Teardrops in the wind…..

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I post this every year….a healing,  loving ritual

because I need to somehow honor those days out loud,
especially for those who maybe still haven’t found their voices
yet.
And for all mothers everywhere,  because our hearts bear always the stretch marks
of loving and letting go.

It was March,  1979.
Breezes turned balmy and I pulled off my shoes,  letting swollen feet tramp across warming earth.
I was pregnant with my first baby,  due St. Patrick’s Day.
For weeks I had ached for time to stop,
squeezing myself shut to the coming separation,
the word “relinquish” heavy on my heart.

But today the weather had turned,  and hadn’t everything somehow changed?
Spring had come with her own dreamy wildness
and waves to ride far beyond the looming loss.

I spent the day sunsoaking,
watching the wind stir the tireswing I’d played in
not so long ago.

I was newly seventeen,
an “unwed” mother
with an unwanted chore:
to give my baby to someone she deserved.
Soon she would come apart from me,
gone before the leaves flushed out.
Their buds were fat and ready to pop.
Like me.
I went quiet with the knowing.

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But this day was vivid lovely and it got inside me.

As the sun began to dip low,
a storm of pain rumbled and hammered down urgency
inside my belly
as grownup voices began herding me into the night.

As my frightened parents gathered my things to the car,
I lunged back inside for one last moment alone
with the gentle life that had shaken mine
with her own gentle worth.

I lowered my heavy frame onto the bed and tried to sing one last lullaby
but could do only tears.
A fragile goodbye.

Following strong contractions downstairs and into the night,
I returned home with only fierce memory
of her tiny fingers and face.
But I’m forever marked by her essence,
often swept away by her melody
as it drifts across my heartstrings.

I recognize her song.

Thirty seven Springs.
I honor each of her days.
And today I tenderly comfort the girl-in-me who carried her
before she was transplanted into the garden
that nurtured her to thriving.
And I remember those shimmery days when we were just us,
when she was still mine.

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Thanks for giving a listen.  For being a witness.  I hold it as a gift with love and thanks.

“The dark does not destroy the light;  it defines it.
It’s our fear of the dark that casts our joy into the shadows.”
– Brene’ Brown

“When you get to the place where you understand that love and belonging,
your worthiness,
are a birthright and not something you have to earn,
anything is possible.”
– Brene’ Brown

I’m celebrating life this week and want to offer up a package of goodness,  Stargirl style,
in a drawing.  Just because I can.  And it makes my heart smile.
I’ll draw a name from comments and make up a gift box
full of handmade art,  handwritten love,  and beautiful little surprises
picked especially you.
A little love bomb:)
Just plunk a comment in the box and I’ll send your name into the mix.

Comments

  1. How faithful and true you are to honor this every year. Every time I read this moment in time, it grip me with such vigour and I realize it could have been me or any one of us young girls at such a young age.
    Your rendition of this event is always so poignant and it never looses it’s importance in reliving it year after year. It is etched deep in the soul and come alive every spring in remembrance of this unforgettable miraculous moment you brought a new life into this big beautiful world. You will forever be part of this life and she will be part of you.

    Hugs, Peace and Love my friend.
    JB

  2. Heartfelt hugs and oceans of caring. To you, and to all mothers. And daughters.

  3. Lynn Wilkinson says:

    I love your courage with this annual sharing… Your heart so exposed and vulnerable. It is an invitation to be honest with myself about the pains and healings in my own life. To remember the small child and young woman struggling to find a voice for the screams inside.
    Thank you Jennifer. I absolutely adore you. Adore the way you use words to create images and make them come together in the most wonderful healing stories.

    • Exactly. I was talking with a really wonderful grief counselor recently
      and she asked me “what do you think of that girl now….16 year old you?”
      My unmasked response: I wish I had been there for her.
      There is something powerful about becoming there for the parts of ourselves
      stuck in struggle. You say it so very well. Thank you.
      I love the connection we share, Lynn. And you. So much:)
      -Jennifer
      jennifer recently posted…Teardrops in the wind…..My Profile

  4. Such a moving post – and so beautifully written. As a mother who got her two children through adoption, I often wonder about their birthmoms and honour them silently on the children’s birthdays.

  5. Celeste Gerard says:

    What a lovely post. Tender memories….bitter and sweet. Hugs to you

  6. Jane Brocious
    Twitter:
    says:

    I fondly remember that “girl in you,” who gave and continues to give and celebrate the gift of life. You are simple remarkable, Jennifer! Sending much love to you the burgeoning Spring! 😘😘😘

  7. Jane Brocious
    Twitter:
    says:

    I fondly remember that “girl in you,” who gave and continues to give and celebrate the gift of life. You are simply remarkable, Jennifer! Sending much love to you this burgeoning Spring! 😘😘😘

  8. Love the way you show honor and beauty to this each year Jennifer. Lots of love to you and those who share similar stories.

  9. Grace pours from heaven when our soul sings its pain in humble truth. So beautiful, always so beautiful.

  10. I’m so glad you share this every year. I know you speak for many and it is so full of love… and of loss… but also beauty and forgiveness. Sending you a big hug!

  11. Every year when I read this I am more and more in awe of your courage and your huge heart. Your words, as always, remind me that life takes odd turns and on each and every road there is a challenge, a heartbreak, a joy, a loss. Sending love this day.

