Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On Patience...

I am impatient.

Well, maybe that is an overstatement.  In general, I'm a pretty chilled out gal.  Or at least....I used to be.  I used to be. 

I remember, 8 years ago, holding a little baby boy in my arms, and nursing for endless hours as bewildered friends openly commented that they could never sit so still for so long.  I was...in a word...patient. 

I loved the baby pace.  The pace of tandem nursing tranquility.  The pace....before. 

Before trauma. 

Before loss.

We were always "poor".  That wasn't a big deal.  Give me an empty bank account any day over personal loss.  I have an empty bank account today for that matter!  It rocks.  Having nothing, you can only go upward from there.  That's how I see it anyway.  When you have nothing...you can't lose anything.  Well...I have zero dollars. 

Actually...I have exactly 6 dollars and 89 cents.  hah!  Not completely broke.  Almost...but not quite. 

My due date is today.  August 30th.  The day I impatiently awaited with fearful breath.  The day I worried would only be marked by more tears.  And yet...it's here....and my buttercup girl...my rainbow baby...my star child....she's moving about in her limited cocoon of love....she's moving. 

She's moving even as I type.

That's wealth to me.


But....as far as feeling patient???  No sir.  I want her.  NOW. 

Not later.

Not after.



I want my cake and I want to eat it too!  I have never felt so impatient in all of my life. 

Impatient to know....that she is alright.  To know she can see me.  To know she can hear me.  To know she has her fingers and toes in tact.  To know she is healthy.  To know she will live....

Patience.  I saw it on my eight year old sons face at the water park on Sunday.  It was the last day of the swimming season, even though it has only just become summer in Montana.  The last day of the soothing waters and waterfalls of this playful park with slides and bubbles and joy.  My husband was laughingly taking each boy in a double tube in turn down one of the bigger slides.  I floated in all my bikinied glory (for I enjoy a bikini only while pregnant....and the sun felt soooo nice on my golden belly...) around the lazy river...over and over and over in pregnant bliss.  I'd come around the corner to spy one of my sons waiting his turn....and when I saw my eight year old waiting, I was amazed.  He sat there, a little golden skinned buddah.  Full lotus position, with arms carefully poised in a chosen chakra stance.  I could see his rosebud lips...still with all baby teeth in tact...carefully parted as he whispered "ooooooooommmmmmmmmmmmm" to himself. 

This was how he waited his turn.  In patience.  In mindfulness.  In peace.

It is his way.  I taught all of my sons the art of yoga and suggested meditation to them all at one point or another.  But my eight year old....he actually practices it.  Every day, at some point, he can be found in a quiet location...meditating.  It's what he does for inner peace.  It's what he's been doing since his eldest brothers head injury at age five.  Completely un-coached.  He found his peace. 

And he uses it.

We can learn a lot from our children.  They take what they see around them, and then, they implement it in ways we can only imagine. 

Today, as I attempt to find patience in my very unpatient state, I will be taking a page from the book of a small boy we call "Bear"....I will find a quiet place....and I will remember who I used to be.  The lotus mother...who could sit...with a smile....

and breathe. 

and breathe....

Monday, August 15, 2011

It has made all the difference...

The first poem I learned by heart, as far as I can remember, was Robert Frost's "Walking by Woods on a Snowy Evening...".  I learned it, and loved it with all my heart. 

As I walk through this life full of FULLNESS, the words are etched in my brain.  "And I...I took the road less traveled by, and that has made all the difference..."

These words speak to me like no others.  "I took the road less traveled by..." 

It's been an interesting road, with plenty of unknowns up ahead. 

On this road, I've discovered that I am walking toward wholeness.  Healing.  And, if I may be so bold...perhaps even wisdom.

