My children laughed They played and giggled Took turns Hugged and Kissed each other’s scraped knees And I Held my bated breath Waiting For the first fist to fall The … Continue reading Horrors Pass
Days bleed one into the next and the next and the next My laughter mingles with the salt of my tears as tiredness walks hand-in-hand with the joys of being all … Continue reading A Little Bit More
In the quiet of the night That billowy deep silence Where the creaks creaking And the distant horns beeping Are shadows of sounds That deepen The lulling Quiet And in … Continue reading In the Quiet
I had to share this post from one of my favorite bloggers, Behind the White Coat, because it so perfectly mirrored my own thoughts as I watched my daughter plunge ahead of me on the sidewalk yesterday. She doesn’t want to hold my hand any more, but wants to forge her own way through the world, armed with her knowledge to stop at driveways and look for cars, and to always, always stop at the street and wait for me or her daddy to hold hands.
I want to hold her hand forever. I want to feel her little hand, so warm and soft in my own, with the knowledge that if her hand is in mine, I can keep her safe.
But little girls get bigger, and little girls want to learn how to stand on their own two feet, and to see their moms looking back at them with a smile, not a constant look of terror.
Because when she runs ahead, with a carefree bounce in step, I am constantly imagining a car coming from nowhere, jumping the curb and taking her from me. I’m imagine her bobbing hair, her head turning and those innocent happy eyes looking into mine as she’s ripped from my world. I imagine her broken, dying, in my arms, and all the terrible things that could happen in that moment when’s she just out of my reach, and I’m plunged into a dark place. I want to run to her, pick her up, caution her that the world is a scary place, and she must always be careful of all the terrible things that could happen in that moment when she turns her head to beam at her mommy. But then I think, if she’s obeying the rules, if she’s close to me, why should I put my own fear of all the things that COULD happen into her?
I see her joy and it lifts my spirits, but my fear of letting go of that little precious hand and letting her discover the world on her own, with her own two hands, not just one – that terrifies me.
I let go, I smile and laugh and enjoy her exploration of the world around her, point at the things we’re learning at together, but each time I feel like I’m holding my breath, waiting for the moment when she comes back to me. When her hand is in mine, or I’m carrying her, her head resting on my shoulder.
Okay, so I put this out there in my post on being a med student’s wife, but something that I didn’t mention about the hardship of being a med student’s … Continue reading On Showing Up
This post has been brewing in the back of my head since before my daughter was born. Sometimes people walk into your life and create what at first seems like a subtle ripple in the waters of your life, and only when you look back do you see that what started as a ripple, actually became a tidal wave. A tidal wave of acceptance, warmth, humor, and love; a wave that picked you off your feet along the way and swept all those tangled weeds of self-doubt away with the tides and leaves you feeling whole.
When we were expecting our daughter, my husband and I began what became a lengthy discussion as to who we wanted to be our daughter’s godparents. The role of a godparent was extremely important to me, because I am who I am in no small part thanks to the role of my godmother and godfather. My godfather passed away when I was very young, but to this day I remember his humor, patience, and kindness. My godmother was a constant presence in my childhood. She was patient, kind, and unafraid of questioning my sheer determination on every front, even in my rebellious teens. Her compassionately-spoken word, even if it was correcting an erroneous belief or behavior, somehow checked me and made me think about the person I wanted to be, and how my words and actions were interpreted. We didn’t always agree, but she made me think about my beliefs, and made sure that my passions were well-founded. Was she perfect? No, but she was still our saint. She was my mother’s closest friend, and a soul-sister if she ever had one.
So, when choosing our the godparents for our daughter, my standards were pretty high, but we were both very realistic and treated this matter very carefully. In many respects, we are lucky. We have a wonderful group of intelligent, loving, caring friends, but this only made the choice more difficult. In the end, our choice was perfect. We chose two people who embody the following statement to the fullest:
even when you don’t see it yourself.” -Edmund Lee
One has been like a brother to me for nearly 16 years, and the other has been like a sister since I first started training at martial arts. And something I noticed about these two folks in particular – by being around them, I was becoming a better person.
These two have been more than a safety net – they have been an anchor. When you feel like you might get lost at sea, it is so helpful to have those friends who will tell you the truth, and will also give you the mirror so you can see for yourself that your world isn’t as dark as it seemed.
So, remember, when you’re looking at the people you hold close, the people you spend the most time with, ask yourself – do they see the greatness within you? Are you able to be unapologetically YOU around them? If not, find those people who are the dreamers and the doers around you – they’re the ones who make you feel good about yourself because they are simply good to the core.
Those people are the people you want in your life. More than that, they’re the people you want in your children’s lives.
So my husband and I just celebrated our tenth anniversary. It was the most fun we’ve had in quite some time. We ate, we drank, we walked by the beach and marveled at how far we’ve come.
All in all, the last ten years have been nothing short of amazing. My love for my husband has grown over the years – I have seen him emerge from his teenage years into a responsible, caring, silly man. And now, seeing him with our daughter and pursuing his dream to be a doctor? Well, that love has become even more intense. He can still make me laugh, even as he drives me insane.
On a completely different note, my own life seems to have gotten a bit off track.
I am not really a medievalist anymore. I like to say I am, but I don’t live, breathe, and eat the medieval world and literature any more. I am not reciting Old English to begrudging college students like I once imagined I would be doing at this stage in my life. My dreams of being a writer are, well, active, sure, but I am not being paid to write (not yet, at least).
What happened? Where did that spark, the love of all things old and medieval go? Nowhere. It’s still here. It all comes down to money – I don’t have it!
Then, these last few weeks, well, I’ve just been feeling tired. Not a type of tired that sleeping will cure. It’s been a bone-tired, stretched-too-thin exhaustion, that has made me feel close to breaking. Is it pushing myself to read and write, being a mom, and working full time, and just feeling like I’m not quite doing anything justice? Is it fear of what may come, what might not come, and the failure that now is so much closer?
Perhaps. Or, maybe it’s that I feel like I’m spending a lot of time on things that don’t really matter. I’m watching my daughter grow up and I feel like I’m missing it. I get back from work and I am too wiped out to write, recently, or do much of anything.
Maybe it’s just that I truly needed this vacation. Vacations are good for the soul after all, and this one certainly has been. It’s let me get back in touch with me, not the tired, frazzled, cranky person I felt I’ve become become. I feel like I need to let myself become more grounded and centered again. I need to find that focus on the positive in life, rather than how short I am falling from where I want to be. Or stressed by those things outside of my control.
All in all, I’m feeling a lot more at peace, thanks to a vacation and visiting family. I have a lot of self-discovery and struggling to do, but that’s okay. I’ll figure it out. Or I won’t. And that’ll be okay, too.