Having her in my life is like deep, clear water flowing gently over stones, meandering through the bed of earth, that fertile ground, this blissful place where life begins. Having her in my life lets this live in me, this courageous stream, this knowing she is safe. Heart beating, blood flowing, living, smiling, human life, the gift.
The place where we begin is sacred. That bright star traveling through, crossing paths with the light of the heart. The mother says hello. When I had her I was glowing. Galaxies and stars were in my body, that divine spark of creation. When I felt this, it took over all the pain and labor, dissolving all that ache. And when we looked at you and held you we were safe. We were so blessed to know you in that space. We lay together with you in the hospital bed. You were ours for one day. We looked at your fingers and toes, saw how bright your eyes were, understood what it meant to be pregnant. There was some time alone when I rocked you. Just you and me in the low lit hospital room. I didn’t know you. I didn’t know anything, just that my heart was breaking. I didn’t care about anything, except that you were safe.
Everyone came to see you and hold you and love you, and as we all got to know you I kept a certain little distance knowing the inevitable separation was coming. The worst part was goodbye. The day they came to adopt their baby. We all wept - there was no medicine for that. They were so happy and smiling. They gave me a stuffed bear, they held you and they loved you. I thought that was the end.
We packed up my things, I was wheeled out with my belongings and my new stuffed animal. We sat on the sofa and talked and cried. My mother helped me into the tub, She felt so bad for me, I curled up in the hot salty water holding onto myself. In my bed I clung to my stuffed bear and your little hospital hat. It was an unforgiving, dark volcano, molten hot dust. It seems like forever the fire. Seemed like years that I was seething and angry, some little animal growled and bristled.
It wasn’t long before his family found out about you. They say that things done in secret come to the light. Now what do I do? A chance to keep you in your family, to see you, to know you? How can we break the hearts of those who adopted you? Take you back. Give you away again. The fire passes into the winter place, it dries and hardens to protect. In time this old wound cracks. Starting down inside I wonder, how could I make up for all this loss? That infinite void of quiet, frozen emptiness. What could replace that connection? Seventeen is too young for these weighted decisions, but we made them and now you are here. Your new parents held you and loved you. They smiled and they were happy. Your room was ready. Your house, your yard, your dog and cat. We were there to see who loved you, where you lived and to visit and hold you and play.
I couldn’t survive being twisted and angry forever. You can’t live in the dark that way, that scared, that lost. Open your eyes and realize what grace has come, what the world has to offer – a girl who lives and breaths, the daughter of us all. I slowly braid myself back together. My light brightens and strengthens with years and years of healing between me and the losses and pains. Even still I work on it, the letting go and the mending up, the ebb and flow of me as I change and bloom and get to know myself.
Oh little girl you are sacred, so many relations and roots. Your family tree is doubled, your tribe is all around you. Any of us would do anything for you.To see her live is like dancing, to know her name, hear her voice, see her expressions, to read her words. Every little thing is important. It seems preposterous to be so blessed, to have this chance. In these moments the heart outweighs all else and fills me up.
I thought it would be too difficult, too hard to see her there in front of me while holding myself at a distance, to walk that tender line of appropriate vs. not, detaching for the safety of the heart. And it was difficult and it has been an exercise in contortion, but it was better than not knowing, it is better to hug heart to heart, to look into your eyes and talk.
In all that wonder of who we are and what we are doing here, the connections and the experiences matter. For all these days of magic I give thanks. It could never have been any different. We are people making choices, imperfect and uncertain. We grow older but we are still little inside, we still don’t know what we are doing. We do the best we can most days. We give and take and take and give.
I’ll take this gift of time and hold it close, every single moment spent with you.
photo credit: patries71 via photopin cc