My mother-in-law told my husband the other day "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all".  This was in response to him expressing hurt at some things she has done and said.  Of course...it was a phrase only meant for him...and not for her. He and I have been working hard at the work of relationship...of healthy relationship.  It's been very successful within our own home, and with friends and family who are interested in healthy relationships...but not so much with those who wish to remain stuck...stagnant...sticky...and, unfortunately, hurtful.  My aunt told me a few weeks back "When given the opportunity to choose between being right and harmony, choose harmony."  Of course, this was only directed at me for expressing that I felt it was dysfunctional to remain in co-dependent abusive relationships. My other aunt wrote me that she felt "between the judgements of right and wrong, there is a field, I will meet you there."  And yet....I felt distinctly that somehow, the only way to that field was the path less chosen...the path of saying..."Enough." 

Is there a right?  A wrong?  I suppose one could say there isn't.  From where I stand there are many occurrences that feel that they shouldn't have been, but they are anyway.  Things you can not change.  Things you would not choose.  Like losing someone you love deeply.  For no reason.  Perhaps these are the things that are not right...or wrong.  They just are.  No matter how devastating.  Or beautiful.  We can't change them either way.

But, there are other things we have to be discerning about if happiness is to be found.  We can choose to end relationships that refuse to grow.  We can avoid those who would abuse us as they saw fit.  We can opt for communication and the people who understand how to partake in it.  We can select friends and family who desire healthy, loving, peaceful relationships that nurture and sustain hope.  We can move forward...and away if needed.  We can choose the road less traveled by. 

We can make choices about some things, and have to just live with others.  As that reality remains, I stand firm in my understanding that changing the things I CAN change, while perhaps not a popular idea in dysfunctional circles, is what I am given to do.  In that, I may be able to cope better with the things I can not change.  The things I can never change. 

As I strive for this...change...I find myself walking the road less traveled by.  It's funny, but I feel strangely and surely led by the purple and yellow light...and a sparkle of star energy.  I feel my twins and my unborn daughter clearing the path in approval.  "yes, mommy....this IS the way....go this way mommy....you can do it.  We know you can." 

And so, I follow their guidance, knowing they are far wiser than I.  I follow the road less traveled by.  It is making all the difference. 

Friday, August 12, 2011

Werewolf Child...

He's been here for three weeks.  My eldest son.  My werewolf child.

Yeah, I know...it's not nice to label people.  Especially your kids.   But, after 21 years of interactions, I think it's pretty safe to say that he is, without doubt...somewhat of a werewolf.  It's the bipolar.  I never know who he will be.  Sensitive and needy.  Aggressive and confrontational.  Grandiose and manic.  Depressed and Sleepy.  It's all the same kid.  The same...adult.

He has been staying here.  Each week gets a little more...uh...tense.

It's the full moon tonight.

I remember, back when he was small...wondering if the moon was somehow connected to the fits of rage.  The defiance.  The...look.

His looks change.

He doesn't sprout whiskers and claws...his teeth don't show fangs...He doesn't morph into a creature of horrific proportions.  But...he looks different.  His sea blue eyes start to grey.  His sparkle fades.  His back stiffens.  His walk gets heavier.  And...his mood....is scary.

I remember my father looking like that.  I remember being afraid.

It's hard to look at the 21 year old that came from my body...and see someone I'm afraid of.

He won't take medication.

And, at 21...I can't make him.

No one can make him.

I'm 37 weeks pregnant.  Struggling to maintain some sense of peace within.  Fighting the worry that comes from pregnancy after horrific loss.  Trying to nest.  Trying to smile.

Trying to give my family the sense that everything will be just fine.

Even though I can't know such a thing.

No one can.

Ferdinand has started growling when my eldest comes into the room.  He senses that I don't feel safe right now.  He doesn't trust the tall, slender young man with the steely grey eyes.  He licks my tears away and tries to comfort me.

This isn't how I imagined preparation for my little girl would be.

If anyone wonders why it is that I no longer put up with ANY crap anymore...they need only look at my eldest son.  Maybe then they will understand.  After 21 years of being obligated to understand beyond reason, after 21 years of bending so far backward I feel as if my spine should have snapped long ago, after 21 years of crying in helpless horror as a mental illness raced through my happy home causing pain, sorrow, and the stuttering of young children....I have NOTHING left to give anyone who exhibits aggressiveness, hostility, poor communication skills, and a lack of empathy.  I have NOTHING left in my being for abusive behaviors, carelessness of spirit, or just plain...sloppiness of soul.  I've given it all to my son.  The son who, though loved deeply, has literally sucked me dry.

