Hello, sweet friends! I am here! I got a bit overtaken with several big events and a massive To-Do list of late spring planting, building, cleanup, and animal husbandry projects that need attention. Not to mention all the little (and not so little) people who need it even more. We have had a month chock-full of family celebrations, luncheons, award ceremonies, performances and graduations. It has been a rich, full, and crazy few weeks.
We have been discussing D-Day with the school kids this week, and the adults in the house have been watching Band of Brothers, in memory not only of D-Day itself but of all of the men who endured that awful conflict and all the conflicts before and since — some which have brought us hard-won freedoms, and others which seem senseless and therefore all the more awful. It is hard for me to watch war movies as anything but a mother. I have five sons and two step-sons. When I watch or read about the things these men (boys!) go through, I can only imagine my own boys having to do the same, and I am eternally grateful for the mothers that gave the boys who became men in those trenches.
Last week my son graduated with high honors after an intense year of record-setting scores and AP tests. By every measuring stick in the land he is a man and a success. But to me he is still my child, with the entire world in front of him, waiting to be discovered; waiting for him to celebrate and mourn, to be awarded and exploited. Some of that will be hard, no matter how I would like to buffer him, but I know the aches he will survive will will become part of what makes him great.
In this month’s Somerset Studio magazine, Angel Chiasson’s artwork (shared above) declares, Because I held you and cared for you, because I loved you and learned to let you go – I am fearless. Motherhood is a magical, beautiful, intense and terrifying calling, and it does require a certain fearlessness to invest wholly in the souls in our care and yet release them to be themselves, on their own terms.
As a big sister, I have been “mothering” since I was a child; it was a natural step for me to begin mothering my own family at a young age. This journey of motherhood — from the very first stitches in that very first afghan, made in anticipation of the miracle that would be my daughter, to the quiet chat that lasted into the wee hours of this very morning — has been along a remarkable, heartbreaking, beautiful, breathless, funny, and agonizing road.
Each day begins with the needs of the youngest and prayers for the oldest and the chattering faces of everyone in between. Each day ends with some knowledge of the success of things done well and some hope of doing things better tomorrow. And that’s okay. I always will: will do better tomorrow; will have some successes; will keep hoping. Because that’s what it takes. You can’t train for this or know where you’re going, you just have to be brave, to be fearless. And really the only way to be fearless is to keep walking with your arms wide open and your heart filled beyond capacity.
This post is not the post I sat down to write. It took me a few days to decide if it was the right post at all, but here it is, still whispering to be published. I am going to go ahead and date this June 6th, the day I started it. For the boys of D-Day and their mothers. Thanks.Read More