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February 25, 2011

firsts... .

his first steps on the beach, naples

with life and death, come a thousands firsts...

for those with children, its about the first time his sweet little feet touched the beach, his first smile, his first steps, first words, the first time he goes to school, rides a bike.... and there is such sweet, pure, joy linked to every single little thing.

for those who have lost someone,
it's the first Christmas without her, the first Mother's day,
the first time you couldn't tell her the good news,
or ask her about that recipe...

it's the first time going to her home without her there.
it's the first time boarding an airplane without calling her to say "I love you."

it's the first time you hear her favorite song on the radio,
or drive by the place you used to go for dinner.

and the feeling? ...it's that pit in the stomach, the lump in your throat, and a deep ache in the heart. . .

sometimes i think i am doing okay, i go throughout my day and i almost feel normal. and even though she is always on my mind, I only have a few teary moments.

other times, the grief hits me like a ball out of left field, and it feels like the day after all over again.

but this is how it goes.

(everyone says so.)

This past week we had a celebration service for my Mom with all her friends in Florida. It was such a lovely tribute, the flowers, the food, the wine, the music, the photos, the beautiful painting, and so many stories about our dear Mom from almost 200 of her friends.

At one point,
i looked across the room at my brother and my sister,
and i realized we were all three smiling.

smiling as we reflected on the life of Mom.

another first....

Posted by jen at 12:54 PM   |   link   |   

February 17, 2011

One Week...


"When you get those rare moments of clarity,
those flashes when the universe makes sense,
you try desperately to hold on to them. They are the life boats for the darker times, when the vastness of it all, the incomprehensible nature of life is completely illusive.

So the question becomes, or should have been all along...
What would you do if you knew you only had one day,
or one week,
or one month to live?
What life boat would you grab on to?
What secret would you tell?
What band would you see?
What person would you declare your love to?
What wish would you fulfill?
What exotic locale would you fly to for coffee?
What book would you write?

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield". One Week (2008)

Posted by jen at 08:52 PM   |   link   |   

February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day...

Photo taken by our favorite, Paul Van Vleck

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. - Lao Tzu

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Posted by jen at 09:23 AM   |   link   |   

February 08, 2011

what it's like.

stablesyel.jpg where the streets have no name, yelapa

it's like a time warp.
it's like going to a foreign place,
or feeling like an alien.

it's like having a swiss cheese heart.

it's like the kind of tired you get if you've had too much cold medicine.
it's like being lost in your own home town.
it's like wearing headphones and listening to a song called "Fog."

i try to pay attention,
i really do...
i try to be present, to listen,
i try to act "normal" and not disrupt anything, anyone ~

but the truth is,
i am a million miles away....

all i think about is my Mom.

and there are moments i have buckets of tears just waiting to spill.

so many things remind me of her,
just hearing the word "Mom"
or when driving down the road i take home from work, where we would have our chats. i think of mom when i go to each and every room in our house. she is everywhere i turn... .

the thing is, i want these memories, they make me feel close to her.
and the crying eventually gives way to some kind of release.

Ive been reading alot about grief, you know, my attempt at finding a map in all of this, and I love this quote by Colette:

"It's so curious: one can resist tears and 'behave' very well in the hardest hours of grief. But then someone makes you a friendly sign behind a window, or one notices that a flower that was in bud only yesterday has suddenly blossomed, or a letter slips from a drawer... and everything collapses."

It is so true...behaving, resisting, collapsing..

Not only do you have to deal with the weight of grief alone, but you have to figure out HOW it works, with a brain that is at best, way overcooked.
I need to find my own way through this
and not be swayed from doing what know I need to do in order to heal. I need to allow myself the time, the space, the specific things my heart requires. (Well, that is what I am trying to do at least...)

Thank you for your continued support,
I feel it and appreciate it so much...

Posted by jen at 12:51 PM   |   link   |