Sunday, March 21, 2010

Maternal Musings
Every now and then I get this pang, this knot in my stomach, a wave of mixed love, sadness, joy. As I remember the feel of Josh's tiny hand in mine or Cody's little chubby arms around my neck. I remember their little voices, their little faces turned to me, their blissful, unfettered laughter. I see them as they sleep, the peaceful slumber of the innocent and the waves of unfathomable love for them as I smoothed their hair and kissed their beautiful faces.
My boys are moving towards independence...running into to trouble, growing, stretching, falling, tumbling, rebounding, becoming.
Every now and then, I get this rush of love and adoration for them.
I miss the little them.
Now, now they hug me so hard they pop my back as they lift me six inches off the ground.
Now they wave and throw a kiss as they back their truck and SUV out of the driveway, thumping, pumping bass vibrating glass in every window within a block.
Now, he texts “I miss you, mom” randomly from his college campus or spring break with his girlfriend's family.
I get the amazing joy of hearing how my son is kind, courteous, chivalrous, and polite.
From the girlfriend's family.
From the vice principal.
From the teachers.
The beautiful cherubs I brought into this world.
The screaming, insomniac and the prolific eater.
The little toddler that gently stroked his infant brother's head until he fell asleep.
The little guy that threw a rock as hard has he could in a fit of rage and instantly regretted it as it hurled towards his brother 20 feet away.
Damnable athletic talent.
The blistering fights, the starburst of random kindness, the tight, strong, unconditional intertwining of souls.
Brothers.
My boys.
My boys are moving towards adulthood.

I love my work, the people with whom I work. I love my friends and family. I love my husband, I adore him actually. He's a great guy, he's thoughtful and giving. He's funny as hell and he knows me. I didn't think anyone would every really know me. And still be able to be with me. It's weird how we are with ourselves.
So cruel.
It's funny how we latch on to the negative, mean things people say to us, the things that others exhale and leave hanging around our neck, like anchors.
Dragging us down under the weight of phantom judgments and ghost perceptions based on falsehoods.
A thoughtless slight slices through the skin and latches onto our being.
If we are lucky we, we get to a place where we find the love for self. Where we realize that we are who we are as amazing, resourceful, compassionate, mixed up entities with swirling hoola hoops of life experiences encapsulating us, permanent frames of reference that act like buffers from the world, protecting us yet keeping us from all that is available to us.
One three word sentence from a teacher in fifth grade kept me from being creative for almost twenty five years.
It wasn't her fault.
She had no idea how much her words would become part of my being. Upon submitting my very sad little art project, she took one look and said “stick with sports”. In my mind, she was an expert, she was the authority on all that is art, all that is creative and beautiful. And I was told, in my mind, that I was excluded from that world.
We all face obstacles.
We all face trials and challenges.
Some may seem more extreme than others, some actually are.
But no one gets through this life, if they are truly experiencing life, unscathed.
At some point in our lives we have to realize that it is ours. It is up to us that we make it what we want it to be.
My husband loves me.
He adores me.
And I am worthy of that adoration.
And he is worthy of mine.
I believe that he will always be with me and me with him.

And as my boys move towards the lives that they make for themselves, I will accept that through all the setbacks, the obstacles, the times when I thought I couldn't do anymore, that I was failing...miserably, I succeeded as a mother.
I sheltered.
I consoled.
I comforted.
I guided.
I taught.
I loved unconditionally.
And I stepped back and allowed them to fail under my supervision. I always saw them as future husbands, future partners, future roommates that would need to know how to keep themselves fed, housed, laundered, on time, above water.
I taught them to think outside the box, to love, to laugh, to find the joy.
To realize that with every single thing that happens, there is something to be learned, there is something to that will help us to grow.
No matter how awful, no matter how seemingly insignificant.
I look at their friends, their girlfriends, their interactions and I am so proud.
I helped them help themselves and I couldn't be happier to wave goodbye from the front door as they venture into the world as images flash in my mind of the glorious children they used to be, the young men they are now and the wonderful grownups they are becoming.