Week Forty-one: Kathy Benson



List the five people you’d like to meet and why

There are so many people living, deceased and even fictitious who I wish I could meet. Here are five, including a few that I think I will actually get to meet in person someday:

Pope Francis

I am inspired by the Jesuit priest who was elected last month to lead the Catholic Church. Having followed his first few weeks in the papacy I continue to be impressed with his humble approach to servant leadership and social justice. I would love the chance to sit and talk with him about his faith and vision for our church.

Some of My Cousins

My mom is an only child and thus I do not have any first cousins on her side of our family. I have grown up knowing and feeling close to some of my mom’s cousins and their children, for which I am grateful. My dad is one of five children and I am one of twenty-two grandchildren on his side of our family. For many reasons he and his siblings have not all remained close over the years. They also chose to settle across the United States, so we never lived near to any of my paternal aunts, uncles and cousins. Over the years I have had the opportunity to meet some of my twenty-one cousins, but unfortunately I have not yet met all of them.

In December 2011, one of my cousins, whom I never got to meet, died. Though I didn’t know her, I was left with a sense of sadness and missed potential which magnified my wanting to get know and hopefully someday spend time in person with more of my paternal cousins. I started a private Facebook group for my cousins who were interested in connecting and trying to keep in touch more. I also exchanged private messages and emails with a few and feel very blessed to have a closer relationship than ever before with many of my cousins, in part thanks to being able to communicate and see photos of our families via Facebook. That said, I would still love to meet more of my cousins someday and see those again whom I have not been together with in awhile. I intend to make that happen in the not too distant future, either as part of a family reunion or by going to visit them on my own.

Derrick Hough

I was watching Dancing with the Stars this week and day dreaming, as I often do, about how much I would love to have the opportunity to meet and dance with one of the professional ballroom dancers on the show. In a parallel life if I were a “B List” celebrity I would jump at the chance to be on the show and if I could choose my partner, I would likely go with Derrick. I am inspired by the way he dances and his unique choreography.

I grew up dancing; from the time I was a preschooler through my teenage years, when I was in my high school’s dance company and choreographed for our annual show every spring. For much of my youth I wanted to be a professional dancer, but eventually moved on to a more practical vocation and career path. These days I get to live out some of my childhood dancing fantasies when I teach my weekly group fitness classes. So I believe that I would be a decent partner for Derrick to work with, as I know how I pick up choreography quickly and love to perform.

Carolyn Savage

Six years ago I connected with a group of women who were all doing In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) cycles for the first time on an IVF Connections (IVFC) discussion board. Among those in my original “cycle buddy” group, was a very nice woman named Carolyn. We both eventually were able to conceive and sustain pregnancies through IVF and lost touch for a while. As it turned out our paths would cross again in the years to come, in part because we both experienced rare and unique situations with one of our pregnancies.

My first frozen embryo transfer (FET) cycle sadly led to the birth and death of our second child, our first daughter, Molly in April 2008. Carolyn also got pregnant via a FET in 2009 and soon after she found out she was expecting, also discovered that her doctor had transferred another woman’s embryo into her uterus. Carolyn later shared with me that following my family’s journey with our baby girl Molly in 2008 helped her to cope and make peace with preparing to say goodbye to the baby boy that she carried to term and then gave back to his biological parents after he was born in September 2009.

I have had the great pleasure of meeting many of my favorite bloggers and other women that I consider friends who I met online. However, I have yet to meet Carolyn and look forward to having that chance someday in the not too distant future. 

Kevin Briggs

A few years ago I was listening to the Bob Edwards Show on NPR when I heard a story about a man who works as a highway patrolman in Marin County, CA. The area he covers includes the Golden Gate Bridge. As the story goes, Kevin has stopped over 200 people from jumping off of the bridge in effort to take their own lives. He does so by asking them two questions, “How are you feeling?” and “What are your plans for tomorrow?” A folk singer named Meg Hutchinson was interviewed on the Bob Edwards Show that day, as she wrote a beautiful song called “Gatekeepers,” inspired by Kevin’s ministry, about how “maybe every day in ordinary ways, we hold each other one, we keep each other here.”

I was so moved  to learn about all of this and think it would be awesome to meet Kevin someday. I would like to ask him why he started approaching people who appeared to be preparing to take their own lives and how he came up with the questions he decided to ask them. Kevin’s words and Meg’s song inspired me to start a series on my blog called Gatekeeping, which I haven’t hosted in awhile and intend to get back to doing sometime soon.

Who would you like to meet?


Kathy Benson is a bereaved and blessed mom, writer and group fitness instructor trying to live mindfully and find joy in the journey after dealing with secondary infertility and loss for five years. She lives in Chicago, Illinois with her husband and two living children.

Kathy blogs at Bereaved and Blessed. You can also follow Kathy on Twitter @BereavedBlessed and her Facebook page


3 thoughts on “Week Forty-one: Kathy Benson

  1. Pingback: Spring Shed: Week Four

  2. Pingback: Gatekeeping (10th Edition)

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