Once upon a time I heard that life carves deep ravines in you by way of pain so that one day you can be deeply filled with love. Over the years I have changed so much but never as much as I did at the 22nd year of my life. One day in said year, I decided to get breast implant surgery because I had reached the peak of unhappiness with my lack of shape. Not graced with any hip curves or big breasts or an ample backside (these had somehow been programmed to be part of "the ideal woman" in my psyche) I set out to do something about it. When I woke up from that procedure and the general anesthesia began to wear off, I looked around me and knew my life had changed forever. I even said out loud to the nurse attending me, "Something is different" and that statement had nothing to do with the two new mounds jotting out from my chest. I felt different in every way.
I got home and began a tremendous healing process. One that took a month, or a few years, or one that goes on today, depending on who you ask. My poles had shifted. I had gotten the breasts I had always longed for but I no longer really wanted them. I stayed home for a month in pajamas, with waves after relentless waves of panic attacks pounding me; I quit my job; quit some friends; I began to lose my self. Suddenly I turned the dial off on so many things that were relevant to me while perceiving enormous amounts of new things that weren't really new but new to my eyes that now could SEE. I had glimpses of discomfort such as this growing up- slight panic attacks in my bed at different times growing up while I was in bed at night with my eyes closed whiletrying to understand the meaning and the scope of the infinite. But all of this... this was a point of no return.
If memory serves me correctly (which sometimes it doesn't now approaching forty), the change was more of an internal conflict at first. I grappled with anxiety and depression for a long time, mostly in silence. I would find myself keeled over in the fetal position many nights trying to salvage whatever dignity or shred of self-esteem I could hold on to. After that initial month of major consciousness shifting post-surgery, I found meditation and yoga and they would be the life preserver that would bring me back to shore time and time again throughout the course of my life.
Then I met a man who finished the process of turning the rock into a shining crazy diamond. He was the first man I ever felt something beyond words for but he was lukewarm for me, at best. The process of loving him was one I never regret even though it stung badly at the time because it completely turned all the lights on inside the house. He was the spark that ignited a unique inner fire I had not yet acquainted myself with. Through his lack of attention, he helped me find my feminist, my intellectual, a deeper insight into my rebelliousness, my inner guru, and my self-love. After him, I spent the better part of five years alone to gather myself, recuperate, go inside and find out what was in there, and what it was that I wanted to express out there.
Then I met my husband. Who- besides being the most incredible and awakened soul on the planet- was the perfect person to receive the ME that had emerged from all the breakdowns and time up on the lift. Before him, I ended up at the door of every next man bruised and broken and desperate for repair. But when I met him, full of self-knowledge, love, and awareness, I knew taking time for myself was the right thing to do and that whatever I had done during that time to discover myself was so, soooo good because this man would not share his life, his heart, his truth with just anyone.
Then we had our children.
When I was pregnant with my first child, I had no idea what labor and birth would be like. I thought it might hurt. Hahahahahaha. Then when I found myself in the final pushes before her birth, when I thought I just couldn't anymore and thought I may have to ask for drugs or a hospital, I felt the soul of Everywoman permeate the room and I was transported to a place where every single woman that ever lived, lives, and will ever live were holding hands, forming a circle around me, and swaying side to side chanting a soothing song and infusing me with a strength that beamed out from their hearts and wombs that I never knew I had. Then, one more push and our first little was born to us and to herself Earth side. That was another moment I knew I would never return to whatever was before that moment. And then my midwife put her on my chest...
And then I knew that every ravine was overflowing with love and joy and many things words could not express.
And I knew that I had always been okay. No, more than okay... I had always been good. And enough. And more than enough, actually.
My crazy life played back in my mind- all the drinking, heartbreaks, friends lost, experiments, regrets, successes, mistakes, what ifs, trips, music, laughter, tears. It was all good because I was now holding this tiny beautiful piece of the universe that had grown into a little person in my womb in my arms and she was suckling at my breast.
I felt the exact same thing when my son was born. And again when my second son was born in the same way as his brother and sister, in a warm pool of water in our home, surrounded by our loving midwives.
Now my first little one is of school age. She made me a necklace with her little thumbprint on it. I wore it all day today and I recalled the time, before life had carved all this space to carry and love these immense souls, when I would have preferred shiny, expensive jewelry over a piece of handmade clay with a thumbprint on it.
I feel so full and happy.
Happy Mother's Day to every mother on Earth.