Thursday, April 14, 2011

denial isn't just a river in africa...or japan

I know it's been a while since the quake and tsunami and the nuclear threat in Japan. But, I think I am just now realizing how much it has impacted me. When it first happened I knew it was triggering something in me because I couldn't watch or listen to any news on it. My partner would be watching the news about it and I would always ask if he could change it. Then people are posting video footage and also ways others can help, and still I can't even think about it. In a way feeling like a selfish, terrible person, because I'm not on the front lines of people trying to help. Which is where I would like to be. But, I can't even stomach it.
It's horrible. I can't even begin to express just how sad it makes me feel for those people, families, children, mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, grandmothers, grandfathers. First a devastating earthquake. It levels many buildings and cities and people are buried alive in it. Then the tsunami. It comes and washes away all you know in a split second and there is not much you can do to protect yourself or others. Then the nuclear meltdown. Radiation is seeping everywhere. In the air, water, and land. It is just too much!
One of my clients is a counselor that works with the university and rape victims. One day we were talking about things and a trial came up, and then we were talking about jurors. She told me that they don't usually like to pick women the same ages as the rape victims. I thought that was strange. It's like their "people", ya know. Why wouldn't they? Well, I guess they tend to think that somehow or another the victim must have "asked" for it. Huh? It seems as a self-defence mechanism it's easier to blame the victim for the crime than the criminal, because, that is all you can really control, at least on some level anyway. Meaning that it could happen to you too, if the victim really didn't "do" anything to "deserve" it. Crazy huh??? But, on a deep level I think we all really think on this level. It's in the gut ya know. Survival.
This is what I think the tragedy in Japan has brought up in me. This can happen anywhere, anytime, and cannot be prevented. With my protective instincts at full throttle, it has shaken me to the core. How can this world be so unsafe? It seems like all I do is try to make sure things are "safe" for my baby. Baby gates, outlet plugs, wires, car seats, plants, bugs, dirt, pillow barricades, recycling, cloth diapers, organic baby food, growing my own food, biodegradable laundry detergent, global warming, what I drive, how much I drive, whom I vote for, trying to prevent terrorism from my living room, what I buy and who profits and suffers from that, and the list could go on and on. But the real dangers and things that are probably never gonna happen, but never the less things that I cannot control. Earthquakes, tsunamis, meteors, ect.....
But, it's happened to them. It's happened to them. It's happened to people that I don't know, but see their faces and hear of their courage and generosity and grace. The beauty of their actions is showing in the character that I know is in all mankind. Love. It's heartbreakingly expansive if you can let it in. I'm trying. I'm trying for my little boy.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

baby steps

So lately I have been contemplating moving Blakely out of our bed into his crib. If I could have it my way, he would sleep peacefully all night long snuggled up next to me and Chris. However, since he has learned to crawl getting him to sleep has been a nightmare, not to mention staying asleep. He has always been a light sleeper. Or, more accurately, if I'm not right next to him, he wakes up. So having a nice hour or 2 in the evening to myself is a fleeting desire. I was willing to work with it. But, now trying to get to sleep is like a wrestling match. He's nursing, he's flipping over, he's trying to climb over me to get to the nightstand, he's rolling over, he's trying to nurse while on hands and knees-it's a nightmare! Something has to give. Where to start? hhmmm....I thought I really knew who I was, but I think I am starting to understand myself in a much more clear and a bit less judgemental way now (just a bit ;)). Well, at least my parenting style anyway. I don't love big huge changes all at once. There I said it. I like to pretend that I'm super go with the flow, but really I'm attached to the way things are, to the way they are gonna be, to how they look, and to how they feel. So, baby steps. So, first thing I tried was to rock him to sleep in his room. It worked!!! He passed right out in like 10 minutes!! (Insert my expectations here!) OK, now what? I tried to put him down in his crib....nope, he wakes up. Try to put him down in the bed, and here we are not being able to get away again. hmmmp! So there I was rocking him and wishing someone could tell me what to do. Am I a good mom? Am I gonna eff him up if I let him cry it out? Can I even stomach it? And then there it was. (big breath) I wish my mom were here. (another breath) I wanna know what she did with her 4 girls. What would she do differently now? Or, maybe just for her to tell me what kind of sleeper I was. Or really anything about me as a baby. Reality is no one knows and no one can replace her. (huge breath) Blakely has been such a joy. He really has healed a part of my heart that has been aching for so long. But, has also made me realize how much I would miss him if I were to die. Let's not even think of the other way around!!(lalalalalalalalala) That is one way parenting has expanded my awareness. I always looked at my parents loss from a child's perspective. But now as a parent, oooph! That's gotta be sooooo(a million o's) hard! Leaving your children before they are independent. Before you see them date, fail, succeed, get married, have children, and before they even get to know who you are-as a person, not just mom or dad. It's just heartbreaking. (breathing) I'm not sure what happens when we die, but I sure hope I get to see them again. The idea that I may be experiencing them right now I feel like is suppose to make me feel relief, but, really it is somewhat disappointing. I'm really attached to the way they look, they smell, and all they little things that make them...well, them. Always coming back to attachments and letting go. Geeze, the eternal lesson. So right now I'll just try to let go of my idea of how we will sleep. At least tonight anyway. Then tomorrow, well it's a fresh start.