Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Mother's Day Observed

In my practice I have been known to tell individuals in relationship with others that they must be clear with their expectations.  While I understand the disappointment in not receiving accolades or wooing; if we do not communicate what we need or expect, our loved one will likely fall short of our desires and wishes.  Therein lies the potential for breakdown or tension in relationship with others and I am not immune from this experience.

This year Flynn's birthday and Mother's Day have fallen similarly in the calendar as they did 12 years ago and I have been feeling down in relation to this (or at least that is what I am attributing it to).  Practicing what I suggest to others, two weeks ago I told my beloved that I would really appreciate a Love Letter for Mother's Day in lieu of any Hallmark card or store bought merchandise.  Once his jokes about me not being his mother were out of his system, he told me that he liked the idea and would see what he could do.

It may not seem romantic or sentimental to ask for a love letter but I knew that what I needed right then for my spirit and in relation to him was a reminder of our connection. The relationship that is at the basis of our transformation into parenthood and the foundation for our family.  In being honest with him I was more likely to have my needs and desires met.

When he and I began dating we bonded over our love of the written word. We both took poetic license with our thoughts and emotions and reveled in sharing it with one another.  His letter to me today left me a puddle of tears, feeling loved and knowing that in this life I have someone who sees me. His letter touched on the deeply personal and I needed it to be.  These past few weeks I have felt raw and vulnerable "searching for something" to help me feel rooted.  I wanted to tell you how much I appreciated this beautiful act and I wanted to post this passage and say Thank You for loving me.

"When I watch you struggle with your anxiety over them, their difficulties with school and with their ever growing need to make choices for themselves, I'm empowered by your passion and investment into what they will become. I may be a great "Dad" in the moment but I pale in comparison to your attention to detail. Without you by my side and at the helm of this family, I know that we would be lost....veering wildly around in search of some solid ground on which to build a foundation for a strong future. You are our anchor. It sounds unpleasant, but it is the most important requirement in a successful and truly happy family. You need to know that we all love and depend on you, and always will as our lives unfold."

Sunday, May 4, 2014

We Were Not Here

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain." ~Kahlil Gibran

It wasn't the same this year, Flynn's birthday. Even that is hard to say.  I waited for the lead up; the weeks of turmoil and instability. I waited for my body to remember, feeling hollow and burdened and it did not happen the way I had known in the past.  Maybe it was because we left the familiarity of routine and our home, taking a mini vacation to a place of happiness. 

We were not here.  I thought I would be okay with that. Actually I was content with that until today (the day after his birthday) when I realized that a day which I have always devoted to him did not hold the same commitment to Flynn's memory ~ this year.  Sure I did a Facebook post to remind the world of his significance and my grief but that takes one second out of my day.  Consequently I was sent messages of love and friendship throughout the day and I know that he passed through the minds of my community; that is not meaningless.

Flynn is with me every day.  In a fleeting moment when I can see him in my mind's eye or feel the weight of him in my arms or in a memory of carrying him deep in my womb.  His birthday is different than every other day, it is a time when the world slows down, just the way it did for the days and weeks following his death.  I allow for the feelings that whether valid or not still come to me. There is the disappointment and shame in my body's deficiency. The sorrow in only holding him for half an hour before doctors would take me away to save me (not him). The guilt and tragedy in my recovery overlapping with his final heartbeat - I was not there when he died.  Ultimately it always comes back to the feeling of failure in being a mother that could not save her child.  I need his time so that I can give back to myself the other 364 days of joy.

Flynn - On the way home your brothers argued over who you loved more while they discussed how much they loved and missed you.