But I don’t feel bad or sad at all. I am cruising. I am thinking.
I remember talking with an American cousin of mine about whether natural birth changed the character of the person born. Did the painful and intense process of going through the birth channel make the person different compared to those that were born by opening up the belly and emerging directly into air?
She said something about ‘pra sess’ and I did not know what she said at first but then I recognized the American accent and the word ‘process’. Now whenever I am thinking about the concept of ‘process’ in psychological development I say ‘pra sess’ to myself.
I am ‘pra sessing’.
My Mom died last spring on March 1 st. I am still thinking about that and what it is like to go forward without a mother for the rest of my life. It did not happen before time, in fact it happened at a natural time. It all happened very naturally.
Of course, I am shot forward in my head to my death and how many years I have left in my ‘back pocket’ as Mom put it to me one day as I sat in the sun on the phone, and waited for the school bus.
I still cry over missing my Dad. He died five years ago on December 15th. I realize now that his death really broke my heart. I was in such pain I actually felt physical pain in my heart and limbs. I don’t know why it was so much more painful except that it was more sudden. And he had made he me feel less lonely in this world. Always.
During that time of physical exhaustion and mourning, two adolescent boys, emerging from sort of squalid childhood hidden behind middle class conventions, sexually assaulted my baby child. We fought back, we protected her, we survived the police, social workers and general ignorance around this issue.
So here I am, five years later, seriously aged but extremely grateful. In this seemingly short span of time my oldest daughter has grown up entirely and my middle child is turning into a man. My baby is no longer a baby. My marriage is stronger than ever.
After more than a year looking for work I have given up. The final piece of the puzzle was handed to me when my youngest said she wanted to ‘home school’ again. After a day or two to ‘ pra sess’ I jumped in with my full mind and heart.
We are having a blast of full on love and joy every day. We do crafts and cook and clean. We walk and skate and swim. We talk and dream. Math sneaks its way in with no stress or anxiety. We learn as we go.
I know that I allowed this time with my other children and I see that my life patterns don’t change. Having a baby at 40 meant extending my type of parenting for another 20 years.
I need to adjust, tighten the belt on the budget, and think about writing for money again!
My Mom moves through me. I feel her enjoyment with my domestic bliss. My Dad smiles on me too. They nod at each other, from their distant peaks, like faulty Greek Gods, united in their pride.