The house is quiet now. The kids left with their Dad for Easter Sunday.
At the crack of dawn JB crawled in his bed with me while KD made the “we’re up” call to begin the Easter morning ritual. Mandy won the egg hunt through the night and the bunny had to re-cloak while the kids were scurrying for chocolate. Six Webkinz he brought. They are all safely snuggled in their beds. I’m sure it will be a computer day at Dad’s today. I’ll see them bright and early tomorrow morning and we’ll share the day, high on chocolate and lots of love.
Easter always brings me down. I’m not sure why. Perhaps it’s the christian sorrow associated with the death of Jesus…have you ever been to a Good Friday service? I went once and am scared for life…will not go back. My God doesn’t want me to feel shame, sorrow and pain. My God supports my path to joy. Sure, we all must feel some pain to recognize our joy and create boundaries for ourselves, but why all the drama? I’m glad to say Alleluia today and let go of my attachment to anything other than the present moment.
A group of women bloggers are gearing up for BlogHer ’08, set for the Canadian May long weekend in Chester, NS. I visited Sweet | Salty for the first time in a while the other night and, as always, was absorbed in the prose of such a profoundly spiritual woman who has lived through more than I care to experience, save for her words. From there, I met Thordora who questions the existence of God and anything beyond the flesh of this lifetime. And that got me a thinkin’. I actually drafted a response to an extremely thoughtful and respectful thread, but abandoned it. I needed more time and it was already 3 am.
I remember the tsunami disaster, and watching—as we sat comfortably in our Christmas sparkle—the devastation, loss and pain left in its wake.
The story of the father who clung to his 2 year old while struggling against the power of the wave, and then losing him while trying to grasp a stronger hold. He watched helplessly as his son was taken away. “Daddy, I’m scared,” were the last words that father heard. On the boy’s tiny arms were inflatable arm bands and I remember scouring the tv screen for them each time I joined their sorrow-filled world, listening for a miracle in my ears.
The group of children who were found in a circle, holding hands. Their last moments of life, huddle together for comfort. The mother who had to choose between two sons, but was rewarded with the life of both.
I’ll stop there for fear of frying my keyboard.
I’ve had sad moments close to home too, watching my Dad immobilized for fourteen years unable to communicate with us. As a family we gathered round him, and stronger together we dealt with the loss of a great man. But alone, I was weak, tortured by the why of it all. When he finally left us, my soul rejoiced in the freedom of his body and spirit. Although it was still hard to say goodbye, it was his time to leave us to fend for ourselves without the magnet of him to bond us together. And so we do. Perhaps for Mom, but mostly I believe because we all now see the frailty of life and how inconsequential pride and possession are to the human spirit.
I do believe there is a higher power, but not some sole king that determines our destiny or decides who, what, when and where. I do pray. I pray for my children’s health and safety. I pray for mothers and babes in wombs. I pray for people in need and families in sorrow. I pray for a peace within myself and that others may find peace too.
When I was young, I would pray to God; leaving everything in “his” hands. It brought me comfort then—still does from time to time when the load seems too heavy to bear—but didn’t necessarily bring me strength within myself, so I would fall asleep each night petitioning “him” out of fear and insecurity.
But one message that stuck with me from Sunday School is that we are created in the image of God. So with the authenticity of a child, I started praying in the mirror. It brought me the strength I longed for and over the years, and through my experiences, I’ve learned to cultivate that feeling of God within myself.
I’m not saying I’m God. I can’t perform miracles, unless you see miracles in being a mother, a good friend and the deep desire to love another human being unconditionally. I have limits. There are many things beyond my control. The ground we walk on has its own energy, I am unable to control that. What happens inside someone else’s soul that directs their path in this lifetime, is not my business. The only thing I can control is my reaction to the events around me.
After the tsunamis, Larry King brought a group of religious leaders together to help explain why; and where God was in all of this. The clear message they agreed on is that God isn’t in the event itself, God is in the response.
It’s easy to blame God when things go wrong and give credit where miracles exist. But it’s as hard for me to comprehend that some “one” is responsible for this as it is for me to look up to the stars on a dark night and wonder why we are even here to begin with. So I don’t.
I do teach my children to pray. For safety and health and those they care for. I also teach them to discover within themselves the goodness and love that can change the world. My theory is that prayer is thought and our thoughts create miracles every day.
What happens when we die? My faith in the power of spirit tells me there is more beyond this lifetime. In the mansion that is Heaven, with lockers and fresh towels by the gold-lined pool and angels feeding us cream-cheese on wheat-free crackers? Probably not, but we’ll be safe, touching those that need us. I believe souls can join together whenever we reach for them. Whether they are here now or separated by that fine line. I believe Liam is with Kate and Justin and Evan and Ben, and he will be, until they are ready and it’s time for his soul to move on. But Kate needs him still so he remains safe and sound within her.
But, I haven’t lost a child and I’m not asking for that lesson. So forgive me Kate if this doesn’t resonate with you, it’s just how I see things. It’s what gives me the strength to send strength to you.
And Thordora, I’ve haven’t watched my mother be taken away by cancer. However, I too, don’t remember a presence in the ER after my father died and we pawed over his body for what seemed like hours. But I do feel him when I need him, when I open up to the thought that we are all more connected than we think.
That’s what brings me comfort. Thought I’d share.
God, if you’re there, I haven’t forsaken you or my teachings, just choose to experience you in my own way. You represent love to me. I hope that’s ok.