usually i draw just exactly what i'm wearing at the time i draw/ write. this is some artistic license to depict my magical connection with mother nature. in other words, i am not currently wearing a flower crown in real life.
i wrote something i really loved the other day. it felt peaceful and simple. it felt like just what i wanted to say. it flowed out of me, freely, as i lazed on the couch in the afternoon sunlight of our sitting room. i wrote my final words right as nic pulled up, honking to announce his arrival after five long days away. i was just so pleased with myself and how effortless it all felt.
nic and i hugged on our step. we ate homemade veggie burritos to use up some sweet potatoes and the shitty mexican rice i'd made, heeding my mother's old adage: use what you have in the house. we played some cards at a coffee shop and got him a fresh little haircut. we chatted and loved each other.
i came home to publish my words... and they were gone.
i guess i hadn't hit save. the page had timed out. the words had disappeared.
i wallowed for a minute (maybe more... MAYBE). what about my words? what about how much i wanted to preserve them, share them, hold onto them?
i was immediately reminded of the words of pema's i'd just been ruminating upon. seeking security or perfection, rejoicing in feeling confirmed and whole, self contained and comfortable, is some kind of death. it doesn't have any fresh air. there's no room for something to come in and interrupt all that. we are killing the moment by controlling our experience.
i had felt, for a moment, too settled, too easy, too smug. i had captured it perfectly. i wanted to display it. and then it came undone.
and i said to myself, i am grateful for this seeming loss.
i am grateful for the reminder to release even what seems good. to let it come and go. to experience it and then simply await the next experience. to not dive so deeply into celebration or sorrow about what has happened that i miss what's happening presently.
the funny thing is, my initial words, the lost words, were more or less about exactly that.
and yet i clearly wasn't living it yet.
one of the babies at school had announced that she was tired of waiting for melby. that it was time for me to "share her, because that's how to be kind." another, older baby had chimed in, asserting that if i just pushed hard enough, i could expel baby m early. it was a simple matter of trying. we explored those ideas a little, and i eventually explained to them that there were interventions and medications that could amend the process if needed, but, ultimately, the body is in control of that timing. that she simply comes when she's ready.
(they were only mildly appeased by this conversation, dubious that i'm not just being lazy and/ or selfish by keeping her inside.)
my subsequent reflections were filled with laughter and the clarity with which i finally, completely saw the silliness of trying to manipulate the natural course of existence, the cadence of life itself. that this time in my life-- pregnancy-- though it hasn't been quite the mother earth goddess experience i had planned for myself, has been glorious in its imperfection, in its insistence that i release control of what happens.
because it just happens.
i am a participant, clearly. i affect certain aspects of my prenatal experience through my choices to exercise, rest, eat a particular way, hold a particular attitude, but ultimately, my body just grows this baby and then decides to bring her into the world just exactly when it's right.
and isn't that a relief? i am relieved from the burden of having to know just exactly when the course of one small human's existence has transitioned from gestational to being ready for the world at large. i am not God. i am not science. i am not nature.
i am made of such things, but i am also merely an element of a much greater whole that is not mine to manipulate or coerce into looking how i want.
i give up!
i give up in the most joyful, empowered way.
i give up.
i am on the cusp of birthing my first child. i am about to become a mother.
i have done so many, many things to prepare-- to mould my space and body and brain into something "prepared" to welcome a small, completely dependent human into the world.
and yet there's nothing i can really do. it's all just busy work. it's a false sense of control. while the real work is happening inside me, all of its own accord, on its own timetable. it is an unfolding of fingernails and eyelashes, of lungs and livers, of powerful kicks and endless hiccups. it is the really, truly miracle of life just happening and it's not mine. i am just the host.
i will probably need reminders for my whole life. i will need lost writings to be grateful for, and uncomfortable situations that turned out to be opportunities for growth, and bumps in the road that propel me into something magical. i will need reminders to stop forcing things. they will say to me again and again:
i cannot push any harder to make things happen how or why i want.
one of the babies at school overheard someone commenting on how i had "popped" the other day. (i popped a looooong time ago. but she hadn't seen me in a while.) the baby inquired about the meaning of such a phrase and i told her it meant that my belly had gotten a lot bigger. she clearly found this expression interesting. i could see her wheels turning, filing away the expression in her memory bank.
a few hours later, i saw both her and her mom walking to their car together. we chatted and the baby said, "mom, isn't ms. beth... blooming?"
that was how she remembered what she had overheard. it made me so wonderfully happy. it was so appropriate.
just as naturally, effortlessly, and simply as all of nature, without interference or agenda, i am blooming.
and that is full of fresh air. it is a cycle. i will let it come and then let it go.
the flowers are not mine. i am only a witness to their magic. i am grateful, constantly, for the reminder.