Wordless Wed: Between Heaven and the Depths

Try Not to Breathe

The other day, after a particularly grueling day working in the garden and the yard, I climbed into the hammock to enjoy the beautiful weather.  The Wise Guy ran over, climbed aboard,  rested his head on my shoulder,  draped  his arm across my abdomen,  and his long, lanky legs curled next to mine (how did he suddenly get so tall?).  Looking up at the crystal blue sky, he says, “Mommy, you are SO beautiful.  I never want you to leave.  Let’s stay this way forever.”

I ran my fingers through his fuzzy hair, pressed my nose to the top of his head, and breathed deeply, just like I did when he was an infant, rocking him to sleep.  I breathed him in, his spirit, his sweetness, his energy, his imagination.  I held on to the breath, let it  fill my lungs, my spirit. I tried, with all my might, to not let that breath go, to do just as he asked, to stay this way forever.

I whispered, “Let’s.  Let’s stay this way forever.”

But, no, I couldn’t hold on to that breath.  With a sigh, I exhaled.

And just like that, the moment slipped through my fingers like his hair.  The moment became  elusive, as he went on to talk to me about how he “wants to be a grown up when he grows up,” and, how he had a dream that he was driving a car to go get tomatoes.

And I thought, “Oh, yes.  We can’t stay this way forever.  You and your sister will grow up to be  grown ups.  You and your sister will drive a car.  You both will move forward, with inertia, as you are prone to do.”

And, then I realized I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Even as I consume these moments, let them fill and renew my soul and feel rewarded for all the crap that parenting also brings, I realize what amazing things I would miss if we were to stay in this moment forever.  The joys.  The discoveries. The moments of pride. The moments failure.  The moments growth.  The moments of celebration. And I know that with each new moment, I will want to hold on to it.  I will try not to breathe.  I will want to stay that way forever…… until the next precious moment.

And so it goes.

So, instead of holding my breath,  I inhale and exhale deeply.  I let the moments diffuse through my cells.  I remain open to the next moment life throws at me….. and hold on for the ride.

And what a ride it is.

Wordless Wednesday: Melt my Heart

Meet my my brand new niece, my sister, and her beautiful family.  Seriously…. heart melting.


Getting back on the horse

Wow. What a crazy few months. There was Ben’s surgery, my freaking nightmare of dental problems (long, long story) that is still ongoing and lead me to lose 18 lbs in three weeks ( a good thing, but not the way I would have wanted to lose it…..), Christmas, and two birthdays, and a business that is TAKING OFF!

To say the least, I have had my hands full. And, in turn, this blog, as well as my other one, has suffered.

With this new year, though, I plan on making blog writing a priority if only for myself. It is hard to do when you literally write over 6,000 words per day for work. Some days I wonder if I can type one more word. But it is a different type of writing. I need this creative outlet, I find. I absolutely love my job, love the challenge and feel like I am finally putting my brain and smarts to good use. I also find that I am really good at instructional design, and I would have never found that out had it not been for blogging. But I still need that creative outlet. The outlet that this type of writing and photography give me. So, I will be getting back on this horse, slowly at first until I get my demanding work schedule under control, then hopefully I will hit a groove.

That being said, I feel like I have outgrown this blog and this blog name. I started years ago, when my youngest just a baby, claiming that I was that mom…. the get real mom… the one who was down to earth, accepting, non-judgemental of all other mothers, accepting of my children while teaching them what’s what etc. And I am. I am still that mom. I love being that mom. It is my greatest accomplishment….. motherhood.

But this has become so much more. It certainly does chronicle my life as a mother, but it has also become a place of community, and political thought, and advocacy, and education. So, while I hold that down to earth mama as an essence of my being, it somehow feels aloof and denies the other parts of me as well. And, as women and mothers I feel like we deny other parts of us way too often.

So, I am at a crossroads, unsure what to do with this blog, unsure how to continue, but know that I must.

For now, I get back on this horse, if you will have me. If not, I get on anyway, writing, sharing, and being inspired by all of you.

Live Online Broadcast: PBS NewsHour Election 2010

I am hosting the PBS NewsHour Election Night 2010 Live online broadcast. Please check in at 10 pm to watch.

When Voting Was a Radical Act

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress

There was a time when voting  was considered a radical act, when the suffragists marched, demanding that they had their own voice, that they were able to speak for themselves.  There was a time when women walked to that ballot box, slipped in their ballot, BEAMING that they stood for their own convictions, that they chose for themselves.

That time is no longer.

Voting has normalized.  We walk up to the election officials, we hand over our id’s, we enter the ballot box and we do what we do.  We vote.  There is nothing radical about it.  It is our civic duty.  We simply walk up to the ballot box and choose.  I so am grateful that we no longer have to fight that fight, so happy that it is no longer considered  radical act to vote.

Except the majority of us have become complacent. The majority of us take that earned right for granted. There is the  cacophony of voices and 24 hour news cycle and negativity and  distrust.  And we have simply given up and given in.

We have given in to the notion that we lose no matter for whom we vote.  We have given in to the idea that votes are bought and sold to the highest bidder.  We have resigned ourselves to the idea that we are at war with ourselves and we best stand out of the crossfire.

So, we sit back, check out of the process.  We don’t vote, we don’t write or meet with our congressmen and women.  We don’t use our power to make a difference in what we don’t like.

OUR power.  The constitution of the United States gives the power to the people.  It gives us the power to vote and choose.  It states that the representatives of the United States represent US.  We have let the voices of the few speak for the voices of the many.  We have the power to take that back.

We vote.

We talk.

We write.

We act.

We hold the representatives accountable to their constituents, not to whom  they have in their pocket.

This may seem idealistic.  This may seem like fighting a losing battle.  This may seem unicorns and rainbows and pots of gold.  But, I assure you, it is not. It is hard work, and determination, and working together for a change. If we don’t start, we will never make inroads, and things will remain the same.

And we can not afford that.

So today, take it back.  Take back that once radical act, and start the change. Use your voice. Use your power.