“And, when you can’t go back, you have to worry only about the best way of moving forward.” Paulo Coehlo, The Alchemist
Nineteen years ago, my life changed forever. After 40 weeks, 2 days, a not too difficult labor, aided by my doctor and a nurse I will never forget named Jenny, hope and dreams were born in the form of a 10 lb. 3 oz bundle.
We spent many wonderful days together in the early years, bonding in that special way that mothers bond with their first-born. Everything was new for both of us, and I understood a smidge of what the unconditional love of God was all about.
Thinking about my eldest and his birthday makes me enormously proud and happy. But I am also a bit sad, and not for the usual “my kids are getting older, so I must be old, where has the time gone?” kind of reasons.
Because the pain of regret sometimes so tinges my love for my eldest that I can scarcely breathe. So wishing that I had done some things differently, followed my instincts as a mama instead of what others told me I should do. Wishing I had moved our family into stability sooner. Set better boundaries for all of us. Helped make his path straighter and removed some of the obstacles.
Part of me knows that I did the best that I could at the time, but honestly that doesn’t really help. Because I could have done soooooooo much better. I am working on letting go of the guilt, but I have to say the process is much harder than it sounds. But I know that I will get there someday.
In spite of my mistakes, he is an amazing person and I am fortunate that we have a special and close relationship. He has the heart of a philosopher wrapped up in a love of music, words, and people. He loves science and art and having interesting conversations about all kinds of topics. He is fiercely independent and a more than a bit stubborn.
And we LOVE him though he is too far from us and we miss him like crazy.
Happy Birthday, eldest, wonderful, son. The day you came into my life was the most magical of all because you made me a mother. And I am beyond grateful that I was chosen to be your mother.
Today I wish for you so very much. But more than anything I pray that you would find that dream that lies within the soil of your own beautiful heart and embrace it. Follow it. Love yourself and those around you. Hold onto what is good, and learn from the bad. And know without a doubt that you are loved wildly, wholly, and unconditionally.
“This is what we call love. When you are loved, you can do anything in creation. When you are loved, there’s no need at all to understand what’s happening, because everything happens within you.” ~Paulo Coehlo, The Alchemist