Pre-Dawn Birthday Thoughts

early morning
still dark
birds begin
sound of crickets
an occasional insect
taps against the lamplit window
geckos laugh in the kitchen
coffee cools on the coaster
refrigerator hums
feet are bare
at 5am
I feel like shedding this nightgown

today marks the passage
41 years
of circling the sun
spinning upon this earthen sphere
as human
footsteps transporting
this body of cells
manifest as woman

I have breathed through these lungs
for four decades
trying to learn
and live
the love

last year
Fabulous 40
was just off-center
I did not feel fabulous
just funny

41 needs no fanfare
no heavy expectations here
just dinner
at a favorite restaurant
the table by the fountain
one friend, my husband, and my son
please no birthday songs
and a slice of green tea ice cream cake
well, that would be divine

today I’ll do a little bit of everything
keep trying to remember
presence
all these years I’ve been practicing
this pace
this existence
this experience of humanness in 3D form

pen to paper
fingers to keys
keys in the ignition
lips pressed to a cup rim
hands rinsing under water at the sink
inhaling oxygen
with all these trees
sharing air with ladybugs
hair moving in a breeze

I’ve been collecting
all of these moments
on the inside
where I can’t see
on the outside
shown as lines
freckles on my skin

all accumulated data
compiling to conclusions
and thus far
I think it best to rest

I know
nothing
I’ll say
thank you
keep remembering
the Love

photo courtesy of Crispin Semmens
photo courtesy of Crispin Semmens

Crowning

It’s 5:28am and today marks Jeb’s official eighth birthday. His excitement will rouse him from bed early, I’m sure, which means there’s not much time here for me to wax poetic on that auspicious day eight years ago.

Besides, I’ve written about it before. Various versions, that is, as there are always more than one perspective on an event, especially one like birth.

Last year produced two accounts. “At the Threshold” (which my dad said was a bit hard to read) and “Getting the Darkness” which was a combination of heartbreak and spiritual crisis.

Ok, ok. So where’s the joy? The story of the miracle of birth? It’s actually all part of the tale, just complexly woven in, like most things in life. But yes, my journey through motherhood, beginning on the day the pregnancy test strip went pink, has not been all white in a world of b and w. There have been shadows of blackness. Definite greys.

But there, too, have been crowning moments of exhalation.

Playing with the verb (the majority of my birth experience was with Jeb’s head just short of crowning but not fully coming out into the world) I thought I’d gift both Jeb and myself with an honorary crown today. Acknowledgement of the Divine Yoga we experienced together on December 5, 2003. That we lived. And continue to live this life together. Learning, growing, loving through all of the whites and blacks and greys of in-between.

We are royal in our efforts. Regal in our path as mother and son in a vast world of shadowed doorways and opening skies.

courtesy of Jeb ~ all rights reserved

This morning I come across this featured photo. Taken by Jeb when he was six years old. I love his photographs because I get to see the world through his eyes.

The location, Polihale. Roughly translated as “the house of the dead”, where it is said that all human souls make a final pass through the earth plane before going on to the spirit world.

With a theme of the full spectrum of black to white, it seems fitting to include a rainbow. A burst of color and sunlight among the shadows in the place where life meets death. To feature the house of the dead on my son’s birthday. Mix all of these symbols and metaphors into one big potpourri of Everything.

This is Life, I think. All of it.

I’m still learning.
We are still living.
Maybe we are all still being born.
Crowning.