Monday, August 13, 2012

Letting go

As I sit here on the last morning with my oldest son after setting him up in his own apartment, I feel overwhelmed with emotions. Those who know him understand when I say that a part of me is ready. The size of the male character at 19 years old can be Very large if they have been well loved, nurtured and protected. And, these, he has for sure!

It's impossible to find the words to express the pride I feel over my son who began with having been home-schooled his whole life to at the age of 19, having 3 years of college under his belt. He has achieved many awards and scholarships of recognition for academic achievement and is entering an elite university to acquire the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Art and Animation. I'm writing this to empty my heart and not to gloat, so trust me when I say that I have gone through heaven and hell to get him to this point, and with the strength of character in which he is arriving.

Just when I found myself a legal adult, I found myself expecting to be a parent. That parallel will never be lost on me; for my whole adult life I have, in fact, been Mom. I jumped at the title and enthusiastically poured myself into being the best mother any could be. When faced with birth, even at such an innocent age, I chose to birth at home where the whole experience would be intimate and unhampered. Turn, after turn, I bucked the 'parenting system' and made choices that seemed more to alienate me rather than gain me supporters. And yet, with every single choice, I knew, it would some day come back to me. I had to make the right choice, even when it was't popular or easy. And, by God, I made some tough ones!

Just like it was yesterday, I see my chubby little blond haired nursling smiling at me and I can literally feel the silky, squishy baby-ness at my fingertips. And today, at 6'2", that man has the same eyes that gazed at me so needfully then. But only I know the road ahead. Only I know how many lessons he has to learn and can see the bumps in the road. And this mama wants to pick him up in my arms and walk the road for him. But I can't. The time has come to put him down, let go of his hand and watch him take his own path.

And I see that this journey isn't just about him. I have done my job as well, and even better in some cases, than I could have expected. For this, I have earned peace, you would think. But it's not so easy to love passionately, fearlessly, at all costs and then to let go. It's not so easy to lay down your life for someone and then to let them leave. This, then becomes my journey. To fearlessly let go. To passionately surrender to the birth of my adult child. One thing will remain true for all days; that no circumstance, no situation, and no length of time could ever weaken the deep love I have for my son, my Life, My Love.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Life is new

And I am ready to be ME! All kinds of changes are lining up and I am setting my sails for a bright, new future..........I can't WAIT to see where it lands us!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Closure and healing

After one year, I can say that I am in a place of peace. How difficult it was, I would have never imagined. How painful, no clue, and also, how fulfilling, more than I could have dreamed.

I am now cherishing the healing and balance that is coming to my body, my mind, and my spirit. The night of our one year anniversary of departing was bitter sweet. I recalled the pain. But I recalled it with clarity and sympathy that I could not at that time offer myself. It was ok that it was not what I had planned. It was ok that it was not what I had wanted. It is all ok. And so am I.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


ONE WHOLE YEAR AGO, I was blessed to be a part of making someone's dreams of being parents come true. As I spent the second day of my two day road trip to Irvine, California (not far from where this journey began), I reflected long and hard on this special day.
The journey has been tough and I am still working on finding my new balance, but the joy and love and pride of the process glows brilliantly in my heart. One year ago, I very difficultly gave birth to a baby that I wasn't ready to birth and let go of. The dynamics of the surrogacy were larger than I could have ever know. But the process of learning and growth that I have been blessed with as a result are priceless. I will never be the same and for this, I am glad.

For the last few weeks, I have been consumed with building a balance in my mind and spirt and it has been working! As I drove for 15 hours, I cried, prayed and sang my heart out, all in love and worship of an amazing God who is guiding my life. It feels amazing to feel good and happy. To feel the joy in my heart and know that life is not only worth living, but an amazing gift to be cherished and embraced.

Today, I chose to let myself remember that the pregnancy and birth and obviously, the letting go was hard. But, more than that, I allowed myself to Meditate on the beauty of it all. It changed me and moulded me more into the woman that I am destined to be. 

Happy birthday to my sweet Mika and much love for that sweetest of Decembers, that I will never forget  <3

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hitting bottom is sometimes a relief

There is peace in honesty, I find. I now feel like I have surrendered and quit hiding from the reality of my state of being and can leg go to move on. In combination with the supplements that I am taking, I have pampered myself in multiple ways. The respect towards myself has also grown, which allows me to lighten up about my expectations of myself. For me, this means that I am not forcing myself to do so much in a day and if certain  things don't get done, so be it. right now, I feel like I need to make ME a priority and just find balance and health between the ears and heart. Just as if I had broken a limb, I wouldn't want to stress it, but give it time to heal, I must also respect the time that this will take.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The other side of bliss (warning: it's not pretty)

I can almost feel it: the cold rain on my cheeks as I sit perched, wrapped in the warm bath, my face resting on the sill just inches from the elements. With no screen to separate me, I can smell the rain and almost feel the jostle of the leaves as it softly beats down to the ground. Like a cleansing shower. I breathe in and feel the presence of God wrapping me in his sweet arms, as a lonely companion in my despair, reminding me that like the rain, this too will pass.

But, will it? Really? Eleven months after the birth of the fifth baby to come from my body, I feel that I am no longer sure who I am and WHAT is next. It's as if my body, my mind, and my spirit are exhausted from the toil of pressing on and I just don't care and more. I don't care about anything....

