Wednesday, August 5, 2015


Every once in awhile I hear a story, experience a moment, and I think, "this will be with me for forever".

So often it is you, dear sister, that undoes me.

I am not a mother now, nor do I know if I ever will be.

I hope that I have children that I can call my own someday, in whatever way that can be.

Maybe because I have a desire to "mother", maybe because the absence of "mother" is so apparent in my current work, whatever the case, it is often you mothers that I look to in awe and in despair.

Awe at all that is beautiful and possible and sacred.
Despair at all that is broken and unfair and evil.

If ever I am a mother, I imagine you will haunt me and inspire me, from moment to moment.

I imagine that when I have that first moment of pregnancy, feel that first kick, I will think of you. How brave and strong and selfless you were to carry and bear and love your baby, considering the way in which baby was conceived.

When the time comes to give birth, I can't fathom that it wouldn't cross my mind that you did it completely ALONE, on your own, on the dirty floor of an immigration cell. I can just picture that moment- how scared and abandoned you must have felt. And then how you just did it. I wonder if you cursed God alone in that room, and then looked at your child and saw Him there, somehow, afterall?

I hope I'm not like so many, who think a new baby means lots of new "stuff". With every purchase I will remember your thin blanket and empty studio. No toys, no bed, no "baby crap". But still, a happy and healthy child. I will see your faces-wanting so desperately to provide for your child, but so limited to do so.

As the years pass I am sure I will fall into a routine, perhaps your faces and stories and struggles will become distant memories, vaguely recalled from time to time.

But I know-  know that I  know that I know, when my child turns 14, or 15, or 16, I will think of all the mothers, that with desperation, hope, and despair, sent their child far away -with an unknown person, to an unknown place-maybe never hearing from them again. I really can't imagine the agony.

You have haunted me and inspired me. You who are strong and brave and selfless. You who are mothers and you who are motherless. I imagine you will follow me for all my days- both haunting me and inspiring me. May I remember. May I be strong and brave and selfless like you.

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