CONNECTION, FAMILY, JOY, Lifestyle, LOVE, parenting, THE SELF, Uncategorized, WOMEN

Brutal vs Beautiful

I have barely had any sleep in four days. I usually fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow at night, but recently things have kept me awake – thoughts, and emotions, and plans and worries – future ones and present ones– real ones and imaginary ones – for sure. 

So there I am in the bathroom at 6 am. I’m knackered and exhausted, sleep-deprived, hair is a mess, wearing a milk-stained t-shirt from breastfeeding the baby, eyes still more closed than open. My three-year-old bouncing up and down in front of me: “Mummy, mummy, can I take this teddy-bear downstairs with me? Can I? Can I?” At that moment, some very sleep-deprived cells in my brain can’t take any of it anymore: “If you carry that teddy-bear downstairs with you, we need to throw away three others. I’m so tired – I don’t want to tidy and tidy and tidy anymore.” She stops bouncing and just stares at me. What? Wait. What did I just say? Where the heck did that come from? Keep that one – throw three others away?! Sweet lord! “I’m sorry baby,” I muster. “Of course you can take your teddy-bear downstairs. It’s yours. Mummy is just really tired,” I manage to say. Big hug. Faith restored. 

My babies crack me open – they break me physically, mentally and emotionally every single day, and I love them with a love deeper and truer than I have ever loved ever before: with a wide-open, unguarded heart. So scary! I didn’t see this pain and mess, and beauty and love coming, but it’s here, it’s real. Sometimes the love I feel inside my body is so overwhelming that it spills out all over my edges – it expands beyond my body and seems to solidify in front of my very eyes into a big fat heart-shaped balloon that is about to pop and sprinkle stardust all over the whole wide Universe. A balloon so gigantic I can’t wrap my arms around it. A feeling so vast that I can’t put it into words.

I pray to God every day that my grumpy teddy-bear murdering moments won’t break my tiny babies’ souls before they get a chance to fully explore the world with all its beauty and pain. That they won’t think that I’m the mum from hell or worse, that there is something wrong with them that might have made me snap. Then at the same time, I’m thinking, “well wait – your children, their hearts, their souls, are much more potent and capable than you could ever know – how dare you fathom that you could ever break infinite spirits and their infinite souls with a ridiculous comment like that.” I know. I’m instantaneously humbled. I know people are so so capable and resilient –  children all over the world have endured and are enduring famine, disease, wars, abuse, sometimes all at once, and they’ve survived. True, but people everywhere are also suffering from PTSD and need psychiatrists. So?! I’m still really torn.

There is always this tug at my heart – this desire to keep my babies warm and safe and whole – shielded from life’s horrors, tiny or real serious ones – and from “teddy-bear murdering me” mornings.

 I want to protect them and be real at the same time. I want to be sweet mum all the time and yet allow myself to have shitty mornings and show it. I want my children’s world to be just perfect, but I don’t want it to be too perfect at the same time either to prepare them for all of what is “out there” and yet to come. The world is a “brutiful” place says Glennon Doyle: beautiful and brutal. I want my children to see that at times this brutiful world breaks me with fatigue, with worry, with decisions – the ones I can take and the ones that are taken for me – with loss, with death, but that it rebuilds me too – us – with friendship, with love, with support, with a random smile. I don’t want to be accountable for my children’s welfare, and at the same time, I just love being accountable for their welfare. All those thoughts and emotions – all rolled into one. I’m trying to be the very best version of me, and I am failing at it every single day. And yet I keep trying – insanity. I would have quit any other project by now under those circumstances, but this one I keep sustaining with all my might. I guess that’s what real love does. It keeps whispering into your ear to try and try again because it’s worth it. After all, you care. It makes you want to keep trying and trying and trying even if you know that you’ll always fall short – mostly falling short of the expectations you had of yourself. And actually, you know that in the end, it doesn’t really matter if you are your very best version or just any decent version of you, because this you that you are is the you that your children call mummy.

