Teardrops in the Wind….

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I post this each year…..please hear that it comes from a place of healing and hope
But I need somehow to honor these days out loud,
especially for those who maybe haven’t found their voices
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.

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
and toward the hospital.

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

I lowered my heavy frame onto the bed,
and tried to sing a 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 six 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 remember those shimmery days when we were just us,
when she was still mine.

blog blossom
“I suppose that since most of our hurts come through relationship,
so will most of our healing,
and I know that grace rarely makes sense to those
looking in from the outside.”
-Paul Young

It’s sweet joy to send a copy of Ripplesongs March to beautiful Jeanie of The Marmalade Gypsy
With a whole heap of love:)


  1. Elephant's Child on March 15, 2015 at 1:38 pm

    While you continue to post this every year, I will continue to read it. And go misty in the eyes, and ache for you.

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 3:58 pm

      sending a heartfull of more thanks
      than I can find the words
      to wrap around.
      with much love:)

  2. Nancy on March 15, 2015 at 2:18 pm

    My sweet sweet one, my heart aches for you as well and I pray you filled with peace knowing you brought into this world to be a joy to many…..

    • Julia on March 15, 2015 at 5:24 pm

      Dear Jennifer, you are the voice for so many women who never got to express their story that lives on in their memory. Each year you post it , I read it with the utmost reverence.
      Big hugs to you for sharing your most sacred story.


    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 3:59 pm

      Sending a heartfull of thanks
      that I don’t have the words
      to wrap around.
      With much love, dear Julia,

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:00 pm

      And to you, dear Nancy (somehow I can’t reply directly to your comment)
      I so appreciate and thank you,

  3. Lady Fi on March 15, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    Oh gosh – this moved me to tears. So beautifully written and so heart-breaking.

    As a mother who has two adopted children, I always honour the memory of their birth mothers, realizing now more than ever – that their heartbreak is the source of my joy.

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:02 pm

      I love that you’ve adopted children…..the mother of my birth daughter
      has such a dear and honored place in my heart. I love her. I have loved
      her for 36 years. Sending love and gratitude to you (in their stead) for being the garden
      their children were blessed to grow and thrive in; I’m sure you were the answer
      to their prayers.

  4. Ann on March 16, 2015 at 9:51 am

    I’m amazed how you make words sing! I love you my sister!

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:03 pm

      Thanks Ann:)
      I appreciate your kind encouragement!
      And love you much:)

  5. Amanda Fall on March 16, 2015 at 10:15 am

    Dearest Jen . . . your heart is so clear and strong. I hear this & I am holding gentle love for you and ALL your beloveds today. Blowing kisses in the wind toward you. May you feel the gentlest of peace.

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:05 pm

      I receive those kisses in the wind
      with a heartfull of sooooooo much more thanks
      than I know how to say.
      You are such a dear and shiny light
      and I’m grateful that you are:)

  6. susan troccolo on March 16, 2015 at 10:55 am

    Each year I read this, and each year, I sob gently with the exquisite female beauty of it. The tenderness, the power of your love…your gift in this poem should go around the world and back for all the young women who have had to give up a child. I’ll write you separately, but I would like to inquire about using a paragraph of this in the book I’m writing.

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:06 pm

      I love that you lean in to feel this with me, Susan,
      and that you value the words enough to share.
      Much love and thanks,

  7. Simone on March 16, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    Heartachingly and beautifully written. x

  8. gotham girl on March 16, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    I remember reading this last year…and even a year later it gets me in the gut. You are an amazing woman.

  9. jeanie on March 17, 2015 at 2:00 pm

    Every time I read this, it never ceases to touch me to my very core. My only hope is that this 36-year-old girl/woman is perhaps a blogger. Maybe your girl-woman, maybe another — but that she (or all the others, younger and older) read this and know that the decision of saying goodbye is not always of choice but of necessity, of doing the better good. and that doing that better good is hard indeed. I send love, especially on this day, at this time and with a full heart.

  10. jeanie on March 17, 2015 at 2:01 pm

    I just went back to re-read this and realized that I am your lucky March Ripplesongs recipient.

    I am elated. Thank you!

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:08 pm

      So glad for your visit, Jeanie, and will write more to you
      when I send your little package:)
      With a heartfull of love and thanks,

  11. Jennifer Richardson on March 17, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    I’m so glad you dropped by, Simone;
    thanks for your kind and encouraging words:)

  12. Donna on March 18, 2015 at 4:04 pm

    Big huge healing hugs to you my friend….I cannot even imagine the loss you felt Jennifer.

    • Jennifer Richardson on March 18, 2015 at 4:21 pm

      A very large thanks, dear Donna;
      I’m so grateful for the healing that has happened
      and is happening still.
      Big hugs,

  13. Sue on March 19, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Jennifer- I’m not sure how but this is the first time I’ve read this post. Tears are falling and my heart is aching. Sending hugs across the miles to you.

  14. Anne Camblin on March 19, 2015 at 10:09 am

    It doesn’t matter that I have known this story for so many years, every year the tears flow again. I have shared this with others who have needed it and it has never failed to bring blessing and hope. Love you.

  15. Kimber Britner on March 19, 2015 at 11:22 am

    So beautiful, breathtaking! A happy and heavy sigh….

  16. eva on March 20, 2015 at 12:45 pm

    My dear sweet friend…beautiful, passionate, loving, powerful…just a few words that popped into my mind reading this…they describe the words and the author. Love to you.

  17. Amy Putkonen on March 20, 2015 at 1:14 pm

    What a sweet and tender post. I am hoping that all adopted children hear this cry of love that comes from a parent who lost as well. There are many of you. <3

  18. kamana on March 20, 2015 at 9:00 pm

    and every time it brings tears to my eyes, touches my very core. hugs to you my dear friend.

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