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I Just Noticed…


It’s funny how certain days hop out at you.

I love spring. I love sitting on the back deck on weekend mornings before anyone else wakes up. It’s me, the birds, the smell of the flowers, the crisp morning air, the sun and my thoughts.

I spend every morning writing for just a little bit. Before I went to work full time, I spent a lot more time writing. Now some days I only squeak out 500 words, plus my handwritten journal.

My journal gives me time to vent, reflect and come up with other ideas that I might want to pursue on the page. I date the pages – I don’t know why. I really don’t want to keep the stacks of old notebooks for someone else to decide whether or not to throw them out once I’m gone, but there is a part of me that can’t quite toss them away either. Perhaps the dated pages will someday provide a trigger to what might have been happening in that period of my life.

Today’s date caught me off guard, May 23, 2010. It’s 10 years to the day that my twins should have been born. Wow, 10 years. When I was pregnant with them, I never imagined that I would reach my due date, but little did I know that I would look at this day in the way that I think of it now.

I’ve traversed a long way since Nolan and Simone were born (and died) on January 13, 2000. They lived for just a few short hours. I remember that day with vivid detail, all the while seeming like it occurred in another lifetime to another family.

They didn’t have a fighting chance. I suppose we could have thrown every available medical intervention at them and me to keep them incubating just a bit longer, but at that time technology wasn’t where it needed to be if quality of life was also a consideration. We chose to let nature intervene.

What would they have been like; what would I have been like? How would our life as a family differed from today? I like our life today. Is that a bad thing to say?

In many ways my life is easier today without two more children in it. When I even put that in writing, it makes me feel like a wretched mother. Things would have been dramatically different, but I can’t help but wonder how.

Time stopped when they took their last collective breath. When the clock resumed, my life no longer resembled what I ever imagined it to be.

The changes on the other side were pretty incredible. In many ways I became a better person as a result of living through that time, pain, grief, but it’s not something that I would recommend to anyone else to encourage personal growth.

We play the cards we are dealt. I know it is a stupid colloquial saying, but true nonetheless. I never imagined that level of intensity, just as I would have never dreamed I would be sitting here 10 years later writing about it.

Where does time go? It passes regardless of whether we live it or let it leave us behind.

Is it unreasonable or unrealistic to expect to live each day in a big and full way? My best…it changes from day-to-day, moment-to-moment sometimes. I occasionally fear that I will wake one day wishing I had a whole host of do-overs, but I think I know how to combat that.

Is it possible to appreciate the goodness which surrounds me – every day? The sun is peaking through the tippy top branches of the trees right now making me squint as I write with my laptop propped on my knees. That’s pretty damn cool – the deep breaths come easier when I notice things like that.

Earlier this morning I had the deck to myself. The only thing I could hear was my pen scratching across the page and then later my fingers tapping over the keyboard. In the background the birds and ducks helped pull the thoughts from my head.

Now I sit and Lyle joins me on the deck. He sees me writing, but talks anyway. It annoys me, but I don’t say anything. The sun glistens on the top of the water…appreciate that and move on.

All these moments in time add up to what? Whether I embrace them, ignore them or fight them, they happen. There are parts of my life, like the death of our twins that I would not have chosen nor wished on anyone else, yet they come and go regardless.

I choose to look forward. I can’t always predict what is next, but I can live today.

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4 Responses

  1. Very powerful, moving post today. I think many of us don’t live for the day or focus on the good things in life. Thanks for the reminder. Hugs.

  2. Thanks Karen… it really just popped up today – funny how that happens.

  3. What a utterly poignant and bittersweet post. I also appreciated what you said about Lyle talking to you even though clearly you were writing. I understand that feeling. There’s a physical sensation that comes from being interrupted, isn’t there? Anyway, just wanted you to know that I loved how you wrote about your children with such naked honesty. Sending you love and a hug.

  4. Thanks Lynn. I was truly surprised how that post popped out – even after all these years. I think sometimes it’s the mere definition of grace – if all the grief poured out at once, it would eat me alive. It may have seemed overwhelming then, but who would have known there would still be tears to shed. Oh well. I appreciate your comments.

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