Thursday, July 30, 2009

For The Sake Of Love

So uninspired… this form which can think only of shuffling and reorganizing closets or finding some reason to venture out of doors. The shock has set in, the realization that my children are growing quickly and soon they will fly away, much sooner than I anticipated when they showed up on the scene nine years ago. Back then people said, “They grow so fast.” They said it over and over again, with their sad wrinkly faces and me, with a baby on each hip, sniffed at their admonitions and thought that it was taking time enough for my liking. Only now enough time has passed that I can gaze backwards and see the eras in their short lives that have already passed into oblivion. Once Angelina brought home stacks of beautiful multicolored art projects. She was happy and liked school. Now she brings stacks of dull white paper marked with endless streams of numbers and I can see why her eyes are puffy and her feet shuffle when she walks with her head turned down as if she were walking under a load of potato sacks. And I remember when Olivia was a little tyke allowed to do as she pleased in a little neighborhood pre-school, back before she started to grow more and more human. I can remember plenty that will flood my brains like a bathroom flooded with water and then the water might leak out of my eyes. I feel it in my heart, everything is slipping away, constantly receding, and I can do nothing to call it back, but I can try to be here in this moment as I have never been in any other. I can strive to be my most present, and not look backward or forward and in that way take some action in response to the melancholy. As uninspired as I am, I am not too troubled to look at the dirt upon the rug and realize that one day I will long to see this dirt upon this rug on this day when we are all still together, or at least what was left of us was still together. I recall spilled cereal on another carpet and crying and picking it all up by hand and being cross with two little babies because we had no vacuum and we had a roommate who would be angry with the mess. If I could waltz back through time, I would push that other mother out of the way and leave the cereal on the floor and take the children warmly in my arms and say calmly that they should be more careful and finish combing their fine little hair and washing their round little faces and help them into their little coveralls and patiently deal with all the business of the day while enjoying their presence alongside my own. My life has seemed so important to me in any given moment, that I have dragged us through strange places in pursuit of something elusive, and have almost never understood what I should truly understand. I have not been gentle enough and only now, as they grow larger and more set in their basic shape, only now am I learning the delicate art of gentleness. I hope that when they are all grown they will appreciate that all of my striving was for them too, and that they will understand that I could not be better than I was in the beginning. I hope that they will know that I was growing with them. We are three people growing together, none of us perfect, the ones who know slightly more than the others, they must naturally take the lead. The ones who don’t know as much, they must naturally follow. At any given time, I cannot be more than I am, I can only strive to refine it and make it better for the sake of love, for the sake of that which on some days may flood through me uncontrollably and leak out of my every pore. But on the days when the faucets are closed, on days like this one, I can still be here and now, and I can still know that I must keep on working and carefully set the stage for the next flood.

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