One Second

One second.

Enough time to make a choice to stay or go.

Long enough to make a decision that has made every second after it feel like forever.

One second.

Long enough to glimpse the future.

Enough time to wish to every star and Goddess for it all to end.

One second.

A pivot point in time.

A step you made that took one second, and is lasting forever.

Advertisements

Baby Boxes

This evening I was moving some furniture around and re-organizing some things in closets and such. Going through cd’s and dvd’s and purging and just generally getting things in order, not that they were out of order but still…

I came across the boys “baby boxes”. I’m not a tremendously sentimental person when it comes to holding onto things and physical items but these baby boxes are something that I have put a lot of energy into over the years.

Each boys has a box that has all sorts of things from when I was pregnant with them, from the hospital when they were born and from their first few months… things like the newspaper from the day they were born, the hospital identification band from their ankle – and the matching one that I wore, the first sleeper they wore, a toque from the first time they went in the stroller… little items that signify their arrival into our life. Also inside each box is a handwritten account that I wrote for each of them of their birth… labour, delivery, my thoughts when they were born… how it felt to hold their little bodies and nurse them at birth…what our first night was like together… memories from me to them. Things that are important to me to pass along.

I still have all of the baby boxes. Even though Sons 1 and 2 are older and live on their own, I still have them. I agreed to keep them with me until they’re more settled. Son 4 is still young and one day he’ll get his to keep.

As I moved the boxes around tonight it came to me that there is one baby box that won’t ever be going off to be kept with its rightful owner though. Willie’s baby box is here along with the others but he’ll never claim it. He won’t ever go through it and read about his birth or laugh at the tiny socks that were too big for him but look so small now. All those memories put together into a keepsake box that is now nothing more than something else to decide what to do with because he’s gone.

Physical burdens that it feels wrong to throw away – wrong because he means so much and they represent him in a way. But also the knowledge that they mean nothing now that he’s gone. My memories of him won’t be diminished if the baby box is gone; I know that. Yet I simply put it back under the bed tonight…

Things are just things. Stuff. I’ve been in a situation before of having to go through a house of someone who has passed away. An older person who had a lifetime of “stuff”. Things that must have meant alot to him at one time… but with him gone and us going through it, it was all just nothing. Things that he held dear meant nothing to us so it was easy for us to just discard and move on from the piles of items.

I remember sitting in Willie’s room after he died and looking through his things and being struck by the awareness that things that meant so much to him were just nothing now. The pain of knowing that the value of importance of those items was, in essence, gone, because the person who valued them is gone. As non-sentimental as I am with most things I find myself clinging to certain things that I know Willie held close to himself. A few items that I have kept that I now hold onto as a way to maintain a physical “him” in my life. A couple articles of clothing that I associate with him that he wore just before his death… Things that, while I can’t part with them, I also don’t keep them out and in the open as they hurt too much to see and touch still.
Seeing his baby box tonight a nasty reminder of how “not here” he is now… and never will be again…and how much I miss him

Energy, Self

I’ve been thinking alot about what happens after we die and where our soul/spirit/Self goes.

Part of this is reflecting on Willie and that I’m missing him, especially as the second anniversary of his death comes close. But it’s also part of a bigger question that I’ve been looking at for years before this loss as well.

For about the last 15 years I have not only practiced Yoga but also been a teacher of it as well. One aspect of Yoga that called to me and clicked with me when I began was the more “eastern” teachings of the Self and our journey in this life and beyond. I have been drawn towards the Buddhist teachings and principles beyond most else for personal reasons. Since spiritual beliefs are a hot button topic, I will suffice to say that my views are mine and yours are yours. Agreeing to respect each others beliefs is the base for me with regards to this.

In working and meeting with a Buddhist Priest last year to discuss grief and depression she had mentioned a base principle in Buddhism with regards to our journey of life in this body that we have for the “now”. She mentioned that each of us have a path and a reason why we’re in the body and the life that we’re experiencing now, this time. That a baby that is born still may seem like there is no reason for it but maybe that souls reason for being was simply to provide an experience for the mother that SHE needed to learn, or the father… or a sibling… or a doctor or nurse in the room…. the fact is that none of us KNOW and it’s not something for us TO know. We just journey. She explained that maybe Willie had learned and experienced what he was meant to and his journey was done. Or maybe his journey was meant to impart lessons for others and that was what his path was for this time. She impressed upon me that I won’t ever know the “why” that I am looking for and that its ok not to know. That was hard for me to accept. Still not sure I do, on an emotional level.

Watching a show this morning on reincarnation and rebirth brought back that visit and is what has got me musing this morning on this. I do believe, adamantly, that energy – what we are made of – does not just disappear when the body we are in dies. I do not believe in the biblical version of heaven and hell… but rather a belief that our Self moves on and continues. Whether that be into a new infancy and human life or as energy in another form, I don’t know.

