I wrote the following post 4 years ago before knowing how deeply my family would be affected by addiction and therefore how important connection, and the joy of memories would become.
It was soon after, that I began my deep dive into studying addiction. Little did I know the changes that would come and how much more “raw and isolated” I would become. At the time, I was very grateful for my relationship with my 2 older kids and my entire family. We were all doing relatively great but the seeds of despair had already started to show glimpses of discontentment.
Several studies have linked lack of connection to many struggles including suicide, depression, addiction, mental illness, self harm, job dissatisfaction & even the mass shooters in the news.
This lack of connection can be with community, self, family, a partner, a higher Divinity or society in general.
This winter has left me feeling very raw & isolated. Not due to the weather, but rather with some shadowy streaks of fear rising up. Fear related to instability & unsurity, lonliness, & the pressure to achieve certain results.
Normally, throughout our lives, when this turmoil arises in our belly; we have that go-to person in the form of a partner, a grown child, or our parents. That person validates our emotions and helps us find our center.
Sometimes this person is male. For the last 2 1/2 years, I have developed absolute respect for the men in our lives who carry so much weight. They are the pillars. Our strength. Our ‘please open this jar’ go-to people. They know the buck stops with them for the next house payment and electric bill to be paid.
They have to think if their child needs more medical care or higher college costs all while trying to be competitive & skilled in their career PLUS keeping the women and children safe & happy.
Until you lose that support it’s easy to take it for granted how much we all rely on each other.
Single moms know it, disabled people know it, parents of sick children know it, & people who’s parents have died know it.
In my journey of feeling loved, safe & finding joy, I’ve missed the listening ear of my parents tremendously. Even though they’ve been gone 11 years this year, it still leaves a big hole in your life.
My mom & I would sit & talk on the phone for hours. Sometimes saying absolutely nothing for minutes at a time! Can you imagine that today, in this busy world?
My 2 older kids are my phone pals now. They will lovingly talk to me for hours at a time. They always seem to bring me back to source, back to reality, back to Love. ❣️
I have become so incredibly close to those 2 humans the last year that it’s crazy. So grateful for them 💙💘
My point of this post on this international women’s day is to love on everyone around you today. The effort people in your life make just to keep themselves running & everything else humming is amazing. As a nurse, when someone has a stroke or a devastating illness, I see firsthand the amount of work it takes to keep one human functioning.
Look at what Mom’s do! Every day they keep families, husbands, households, jobs, cars & yards running in functional & beautiful order!!!
Hug your parents & kids today💝
Tell them what you notice about how they try to make things better. For themselves or others. Tomorrow they could be gone in an instant.
Thank you to my kids, their beautiful partners, & anyone who helps them be a higher version of their selves.
I’m incredibly grateful to all of you.
Facebook memories like this can evoke feelings of sadness. The loss that’s felt when a child veers away from the family. The parents who have suffered permanent physical loss know this sadness well. Facebook even has a filter which you can say I don’t want to see memories from this person or place or time.
But who wants to erase the feeling of better times?
Who wants to forget about joy?
Joy transcends. From a child’s smile to the fresh whiff of a newborn baby’s smell. From a steaming cup of coffee to the first buds of spring -revealed through the tiny tulip bulbs peeking up through the semi-frozen ground.
Joy washes over us in waves. Sometimes the waves are noticeable like the tingling butterflies we feel with a new love. Other times we are so busy in the moment that we don’t realize how precious and valuable they are until many months or years after.
As we dig deeper into our feelings during challenging times; its easy to get caught up in the sadness. The trick is to take the beauty of sadness and marinate it with the precious memories we cherish of our child. Then we can turn our pain into deep compassion and love. Compassion for ourselves. For all you’ve experienced. For the journey of a thousand miles of a momma who cares. A momma who just wants her precious family back. A momma who did the best she could with under suspicious and vicious odds.
A momma full of love. Full of memories. Full of joy.
The joy of love.
The love of joy.