Thursday, September 25, 2008

Reflection on Home

You know, this poetry thing stuns me. Since losing Caitlin, I find that words come to my head and fashion themselves, and then I take a step back and say, "Wow, where did that come from and what does it mean?" It's a bit like dreams. You remember your dreams and as you reflect on them you unravel what your mind has tangled for you. Thus with this poetry. I have no sense that I have skills in this art form, so I am left to unravel the tangle of words that my grief fashions.

I read "Home, but not-Home" and realized that though I was at first beginning to express my frustration that I'm so eager to get home to my husband, whose company I most cherish in life, I am still not home because my daughter is not in our physical home. So, it doesn't feel like home, because it isn't complete. Also, "home" is so very painful and confusing for me, because our home never was complete; we weren't fortunate enough to bring Caitlin home. She lived her short life in the hospital. Home is further complicated because Caitlin's home is, in my mind, heaven, and to be home with her requires a more spiritual approach--through prayer, meditation, and thoughtfulness.

With my professional work of late, I find that I ache to go home to be with my husband and connect with my daughter in some way through my grief work--the writing, the posting, the reading, the music, the reflection, the candle lighting, the update of her memory book, and so much more. The grief work gets me closer to making meaning from Caitlin's death and affords some comfort, however, it also isolates me from my husband as we both are grieving in very different ways. I find that there are times when we are home, but not home together. I fear that I will get lost in this grief and will never be home. And I scream inside for him to pull me away from my grief tasks, (though I will, and do, resist) because I want to be fully present for him at home and for her at home. The struggle to blend these places into a whole makes "home" a metaphor for balance in life as a wife and a bereaved mother. I want to be home in my own skin.

But I'm not, yet. I'm home but not-home.

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