I’ve posted this for many years; a loving, healing ritual.
Because I need to honor this out loud,
especially for those who haven’t found their voices yet
And to honor all of the days these 40 years since
because they are each of them marked by both pain and light.
And to honor mothers everywhere,
because our hearts bear always the stretchmarks
of loving and letting go.
It was March 1979.
Breezes turned balmy and I pulled off my shoes,
letting swollen feet tramp across the 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 morning sun-soaking, watching the wind stir the tire swing
I’d played in not so long ago.
I was newly seventeen, an “unwed” mother
with an unwanted task:
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.
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.
As my frightened parents gathered my things into the car,
I lunged back inside for one last minute alone
with the gentle life that had so shaken mine
with her own tender worth.
I lowered my heavy frame onto the bed and tried to sing one last lullabye
but could do only tears, a fragile goodbye.
Following strong contractions downstairs and
I returned home with only fierce memory
of her tiny fingers and face.
But I’m marked forever by her essence,
often swept away by her melody
as it drifts across my heartstrings.
I recognize her song.
I honor each of her days.
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.
“I don’t have much money but if I did
I’d buy a big house where we both could live.
If I were a sculptor, but then again, no
or a man who makes potions in a traveling show
I know it’s not much but it’s the best I can do
my gift is my song and this one’s for you.
And you can tell everybody this is your song
It may be quite simple but now that it’s done
I hope you don’t mind, I hope you don’t mind
that I put down in words
how wonderful life is while you’re in the world.”
– Elton John
Thanks for giving a listen.
For being a witness.
I hold this as a gift
with love and thanks – Jen
( Self care gift to myself this week – lots and lots of words;))