I believe everyone has a story and I’m passionate about the power of spreading hope and purpose through real stories…that’s one of the reasons I started Real Imprints, but for some reason I had never thought to share my own story (I was having too much fun hearing, reading, and sharing others), but a few months back, I got an email from an Imprinter that said, “I’m curious [what] your story is…you must have one to have [been] led to creating this site [Real Imprints].” It made me think. What is my story and what part would I share?
I’m a believer that when we allow God to write our story, it turns out so much better than when we try to write our own. My story has taken turns that I would have never fathomed, but now I can see how God was preparing me.
Ever since I was little, I had an overwhelming concern about others. My mom said that one time there was a man in the store that had a broken leg and I kept asking him over and over again, “What happened to ‘ores’ leg?” I thought about him all day long and kept asking my mom about him for days. His hurt consumed me.
Some things never change I guess.
I have a “condition” and sometimes I feel like it’s a gift from God, and sometimes I feel like it’s a curse. I’m not sure what to call it, but when others hurt, I hurt. When others cry, I cry. When others are happy, I am happy.
I’d have to say, it’s definitely more along the curse lines when I’m sitting in the funeral of a complete stranger uncontrollably bawling my eyes out as I think about how the family must be feeling, or watching a random little rookie hit his first ball and my eyes start watering with excitement for him as I see his confidence soar. I couldn’t tell you how many times my kids have given me the “you’re not crying again are you” look accompanied with disbelief, “Mooom, are you crying?”
I’m not going to lie, these moments are embarrassing and I so wish I could be happy and sad for people without my tear ducts feeling like they needed to be a part of it.
Having disclosed all of that, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that it’s been more of a blessing than a curse. As much as I could do without the embarrassing and random “why are YOU the one crying” moments, I wouldn’t give up the other moments I’ve experienced, the unbreakable friendships I’ve made, and the life changing lessons I’ve learned from others because of it.
I have been so incredibly blessed to hear others’ stories. I have had family, friends, acquaintances, and complete strangers allow me into their safe kept and personal experiences, and it has changed me for the better. They have allowed me to walk down paths with them that have changed my perspective. It goes like this…I go into it trying to help them, but in the end they end up helping me more. They help me see God’s perfect love for everyone, they give me courage to do hard things, they help me see my blessings, and they help me see there is never room for judgment. Over and over again, I have been inspired by others’ courage, strength, and hope.
There was a time that I literally felt like I had a sign around my neck saying, “Tell me your story.” My family would tease me because I had complete strangers open up to me, but it’s because of this, that I have such a love and passion for people and their purpose. Hearing others’ stories has changed my life and I found myself wanting others to feel that too and that’s when Real Imprints was born.
The desire turned to an undeniable yearning and a heavenly push. It became so strong that I couldn’t put it off. We had just moved to a new city, my husband had just started a new and intense job where he was working long hours and learning cardio-thoracic surgery on the job, our 4 girls were all young and we had an adorable, but high-maintenance baby who was seeking for my attention 24/7. The timing was not the best, but I had to say “yes”.
The ideas started flooding my mind, day and night. I couldn’t sleep (which is not like me). I was up most the night and up early in the morning, yet I had more energy than ever before. All of the sudden I didn’t need the 8-9 hours I once needed. I felt like I was spending all of my child-free time working on the website, yet everything was getting done around the house that needed to be done. It really was a miracle. I have zero doubt Heavenly Father was prompting me and helping me every step of the way. It was incredible.
I know that God has a purpose for Real Imprints. I know that he wants an avenue for others to share their gifts, talents, trials, triumphs, and everything in between to bring hope to His children. He wants a safe place where we can all unite and talk about and find Hope in Him. I believe with a passion that God has a unique purpose for everyone and as we build a community of real life situations, it will help all of us see hope and purpose in our own journey.
It’s incredible to see the people that have joined the Real Imprints team and how we each have something different to offer. It’s something that only God could orchestrate.
The thing I look forward to most in the recent developments of my story is serving others and spreading hope with my my husband, kids, and friends. This new endeavor hasn’t always been easy, but it’s been totally worth it.
No matter what comes my way, I will always trust God to write my story and direct my path.
I now have a little two year old asking, “What happened to his leg.” For weeks after seeing a veteran with a prosthetic leg, she still talked about it. Her little heart is being prepared for something great that the Lord has in store for her. With 4 little compassionate hearts, and one giant one (my hubby’s), I thank Heavenly Father every day for allowing us to be part of Real Imprints and for the adventures and unforgettable experiences that lie ahead.
Story written by: Lindsey
This story appeared first on Real Imprints.