  12. I think about you often, Jennifer..and not just when you post. I think about your bravery, that fierce love for family and life, and I am always so very grateful that I have “met” you. There are miracles all the time in my life…and I always love that I found you and that you share, and I can read your beautiful words. Does that make sense?! You really are beautiful, my friend…and strong. I like the way you think and admire you so much. I have lots of thoughts always swirling in my head, but am not so good at expressing them.

  13. Oh dear Jennifer, I never fail to feel this story in my marrow. How is it possible to feel so much for a person over the miles, broad lands and rivers of this America…when we’ve never met? The power of your writing, your words–they’ve traveled straight into my heart. Like your message last week that journeyed right in and made me cry. I’m been struggling with a new definition of who I am. Right now, there is a huge sense of loss and “not knowing”. Yet, I’m certain–as I’m certain of this springtime–that my love of life will prevail. Thank you for your note on my blog, your great compassion..it meant more than I can say. You didn’t have to do that, yet you did. I do miss seeing friends in the online world–I’ll be back. Wishing you bright yellow today–the “sunshine on a stick”–a daffodil! Smiles, Susan

    • You:) So glad to hear from you; totally get you in your “not knowing” and believe in your process.
      Your love of life is so much stronger than any other message in the mire.
      You’re a lover of truth and your journey will bear that out.
      Daffodil love back to you,
      Jennifer
      jennifer recently posted…Teardrops in the wind…..My Profile

  14. Your annual posting always moves me deeply…thank you once again for sharing your story. Sending a big virtual hug…

  15. Elizabeth says:

    Every time you post this, my awe at your courage and selfless love grows bigger. I regret not knowing you (and myself) better all those years ago but am grateful that you offer such an open spirit across the miles and years so that I can learn and grow with your nurturing.

    • jennifer says:

      Not knowing ourselves….wouldn’t it have been an amazing thing to have known how to
      be there for our own selves when we were young.
      Thanks for your kind words, Elizabeth.
      I so appreciate. Deeply.
      -Jennifer
      jennifer recently posted…Teardrops in the wind…..My Profile

  16. you, she, and this are all a holy gift. much love and sweetness to you and all you love.

  17. Holding you in my heart today with extra love. You are an amazing soul . . . and I just know she is, too. xoxoxox

  18. Rebekah Petrino says:

    This is so beautiful and touching. As a new mother J know those tender moments with your child in the womb. It’s unlike anything else. You are a brave soul and I thank you for giving life.

  19. My heart is always with yours this time of each year and I’m so thankful that you share. I so agree with Julia in that this could be any of us young girls. I was 17, I kept my boy who has another birthday tomorrow, but because of that young age it was not easy.
    I love you so much, your big swollen with love heart and tender soul ~ xoxo

  20. I hope some day that baby girl will read this and understand your loss as well as her own.

  21. Every year I read your tribute through tears and honor you for your fierce determination to the truth, expressed in love. Your comment above about the conversation with the grief counselor was so powerful; it hit me right in my gut. Love you.

    • jennifer says:

      It’s a journey to learn how to be there for our own selves
      and I wonder why it seems to take so long. Thanks for your powerful words
      and beautiful heart. Your shares….I so cherish. Thanks and love,
      Jennifer
      jennifer recently posted…Teardrops in the wind…..My Profile

  22. An act of true unselfishness and bravery … Great is your heavenly reward.

    Honour to you in the gentlest way …

    L.

  23. thankful for the way to share …sending light and love to you on this yearly remembrance!

    • jennifer says:

      Me, too! Isn’t blogging incredible as a vehicle for expression like this!
      I would never have dreamed back in the days:) Thanks for coming around
      and sharing the journey, Elaine. You’re such a wonderful traveling companion:)
      -Jennifer
      jennifer recently posted…Teardrops in the wind…..My Profile

  24. I always think about you Jenny every year when March comes around. You were the bravest, strongest young lady and my cousin that I knew. What an unselfish thing you did for that beautiful little girl. I knew she was beautiful since she came from you and your Mom said she was beautiful too. What a wonder person you have become and I am so proud to call you my family!!
    Love always

  25. Karen Woodfin says:

    Such a tender story, Jennifer. Your Momma’s heart…I know there will be more to this story. The best is, yet, to come. 💖💖

  26. Jennifer
    So brave and loving for you to honor your first baby girl each and every year on this day. You know,I have always felt a strong connection with your story. My baby girl was born hours after yours, yet years apart. Tomorrow will be her 16th birthday. I will never forget the day she was born. I saw her tiny head emerge, was the first to hold and feed her, yet I did not birth her from my body. She grew in my heart for a very long time and emerged from the body of a young, beautiful, selfless 17 year old women who gave me the most meaningful and valuable gift of all –to be a mom.
    I hold you deep in my heart today and always.
    Much love and light to you.

  27. Oh, my precious friend. You are so dear! And so gifted, too! Let’s get together soon, like tomorrow! Love and hugs and huge prayers for longings fulfilled.

    Megan

  28. love to the girl you were, to the woman you are, to the child you hold close in your heart and remember…

  29. How strong + brave + true you were, you are. Sending love to you of then and you of now.

    I feel honored to have witnessed this story. Thank you.

    p.s. Your header!!! Magic!!!

  30. How moving, every year, Jennifer. I pray that you will find each other this side of heaven.

  31. I feel honoured to be a witness to how a mom’s heart, love and soul pours out, like liquid gold and the purest of bright lights into remembering and honouring your daughter and her life each of those days since her birth. Your love for her no doubt reaches her in ways that she may recognize. I love the healing, loving rituals you do for both of you. So much love to you Jennifer!! xoxo

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