And here I sit, soaking in my tub wondering where the woman that I thought I was has gone to. My hands grapple and search for a switch to flip the light that will reveal the 'real' me. And it's not there.... it's nowhere.......

God, I pray and plead, bring me comfort! My soul aches and my heart is no more! I know that you are my very real and present God who leads me, but there is nothing left..... It is too much and I am crushed. It's life......This life that you have given me to live........forgive me that I am ungrateful, but it is coming to be the death of me........ Yes, I daily wake and thank you for my blessings and lie down at night, recounting the same. But it is empty and hollow. The only Real that I know is that you are my God and I am are my father and I need you now........I need your work and your strength to fill me because the struggles have crushed me to the ground. You say that you do not give more than I can bare, but my God, I think you mis-judge!.....SURELY, I am NOT so strong.......... I need you now.

My tears and prayers pour down my cheeks mimicking the outside rain so close to me now.  It's as if I am losing my mind, but yet, it is within reach. I know that I am not right and that I can be. But, how? As I surendure fully and know that I must, I can hear the term; 'postpartum depression' ring in my ears. This disgusting thing that I have avoided speaking for so long is taunting me now as I must wave the white flag. When I look back and try to guess when it began, honestly, it must have been a very real imbalance during the pregnancy that was so tough. I have struggled for so long to accept my decision to be a surrogate in spite of the traumatic affect that the drugs and pregnancy had on my spite of the traumatic affect that carrying someone else's baby spite of the fact that birthing a baby that I was not emotionally prepared to birth had on my spite of the grueling pain that letting her go was.........and the real healing: it has not come........

As I sit here swirling in a tiny cocoon of warmpth, right in the very bath that this baby was born, I feel only joy and love toward her and her parents. The gift of surrogacy is something that I would be a part of over and over if only I had the strength. It was the most purest of sacrifice and love; a true beauty.

Adding very real life stressors on top of an already turbulent process can bring a catechism of storms.... just as a strech-mark can be a very tangible physical side affect, so too can the hormones and psyche be scared by even the most perfect of circumstance, especially when coupled with other stress. There is no pregnancy immune from postpartum depression......and this is where I am currently sitting; filling my mouth with vitamins and herbs that are said to balance, forcing myself into fresh air and activity, forcing indulgences that USED to bring me joy, all in the hopes of turning the mental, hormonal and chemical weather in my life around.

Stepping out of the comfort of my bath, I can know that I truly AM blessed in my life. I can run to the waiting arms of my husband and loving arms of my ever-present God.......but when will I FEEL this all in my heart?..........we will see.........

Saturday, October 9, 2010

It has been a long time

Although it has been ten months now since I gave birth to my surrogate baby, yesterday, I was there again. In full form and glory. Feeling the intensity of the joy, the pain and all of the fullness of what my journey through surrogacy was.

I am honored to have been asked to be doula to my friend and first time surrogate recently. Her IPs are from Seattle and have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of their baby girl. Although they didn't have to wait as long as expected.........the baby's waters broke at 34 weeks. My friend called me and I eagerly dropped my life and went to her side, giving everything I had to be what they all might need. This is something that I do love to do, but man, it is hard. Physically, I mean. Not only did I leave my four children alone for a long time, but standing on my feet 75% of the time and being up all night (actually, 32 hours) was obviously draining.

Where the REAL stress came in was when it triggered my deeper conscious who remembers so intently of how deep, how raw, how joyful and how painful my surrogacy was. As my friend was pushing this baby girl out, the mother stand at the end of the bed, watching and my eyes fixed on her. As her cheeks flushed with pink and eyes welled with tears, the brows pulled tight and she clenched her fists to her chest in sheer joy and expectation of the daughter that she so deeply longed for. It was as if my stomached dropped into my belly and my heart creeped up into my throat. All at once, I was filled with joy and pain and I thought that I should run. I saw my friend hold the baby that she grew for so long cuddle this sweet newborn girl as the baby's parents watched on. I almost felt sick for the impending pain that might be coming (because who's to say that it will be tough for everyone?).

As I observed the new baby now enjoying skin to skin with her natural parents and their sheer joy, I noticed that the professionals had filtered away from my now stable friend and she lay alone with her husband comforting her. Walking up, I felt some of her pain, but also, I felt my own. I saw myself in the airport, bent so painfully over my deer sweet friend and surrogate baby in sling, laying a kiss on her forehead and telling her that I loved here, tears pouring down mine and the mother's face, we embraced. It was as if something so special that I had put in a trunk had been opened again. And I remembered all of the nights that I cried myself to sleep feeling so very alone and knowing that I went through this for my own children. No one will ever fully know or understand.

I stroked the hair of my friend as she lie in a bloody, raw mess, so empty I told her I was proud of her and tears fell from her eyes as she said that it was harder than she thought it would be. Inside, I held my breath and knew that there would be many more tears to come. Tears now pouring down my face, I shakily told her that we could cry together. As I kissed her forehead, I vowed to myself to help her avoid as much of the pain as possible.

While it might have been the intent for me as a doula to help her feel as comfortable as possible, I know more than anyone could that my role now actually begins.......