I have been preparing all day for Calvin’s birthday party tomorrow. In part because things needed to get done. But mostly because I needed to avoid my emotions.
This morning’s tragedy in Colorado hung in the air for a few hours. I had to catch my breath a few times when I tried to imagine myself in the scene. My boys. It’s something no mother should endure. I read about Jessica who was one of the victims that lost her life. I felt like I should have felt some sort of solidarity with her for being a writer. A blogger.
Instead I thought about her mother.
I am not afraid of dying. I am afraid of being left behind. Empty. No mother should outlive her children, When these horrific scenes unfold before my eyes I am literally silenced. I have no words yet they are bouncing off the walls of my mind, screaming for freedom.
I sat down to write about how emotional I have been as I think back on Calvin’s first year in the wake of this tragedy. I’ve had a lot of healing to do since his birth. In our own dramatic story, when the odds of one or both of us losing our lives was a real possibility, we were spared. My son has a mother. I have a beautiful one year old boy.
As I sang to him tonight I just cried. He lay his head on my shoulder, which is rare. All I could do was remember our first embrace when we finally met 3 hours after his birth. There are no guarantees. My “mother’s heart” grieves for the families who are suffering loss. At the same time I am overcome with gratitude that we have Calvin’s birthday to celebrate tomorrow and mine to celebrate next week. It’s a lot to feel right now and I am going to let myself feel it.
There is a verse in the Bible (Romans 12:15) that says Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.
Today I am doing both.