I know that I had an odd experience about 2 weeks after Willie died that did make me wonder “where” he is… and more generally… where do we go. Do we wander about for a while or are slotted right back into a new start… who knows. I was at a movie with my youngest son and it was just before the movie was going to start… the house lights were still up and there were very few people in the theatre. My son and I were sitting waiting in our seats and there were so many empty rows around us. A young mother and her very little boy (about 2 years old) came up the stairs and turned into the aisle directly behind ours. I looked over and smiled at him and he smiled at me, a really cute little shy smile. The mother passed by behind me and as her son went past me, he stopped and put his hand on my head. It was the strangest sensation and it gave me goosebumps. My son looked at me questioning and I started to turn around to look at the little boy (who still had his hand on my head)… his mother was about 20 feet away by now and she glanced back, saw what was happening and said clearly “Willie, what are you doing?”… My heart skipped and the little boy said “just touching mommy”… and he let go and smiled and walked off with his Mom. Part of me was shaken but a larger part was calmed and at peace after that moment.

I don’t know so much about the why’s and the reasons and I never will. But I’m starting to see past the need for answers to just being able to know that what is, just is. Not acceptance but knowledge. Acceptance, to me, infers that something is acceptABLE… and this loss isn’t and never will be. So I’m settling for understanding and knowledge and belief that Who he is, still is… and still exists – just not with us here physically anymore.

Silence

You know how you were told as a child that if you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all? Well, that explains my silence on the blogosphere recently.

With depression and grief – and the depression has reared up again badly lately – there are times, many many times, when I feel like I sound like a broken record… and what do you do with a broken record that keeps skipping? You shut it off – because it’s annoying. And you can’t make it play “right”… so you just give up and make the infernal noise stop.
That’s how I feel lately. No point in writing about how much it hurts – it’s all been said before. No point in trying to be optimistic and hopeful – I don’t feel it right now. So, silence for a while.

I know that I have many friends and loved ones who tell me over and over again that I can just be how I am and it’s ok. I believe them… but I also feel that having my shit and my issues a part of their daily life is not only not fair, it makes me feel like a burden.

Regardless of how many times someone tells me I’m not, it doesn’t make a difference in how I feel. The reality is that if someone you love and care for needs help or nurturing or care then you give it… I’m the same way… and I am blessed to have friends who are the same way too – I know that. It doesn’t change the over-whelming desire I have to just go away and remove myself from everyone. It doesn’t change that I want to just say “fine” when asked how I am by my closest people in my life now. Because I’m so sorry and ashamed and upset that I’m NOT fine – in spite of all of their love and support and caring… I’m frustrated at myself that I have so much love in my life and people who care so deeply for me and I’m not able to be better and ok. The anger that I have at myself for not being strong enough to do what I keep being told that I need to do is insurmountable some days. Today being one of those days. Fingers crossed tomorrow’s better.

Stories

“I would rather have the worst day with you than the best day without you” ….That’s what I said to Willie when asked me why I wouldn’t just accept that he wanted to kill himself. That was the day before he died. We were on our way to what would be his last counselling session and he had tried to explain to me that while he understood that I would be sad at first, that, in the long run, I would “get over it” and life would be ok again. I’ll admit that I looked at him like he had lost all sense… and in a way, he had.

I didn’t know then that it was one of the last conversations that I would have with him or that, in all likelihood, he knew what he was going to do the next day and this was his way of saying goodbye…one last attempt to help me understand and accept his choice.

This isn’t to dwell or re-live though… this is to say that while life does indeed go on and that joy does creep back in and that I do see now that I can live my life with him missing… the truth is that I still feel exactly the same way as I did that day. I accept that I have to live every day of the rest of my life without one of my sons; it doesn’t change what I said that day to him, and it doesn’t change the truth of it. The loss of him will always be there, it won’t ever go away or be not a part of my life. But… it’s not who I am.

We all have a story of our lives. That’s what this thing called life is. Our story of this journey. But who we are… really are… is not our story – we’re not that small and limited. No matter how “big” we feel our stories are, we are more. We are limitless and boundless and unable to be confined and corralled in by beliefs that stop us from living beyond the cages we put ourselves in. A story tells about something… it’s a message, not the subject. Losing Willie is something that happened to me, it’s not who I am. He’s gone and I go on. Just as my other children are part of my story, Willie is and alway will be as well. Just in a different way.

365smiles

I’ve said for a while now that it’s time to put the focus back into finding and experiencing joy again. A text conversation with one of my sons the other day was like a smack upside the head… a simple idea: the “big” happy moments in life come by few and far between but every day pretty much has at least a few little things that make you smile (or at the very least make you think “hmmmm” in an amused way!)… and it’s the accumulation of all those little things that bring the most joy to our lives.

An evening spent with people I care deeply for – laughing and talking, snuggles and holding hands together … reminding me that an easy and fun evening can be simple and enjoyed. That I can still feel what I wasn’t sure I could anymore.

Living through grieving and at the point of moving forward now sometimes I lose sight of those little things.

So, in the spirit of life being lived with smiles and laughter again it’s project time 🙂

365smiles… everyday a picture or writing of something that brings a smile to my face or laughter to my day… because joy should be shared 🙂

I’ll be posting using my lolabits blog; http://lolabits.wordpress.com/ . If you’re reading this on my truthfreedomjoy blog ( https://truthfreedomjoy.wordpress.com/ ) pop on over and sign up to follow or sign up for email updates :).

Keep smiling – or start smiling if you’re not 😉

Lola
Live Openly, Live Abundantly