In celebration of the first birthday of The Rare Life podcast, I share some behind-the-scenes in the creation of the show. I explain what it’s like to run the podcast while also being a stay-at-home mom still very much in the trenches of rare parenting. Per usual, I stay real and include both the amazing and not-so-amazing aspects of it all.
I also talk about the purpose of the podcast, what it means to me, and ways you can help me continue to produce powerful episodes of vulnerability and healing.
The idea crept into my mind when Kimball was one year old.
We were barely keeping our head above water with countless appointments. All of us were struggling. Hard.
I had been listening to a podcast about stillbirth and infant loss and a mom was telling her story. Though our stories and outcomes were vastly different, she spoke of the fear and grief after the doctor found birth defects that would likely (and did) take her son’s life. My heart skipped a beat as I felt a comradery with this person I had never met. In that moment, I was taken back to a similar appointment with our doctors when I was pregnant with Kimball. I knew that we had a common understanding, at least in part, of what that was like. It was simultaneously a gut-wrenching and life-giving moment. She went on with her story and the moment passed. But the feeling remained, and I ached for more of it. I wondered what it would be like to listen to moms tell stories of having a child like Kimball. What would it feel like to connect on that level and not just in a fleeting moment? As I we got ready for bed that night, I shared these thoughts and feelings with my husband Juston. Then, I voiced the thought that felt utterly ridiculous: “What if I made a podcast like that?” We both laughed and went to bed.
Fast forward 18 months. I had recently reprocessed my trauma regarding Kimball using EMDR trauma therapy and was finally feeling like myself again. That healing was so life-changing and I wanted it for all parents experiencing the emotions and daily struggle I had. My thoughts went back to that podcast I had listened to and the yearning for a podcast like it in my own corner. I knew even then the healing impact of hearing your own story in the voice of another and knowing you’re not alone. And this time that tiny spark ignited into a flame.
I got to work.
I brainstormed and took notes. I dreamed and planned. And with each scary step I took, I got closer to my goal of launching a podcast on Kimball’s second birthday. Often the scariest steps were telling people about my plans. Because what if I never followed through? What if it became one of those ambitious dreams that fell by the wayside as soon as I became discouraged, or things didn’t come as easily as I had hoped?
At first I told my husband of my plans. Then my therapist. Then my closest friend. Then Facebook.
I bought recording equipment, I was mentored by several friends in similar industries, I watched audio-editing Youtube videos.
Little by little, The Rare Life took shape and took life. Three months before release, I started recording and creating episodes. And as planned, on May 29th, we celebrated Kimball’s place in our lives—and released the first official episode.
As this month has rolled around again, I’m filled with so much gratitude and awe in what I’ve been able to create with the help of so many. I’ve been changed in a way that wouldn’t have been possible without it. And it’s been an absolute honor to be a part of so many other’s healing and processing. The messages I’ve received have made the hundreds of hours of work worth every bit of it. And I know they’re only a representation of what many more have experienced. To experience the journey with each of you this year has been incredible. I’m here for all of it.
Here’s to a life-changing and healing first year of The Rare Life and to the many life-changing and healing years to come.