He reminds me of my father.  Of my mother.  Of the mental illness that drips through my family.

He is all I can handle...and even that is too much.

My other children...they've been blessed.  Spared.  They don't deal with the same thread that runs through my ancestors.  My eldest got it all.  My younger children...they know what mental illness looks like because of him.  And, they want nothing more to do with it.

But, he is my son.

22 years ago, a foolish, sad girl of 15 stopped saying "No"...because she felt there was no longer any point.  22 years ago...she was given a task that others would have crumbled under.
22 years ago...it's been 22 years.

And still.  .  .I am crying over it.

Crying when I should be breathing. Crying when I should be smiling.

We were so...relieved...that our daughter would be born into a house where he was no longer living.

And then..he came back.

It all seemed fine at first.  At first.

I am 37 weeks.  My daughter is healthy.  We both are.  Alive. We both are.

And though I am ever so anxious to know she will be born safely...to know she is HERE to stay...

I am asking her to wait.  Just wait 10 more days at least my love...wait until your brother has moved out again.  Give us all some time to heal from his presence.  Let yourself be born to parents who have had a good nights sleep. A chance to find some laughter. Some light.  A chance to make love. A chance to heal from the assault of steel grey eyes with hate behind them.

Please.  Be safe.  Be patient. Be safe.  Be mentally sound...please.

Be safe.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Peripheral Vision...

I keep seeing it. 

Little lights out of the corner of my eye. 

I wouldn't think twice about it...but..they are purple and gold. 

I saw three crows flying two days ago.  They soared and swooped over the trees and billowy grasses of the Montana field I was in, while my sheepy sheepdog romped with butterflies.  Three crows...and then, they parted ways and one of the crows flew away into the pink clouds of sunset.  The remaining two crows danced together in the remaining light. 

A yellow butterfly landed in my garden last night.  Sucking the nectar from a purple cluster of flowers.

And the lights....I see them all the time.  flickering.  I look around, and they disappear. 

"Simon?  Alexander?  Is that you?"

I remember the birds, all three of them flying together.  I wonder if our little girl...our buttercup...is with our twins.  I wonder if they are staying close by her side, until she makes it into my arms.  I like to think so. 

I like to imagine that they are with her.  That she knows them.  That they are telling her it will be alright, that she is coming to a mother who adores her children with all her heart.  I wonder if she will remember them...as I remember them. 

I see them in the corners of my eyes. 

And I welcome the yellow butterfly.  The satin backed crow.  And...the lights.  I will always welcome the lights. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

On waiting...

Thirty six weeks. 

That's what the calender says today. 

Thirty six weeks.

This is a road I've not traveled before.  The thirty six week mark of pregnancy...without confidence.

Oh sure, it flutters here and there...the sense that all will be well. 

But doubt follows closely.  Fear.  Grief.

It's the grief that gets me down.  It's the understanding that while "she" seems to be coming..."they" never will. 

It's the stark truth that while "she" may make it...."they"...did not.

It is that eye opening fact that makes me wonder if pain will ever leave this heart.

Even when rosebud lips smile in my direction.

Oh yes...I love her already.  Treasure her more deeply than one would think possible.  She is my rainbow light.  My one and only daughter.  My star child. 

She will, I'm sure, radiate her brilliance throughout my world.  And, it pains me to know that as she grows...she will see that unspoken tear in my eyes...and she will know of loss even without touching it herself, which I pray she never will. 

I am waiting.  Thirty six weeks today.  The midwife will do her non stress test, which, while she finds it comforting...I simply find it stressful to be in what seems like a completely healthy and normal pregnancy which is being treated like a time bomb.  All the tests.  All the....silence...as we wait....for the glimmer of normality.  Which...is always there. 


So I wait...

For the end.