we wake to dreaming as parents. there is peace, there is wonder and work, there is a sense of the symbolic, the watching ourselves from above, the fear and twists that encircle us without warning. when we have kids everything feels so physical and present. our life is about their details. before mine were part of me, i was looking at the world through a screen. and now it is all so clear, luminous, and full of darkness ready to fall. just listening to them in the past few days, with eyes closed, feels like tiny pinpricks of joy and pain, if simply because they are here. i can feel their heat and smell their sweetness. i want to make a soft bed for everything they will feel, yet i want the world to be open like a flower, ready to take them in, teach them all of its secrets and stories. some days, in these days, i am so confused about how to do either, let alone both. we wade through cloudy waters, wait for the tides, hold tiny hands, and build the best rafts we can.
they have careful names, given to them with love and imagination, like all of the other kids of the world. light will find them, like a magnet to their own, from within, and sadly so will the shadows. i think so much about growing little souls who are brave, who fight for the good, who know how to hear their own hearts, that the sword hanging above our heads feels like an illusion. i think we know terror most intimately when love is fierce. i see their peace, i feel it like silky flour through my hands, it leaves me remembering our days with the haze of a dream. and a veil of love. somehow the net we weave and throw out is made of something close and familiar and strong. knowing love is universal. my kids are your kids. their kids are our kids. we are a living, breathing, loving force that feeds their hearts and protects the air around them. but when it fails, when we fail, we lose our orbits, we spin in pain and confusion. my babies are my gravity. their stories are my truth.
the way we love our children should be like a prayer to the ones we have lost. in tragedy, in peril, in the kind of darkness in which we feel emptied out, the love remains. the love will carry the ache through to the light. every child is made up of countless frozen moments, breathing after each blink, every one with a heartbeat, laced with our own pulses, woven like gold into our memory. so let us feel the weight, but lift the heaviness, so that we can think and feel and act for them, with every bit of care and clarity and love we own. they deserve our attention, in the tiny miracle moments that add up to their stories, in their growing pains, in the times they cry out for us, in the times they push us away. we all need each other.