Friday, April 16, 2010

Beautiful, Intense, and Amazing

This is how I think of my second birthing experience. This is also how I think of its result. Demetrius (Dema), my second born turned six today. Six years ago I had a life altering experience. Yes, every birth is life altering. The family is changed forever and a new life emerges into the world. The world full of human beings. A world, possibly, over full of human beings. It is extremely significant and awesomely insignificant depending on if you look at the macro or micro level. Just the same, a change. Life is altered.

With Dema, my life was altered in profound ways that I still do not quite understand. I didn't know it at the time, but the timing of his birth both in season (Spring) and time of day (early morning) was telling. More so than anything or anyone else in my life, Dema has made me look at myself. Sometimes I do not enjoy what I see. Sometimes is hard and painful. Sometimes it makes me so happy that my heart breaks from joy. When I see him touch other people when he doesn't even try, it shocks and amazes me.

His intensity is not easy for me and it showed itself at an early age. He was a super easy baby. He has always been a great sleeper. I could take him anywhere and everywhere. I just wore him in a carrier and he was happy. However, when he did get upset, he would crawl under the bed and was inconsolable for a few minutes. We thought it was funny at the time because he would crawl out all better and ready for the cuddling that he loved/loves so much, but now after knowing him for six years, I see how his strong feelings, be it love or frustration or happiness or pain, can be tough for me. Tough, but oh so necessary. I have been "born again" through my life with Dema. Birth is beautiful, birth is amazing, and for me it has always worked best if I just went with it. I have never had a problem doing this when birthing a child. The ebbs and flows of contractions is like riding a wave or powerful moving music. I give in to natural process and enjoy the ride. It is spiritual. Not so much with my birthing into a new person. I fight it and whine that I can't do it. I scream and beg for the drugs. Why I can't use the same peace and calm and inner power I tap into when I actually give birth, I don't know. Maybe I need something hard and dirty to wake me up and make me take a good hard look at myself and my life.

Rob and I joke that Dema is the canary in the coal mine of our family. When things are not right with him, it is a symptom that things are amiss with us. He is empathic and sensitive in ways that I will probably never understand. He questions everything and is always searching for answers. He always wants to go deeper. It can be endearing and infuriating depending on the topic and the day. I somethings feel like I connect to him and other times I feel like I lack the grace to be his mother.

The birthing process isn't done. I still fight it as Dema brings me kicking and screaming into my new self. I thank him for his courage, his insight, his complete honesty, his raw and real way of living. I hope one day I have the strength and the nerve to be with him in the moment, but I am not quite there yet. His spirit burns way too hot and it still touches long buried nerves which were formed before he was. I find myself too frightened to look at him directly, as one avoids looking at the sun.

Dema, brings out strong emotions in people. He is like cilantro. You either love him or you have trouble liking him. Believe me, I have been on both sides of this myself. He is fiercely loyal and often I feel like I don't deserve him. He needs a mother who is up to his challenge. Yet here I am. I birthed him at home into my own hands. We are forever connected. Even death will not break the tie that binds us to each other other.

Dema, I am so glad I've had you in my life for six years. Please keep pushing the envelope. Keep asking the hard questions. Keep saying what needs to be said. Keep your intense determination. Keep taking the risks that make life worth living. Keep enjoying the speed. Keep being you. I promise, I will try to catch up even when it feels like I'm going to die from the effort. Keep your faith in me, my overwhelming complex sweet love.


The Voracious Vegan said...

You are amazing. I wish everyone was lucky enough to have a mother as sensitive, tuned in, and compassionate as you. This post was heartbreaking in its sweetness and sincerity. I hope you let your sweet Dema read it someday, what a wonderful birthday message for your beautiful son.

Rob said...

Linda that was a great post about Dema and you/us. I am lucky to have both of you in my life.

Crystal said...

Hi Linda,

I've been out of the blogging world for a while and am slowly getting back into the swing of things. It was nice to take a break but I found I just couldn't stay away from all the sweet people I've "met" (including you).

I've always enjoyed reading about your children. The way you and Rob are raising them is so inspirational. I remember the first post I read on your blog was Josie's birth and I thought you were such a strong and remarkable woman. If I were to ever change my mind about having kids it would likely be because of something you said.

Crystal (Vivacious Vegan)

VeganLinda said...

Voracious Vegan,

Thanks so much for your kind words! I have thought about you a lot lately and your furry son, Volvo. He is lucky to have the two of you and it sounds like you are making him as comfortable as possible. Strength to you during this difficult time.

Rob, I love you!

Crystal, I am so excited that you are blogging again! I didn't know you were back. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. It means a lot to me. I can't wait to check out your new blog.

Carissa said...

What an amazing post my friend! Dema is a treasure. I love your sharing this!
I am so sorry we missed the birthday party. We were visiting my sister and her family in Austin. We would love to do something special with you all in celebration of Dema's birth. Let me know if you all are free sometime soon. XO, Carissa