundantly blessed concert that reveals God's love to all! - Megan Fera

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  23. That was stunningly beautiful. Thank you for sharing!

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  24. You crack me up. I loved listening to your song - beautiful words and true too. We all want "Days of Plenty." When I first became a widow 3 years ago, I was told "you have to keep going." The problem is ---I didn't know where to go. Now, 3 years later, I can smile, laugh, hug my little grandson, remember good memories and I really am moving forward. Just because it has been a few years since your daughter passed away, doesn't mean you don't have some of those same hard times - it doesn't mean everything is perfect - it doesn't mean those who loved your daughter or you and your husband will forget her or forget what you have been through. Not at all. I feel that you have made so many of us look to you for someone who is doing the right things after such a loss. It is hard to explain how someone's words or their actions can bring change. Just reading your story has changed me - you make me want to give back, to do better, to want to become someone new. I think that is the beautiful thing the Gospel of Jesus Christ can do for us. We aren't perfect but we want to be. The Savior knows us and He knows what will help us grow and become more like him. You are a shining example of someone who has been through the hardest trial a parent can endure, yet is doing their very best to find joy and peace in life. I don't know you at all but I find myself reading your blog with wonder and amazement at your strength, wisdom, giving attitude, and your willingness to share a little slice of your life with perfect strangers. I admire and respect you for giving back and helping others and in the process, helping yourself to heal. Keep smiling, keep laughing, and don't ever think you have to bend to the the opinions of others. Just live your life the best way you know how and in doing so I think you will always come out the winner. Your daughter must be so proud of her parents. She is watching proudly as her little brother grows up and will do the same for her little sister. Have a wonderful day.

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  25. This morning your song brought me to tears at my cubicle. What an amazing voice you have and what an amazing person you are. Every morning I look forward to reading your blog, as I know it will brighten my day. You are such an inspiration and I am so glad you choose to share your story of life with people who don't even know you. Thank you for being you.

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  26. You should never feel sorry for trying to be a happy and positive person. Any good person would know that it doesn't mean you love or miss you Lucy any less. I think it just shows others in fresh grief that there is a light at the end of the dark tunnel.
    I really hope I can make it to the benefit concert.

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  27. That video brought me to tears. You have a beautiful voice! I am hoping to come to the concert. I think it sounds wonderful. :)

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  28. What a powerful song. You are amazing.

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  29. Molly,
    I have been a silent stalker to your blog and "a good grief" site for quite a long time now being a fellow angel mom (our son would turn 12 in May.. he died at 20 days old).. I often bring up our experiences and lessons we've learned on our journey through out the years.. the most common comment is "how can you talk about that with a smile".. at first the comment stung (knowing absolutely the person saying it didn't mean for that AT ALL!)like maybe something is wrong with me, maybe i'm not doing this grieving thing right?! but I have come to decide I'm doing what I know how to do, I have learned things and continue to learn things.. allot I share with people when its relevant and apporporiate somethings are just too special/sacred to share for ME I feel like sharing experiences and relaying lessons learned is a way of honoring our experience and giving back for all we have been given and YES even the lessons we learned in that tragic sad situation we consider blessings.. thats not to say I don't have teary moments (his birthday fell on mothers day last year.. ya HARD!) but I can have long stretches of days that I am happy and content and laugh and that just means through Heavenly Father's grace I am living and our son I am absolutely certain needs for me to do that because he's waiting for a whole healthy mommy to reunite with him.. and his mommy is eagerly waiting for that too!!! angel mommy hugs to you,
    thanks for all you do I so wish I lived closer so I could attend your awesome event!!!

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  30. Your song touched my heart. I promise to attend this year. I need to. I love you, Molly. I know you don't know me from Amy, but I love you as Molly Jackson, Lucy's Mom. Thank you for who you are.

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  31. I am so glad that you finally shared it!! It was splendid. Thanks!

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  32. You have an incredible talent. I got goosebumps and tears. Very well done, Molly!

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