Sunday, November 16, 2014

Every Year

Remembering my daughter, Caitlin Anne, today on her death date--the first day of the meaning of forever.

Every year in July, I write my daughter's name in the sand at the beach. I pick up a stick or shell, and trace the letters of her first and middle name in quick cursive. Stepping back with my bare feet firmly on shore, I study it--the lines, curves, and dot above the i in her name. In this ritual of devotion and observance of her life, I once again enter the realm of magical thinking--my hope that the ocean won't wash her away. And every year, the wave does what it does--and once again shares with me what forever means.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

I am not Blessed

When people describe their blessings as bestowed by God, I cringe. Because, I know that I am not blessed. I was not blessed with meeting the perfect husband in my child-bearing years. I was not blessed with a healthy baby who now is everything I live for. I was not blessed with a birth family who picked us to parent their child. If these are the blessings that some attribute to God, then I am not blessed.

Blessings, you see are relative.  One knows to call something a blessing when one knows the antithesis. I live the antithesis so that others know what to call their blessings.

People generally, don't like it when one self-describes herself as "not blessed." When I articulate my reasoning, people say to me, "ah, but you should count your blessings." That makes me cringe too. Because what they are really doing is "should-ing" on me. They assume, and wrongly so, that I am not grateful for what is good in my life. I love the husband I married. I love my work. I love my family. I love that Caitlin made me a mom. I'm aware that I am loved when I least deserve it.

But, I won't "count my blessings." Why? Because when I'm told that I "should count my blessings, that means that I should be grateful that I have some things that others do not have---and therein lies the problem. I reject the notion that by finding "blessings" that someone else was not "worthy" to receive, that that should make me feel better. I can be grateful for what I have without feeling happy that others are less fortunate.

I will not be uplifted by the misfortunes of others, and I will not be diminished by the fortunes of others. I am grateful, thought not blessed.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fuck You, Cancer

Ah, $h!it . . . I reached a new hope that life would settle a bit. My new/old job and return to my music family and friends and then cancer strikes again . . .  I know, I know, it's not about me and I'm grateful I'm home this time to support my friend through the end of remission, and through her second round of Chemo, and on to the second remission.

But let's be honest, I struggle with knowing the if she dies, I am going to take it personally. HOW DARE God/Universe/ALLAH/and the like take another beautiful person with no regard for what the world needs. How dare it. There is no prayer that can soothe this anger. But it's my anger not her's, so once again I'll do my best to choose joy when she's around, but when she's not, I will seethe. I will curse. And I will weep.

Fuck you cancer. And fuck you industry, commercialism, and corporations that have successfully created an environment that enables, and yes, even causes this disease.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Though, it's been several months, for Caitlin's death date, her dad and I released balloons at her grave site. As I looked up and watched the balloons fade into the the brilliantly blue winter sky, DH snapped a family portrait. Parents at their only child's grave site. It is what it is. We must acknowledge the family we have.