Five Minute Friday: Belong

5-minute-friday-1I picture you here, snuggled under layers of covers, watching movies with your sisters. I picture Sunday morning pancakes, Friday night pizza parties, and ice-cream runs in the middle of the week. I picture Lego building marathons, afternoons baking cookies, trips to libraries, the museums, and the soccer fields.

I picture you.

You were not a mistake.

You were wanted.

You were thought about for years.

We planned for you in our hearts, made space in our home. Our family is your family and would not be complete without you. You belong here, with us. I don’t know your name or the color of your skin. I don’t have a clue if your hair is long or short. I’m going to make mistakes and forget important things like what is your favorite food, your favorite color and your favorite bedtime story. I’ll have to learn what makes you scared and take note when you smile. But I  will learn.  I will cherish every moment, even if you are angry with me for wanting you. I will cry in private, in the shower, away from you on the days that are harder than others because I will want to greet you with constant open arms, constant love and acceptance. Life will not be the same without you and we will wonder how we ever managed before you. I will want to kiss you goodnight and ask how you slept. I will wait for the day when you let me hold your hand.

But I will not force you.

I will not rush you.

I will just keep reminding you every day that you belong.

That you are important.

That you matter.

That you are loved.

There will be no division between the children born of my womb and you, the child born of my heart.

* Today I’m linking up with Lisa Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday. Each week bloggers are asked to write on a topic for five minutes. No planning. No editing. Just five minutes straight from the heart. This week’s word is Belong.

Posted in My Pajama Ponderings, Writing Prompts | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Writer’s Workshop: My house shall be a mast

Mama Kat ButtonI love when the jeweler cleans my wedding ring. It’s renewed radiance resonates for days. It looks bigger and more brilliant than before and I am reminded of how it glistened in the summer sun after DW placed it on my finger over thirteen years ago. It’s easy to forget the beauty when it is dulled by the grime and dust accumulated day after day.

Recently, I have been painfully reminded how fragile relationships are, especially marriages. My daughters need to understand there are no perfect relationships. There are no knights in shining armor, no “one true loves” or perfect matches. These “fairy-tale” romances do not exist, at least not organically. After all, the word romance itself is based on feelings of exaggeration. It is associated with chivalric love and adventure. What can exist, I think, are two people who commit to loving each other and promise to spend the rest of their days actively courting and pursuing one another. One of the things I most value about my marriage is that we both choose each other. We both take care to affair-proof our relationship.

I’m not a follower of talk-shows, but I found this article by Dr. Phil to be pretty spot on. There is a lot of great advice, but here were my favorite points:

  • Don’t play games in your head. It is a short step from thought to action.
  • Don’t confuse reality with fantasy. We often forget that there’s a difference between falling in love and being in love. You can’t expect a love that grows to be like it was on the first date.
  • If you want to have a good partner, be a good partner. Put 100 percent into your marriage.
  • Work on your marriage every single day, not just during the bad times. Wake up each day and ask yourself, “What can I do today that will make my marriage better?”

There’s also a quote by Kahlil Gibran, from the book The Prophet, that found me this morning:

“Your house shall be not an anchor but a mast. It shall not be a glistening film that covers a wound, but an eyelid that guards the eye.”  – Kahlil Gibran

I can’t help but want to substitute the word marriage for house, because, after all, my relationship with DW is my comfort and my shelter. It is what I call home.

Often people say things like, “They are my rock and my anchor” when describing their closest friends or partner. However, anchors are heavy and cumbersome, aren’t they? They are large weights tied by chains that keep us from moving. The whole purpose of an anchor is so that you can’t drift, but that also means that when you have dropped anchor, you can’t go anywhere. You are confined to the same spot, your view does not change. Opportunities for growth would be limited. I don’t want to be DW’s anchor. I would never want to be what keeps him from reaching his full potential.

The idea of our relationship, our marriage, being more like a mast is much more fulfilling. In fact, it feels almost enlightening. Together we can be tall and strong; together we can hold each other upright, letting the air fill our sails and carry us anywhere we want to go. A mast towers into the sky, a backbone like structure, rising above the deck of a ship to support the yards, booms and rigging.

I want my house to be a mast, not an anchor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in My Pajama Ponderings, Writing Prompts | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

This is my inside

Two Shoes TuesdayI hoped Ed Sheeran would be my muse this morning. His music has been playing on shuffle for the last hour, but instead of being creatively ignited by rhythm and lyrics, I have merely been bobbing my head up and down, rocking shoulders left and right, in the midst of an imaginary crowd of musicians, surrounded by no one, but the dog.

Thunder grumbles outside the window, a grey sky threatening to unleash its summer spray. So I continue to sit inside. Waiting for the rain to fall. Waiting for the words to come, until all at once, a trickle leaks from the sky, quickly turning to a flood. The house grows dark, The dog shakes. The windows rattle and the trees start to follow the same back and forth motion of my shoulders, dancing in the rain.

I feel like I need to write a laundry list of moments to connect my last post to this one, a road map of events to neatly tie together April to July. But perhaps what happens on the outside matters very little since my inside continues to stay the same. Places I’ve been. People I’ve seen. Who I was in April, is really no different from who I am today.

Today I am contemplative. Today I am listening to Ed Sheeran and watching the rain while my sweet Luna puppy quivers in my lap. Today I am sad for all the inequity, violence and suffering there is in the world. Today I am thankful for even the tiniest bit of shared compassion, selflessness and unconditional love for humankind.

Today I play over and over the conversation DW and I had back in April over dinner.

“Perhaps it’s time to make a greater impact on the world, ” I said, “make someday today.”

“Perhaps you’re right, ” DW replied.

We have been married for thirteen years now, and for the last 10, we have talked around the idea of opening our home to another child. Strangely, it has always been a separate conversation than the idea of “creating” another child of our own.

“The world does not need another copy of me,” DW would joke.

When my eyes are closed, when I let my mind and heart mingle, I picture at least three children. I picture my daughters holding hands with another, guiding them with patience and unconditional love. I picture my whole family being a combination of shapes and sizes, quilted together by the threads of our existence, our need to be together and support one another, our desire to not leave a mark on the world, but instead, leave an impression of kindness.

Surprisingly, I have done a lot of writing over the last few months, just not for public viewing. I have had to dig deep inside, answering questions, responding to concerns, filling out forms, reassuring myself  and reassuring others that I do not own rose-colored-glasses.  I am both excited and scared to be near the end of this process. We are merely days away from being licensed as a foster care home with the intent to adopt. We are days away from potentially making one of the most dramatic changes to the dynamics of our family. However, it may surprise you that I feel like we have already received the most amazing gift, regardless if we are placed with a child. The gift of insight about the inner workings of our family. The gift of realizing my children have not only embraced, but cherish, the same world view and vision that DW and I have modeled. This licensing process has asked us to have deeper conversations about religion, values and moral vision. It has required us to acknowledge our mistakes or weaknesses and hone in on ways to improve our relationships. Our hopes and fears have been laid out on the table, with the understanding that our journey may take several detours before ever reaching our final destination.

This process has pulled everything from the inside to the surface. And I have reached a point of being more scared of staying the same than I am of the inevitable change.

*I am taking part in Two Shoes Tuesday hosted by Josie @ Two Shoes in Texas. Today’s prompt words were inside and extra.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in My Pajama Ponderings, Writing Prompts | Tagged , , , , , , | 17 Comments