Glennon Doyle wrote something along the lines of “as long as you are in there battling, you are doing this living right.” The ones with no heart-break are already numb and dead. Well, seen from that perspective, I’m mightily alive with all those badass emotions and thoughts keeping me awake at night. I guess what I’m trying to say is that this tug at my heart and this inner back and forth leave me with no clue when it comes to being a mum – when it comes to being a wife, a friend, a daughter, a teacher, a woman, … – any and all of what makes me me, really. I’m taking one moment, one emotion, at a time and see where it will lead me – all of us, as individuals and as a family. That’s all there is to it really.

And those are the thoughts swirling around in my head at 6 am after 20 minutes of sleep all night – no coffee yet. “Damn, I can’t have a cup of real coffee, see: breastfeeding.” Fuck that. Break those parenting rules. I’ll have my cup of coffee—just one. So here’s to all the milk-stained mummies out there, to all the ones trying to be their very best – mummy or not – for the ones they love – failing and trying and failing all over again, to great books that keep you sane in the middle of the night and to friends who laugh at your text messages, also in the middle of the night, when irrational worries keep you awake, and you can’t fall asleep.

love, Linda.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Share on print
BEGINNING, CONNECTION, FAMILY, JOY, NEW PROJECTS, THE SELF, WISDOM

ARE YOU FINALLY HAPPY NOW?

’Are you finally happy now?”

In response to my post about finding my dad, after I had been looking for him for over 30 years, someone asked me “so, are you finally happy now?”

At first, I was taken a bit aback – are you finally happy now? – it sounded almost like a reproach, although I know it wasn’t meant to be.

After my initial response, I chose to allow the answer to that question to find me – am I fully happy now? Yes and no. And that is the truth – my truth right now.

Yes, hell yes – I am happy to get to know my father, to pick his brain and to discover and uncover who he really is and what he has gone through and experienced all those years – with me, when I was little, and without me, all those years leading up to now.

So yes, that part of our story does make me incredibly happy.

But, there is a “but” – there is a reason why my dad hadn’t been part of my life for such a long time and there are a lot of facts and realities I need to come to terms with right now. Truths that hurt.

For one, I want to point out that there will never be that one magical event that will make a person instantly happy – you might glow from within for longer periods of time during the day, or weeks, or years, because a vital spark within has been rekindled by that sudden turn of events, but a person’s overall wellbeing and happiness comes down to so much more – we have families, friends, jobs, and so many more factors that make up our identity – so a sense of genuine calm and serenity in all those areas is what contributes to an individual’s overall happiness. It’s not “the one life-changing incident” that turns you into a glittering happiness mirror ball over night. People would rather think you have gone mental if it did ☺️🙃

So, “am I finally happy now?” – spending time with my father and being able to gather the missing pieces of the puzzle has certainly contributed to me finding my place in this world and consequently allowed me to access and retrieve a significant amount of childlike happiness and wonder that had been hidden away for so long – but –

– but having to face the circumstances and events related to our story has also been unsettling on so many levels and in so many ways. That’s where the “there is still room for happiness improvement” comes in – That’s why my – our – journey doesn’t end here ☺️ I believe a new chapter has only just begun 🥰

– allowing and accepting the glorious and the painful and dealing with the pieces of the puzzle one bit at a time ❣️☺️

“choosing to remember the love instead.” ❣️

(kyle gray).

Understand that as you sit here right now, no one has ever thought what you are thinking. No one has ever occupied the space you occupy. Really try to comprehend what philosophers call “the existential aloneness”—that you are alone in the universe, and you must experience that aloneness in such a way that you never allow yourself to feel down or depressed by it. Nobody can ever get behind your eyeballs and feel what you feel and experience what you experience, except for you. You can be in a room full of people and still be alone. You could be making love to the person you adore more than anything in the world, and you’re still alone. You are always experiencing things in your own unique and special way. In all of time, no one can ever get to an understanding of themselves, of the universe, of what it means to be a no-limit person, unless they get to this point called inner peace—and that is something you can never obtain but can only feel inside. Learning to tune in to your own specialness and consult your inner signals will help point the way to lasting and genuine success.

Dyer, Wayne W.. Happiness Is the Way (pp. 81-82). Hay House. Kindle Edition.

FAMILY, parenting, THE SELF

Screen Shot 2018-10-14 at 20.44.28