Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Ponderings... New Normal

I felt almost normal yesterday...

I was in my workshop and felt… comfortable… for the first time in months.  There were three distinct moments where I even found myself smiling.  Twice for songs I really love, and once because a tricky technique actually worked!

And, I was able to go running - outside!  I've had several days in fact, and it is so awesome!  I almost become a different person when I can run outside.  Or is it that I become a different person when I am unable to run?

We also had a gig this past weekend, and music always makes my life seem brighter.

These are all things that are a typical part of my daily life.  But I’m just now beginning to feel at ease again, like I don’t have to pretend I know what I should be doing or that it’s where I belong. 


But, it’s different somehow.  There’s something there that wasn’t there before.  It’s like a weight, not heavy necessarily, but a weight nonetheless.  Or like a shadow, following me around everywhere I go.  I’ve heard people talk about this “differentness” before and never really understood what they were talking about.

I do now.

And I guess I've accepted that it has become a part of my new normal.

View from my run last Friday.

Monday, January 27, 2014

On Being A Birth Mother… Communication

I always looked forward to any communication between us, no matter how small or by any means.  When I’d get an email I could hardly wait to open it and devour its contents.  If I saw his name on a text message my heart would leap and jump in my chest!  I followed his facebook and myspace pages.  Any connection or communication with him caused surges of excitement, fear, anticipation, anxiety, impatience and hope.  

It made me feel so alive!

Although I had my share of fears about whether he would resent me, most of my emotions were hopeful.  I never really knew what to do or say when he would contact me.  When I’d get emails or texts, I’d analyze the heck out of what he said and what I should say back!  I always hoped that one day it would all come naturally.  Where birthday phone calls would be the norm and not something I had to agonize over – do I do it, do I not – do I call – do I text – what should I say – how do I make sure I don’t scare him away – and on and on.  I’m so grateful to my husband, who always encouraged me to look at all things about my son in an optimistic way, and encouraged me to step back, savor the experience and think through what I really wanted to say.

And as I read other birth parents’ blogs I find similar experiences when it comes to communicating with our children.  There’s just something that happens when the caller id reads “____.”   

Now, when I get a call or message from his adad or one of his friends, I also feel a surge of strong emotions, but they are different.  These people are now my main connection to him, they are the keepers of his life and memories.  I can’t express the depth of my gratitude for their willingness to continue to share with me things about his life, to let me know that even though he’s gone, I was, and am, a part of who he was.  And I’m trying to get to a place where my gratitude outweighs my grief.  Some days are better than others.

Oh, and now, even though he’s gone, I still watch his facebook page.  

I can’t help it.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


I had a wonderful weekend, which, in a way, is hard to admit.  How could I enjoy what should have been my son’s 24th birthday?

Well, I did it by surrounding myself with people I love and respect; with people who love and respect me.  With my husband, who continues to amaze me with the extent of his love and caring.  With those who have shared with me their laughter, love and friendship, and who have been with me through sorrow and grief.  People who have no expectations of what my process will be or should be, but just let me go with the flow, and float along beside me.

There was music, wine and laughter; which happen to be three of my favorite things.  There were heartfelt discussions, shared meals, and new friends.
And, yes, there were tears too.  Tears shed for the loss of what could have been - my dreams of a future with my son.  But I also shed tears of gratitude.  I am grateful to be a birth mom who not only reunited with her son, but had started building a relationship.  I was lucky enough to have seen him grown into a compassionate and kind young man, who had an enormous impact of the lives of those around him.  

I am really so very lucky, and I am thankful.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Lost Again… His Birthday

This weekend marks what would have been his 24th birthday.   
My husband is taking me out of town - no easy task in remote Alaska.   
We’re going to see a friend perform in a play, see a movie (or three), go to COSTCO.   
Such mundane, ordinary activities…  

But, he knows me.  He knows I need to keep moving.  
That as much as I want to sit and stare into space, or sleep day in and day out, what’s best for me is to keep on keeping on.   
Get out and interact with people.  
To laugh, and cry, with others. 
To live.

As we prepare to leave town I realize I will be spending this weekend with the same people who were with me the night before I found out about his death.   
The same people I spent my birthday with less than two weeks later.  
And those who just shared Christmas with me.  
They’ve been here through it all.  

I am very grateful to have such a wonderful husband, and great friends.   
It’s gonna be a tough weekend, but I won’t have to go it alone.