Skeletons + love

Sometimes videos that go viral make you laugh. Others make you cry. Some just make you think. This one made me think and made me cry. If you have not seen it yet, the “skeleton video” as it is being called is one that promotes conversation about love and diversity. It is definitely one that is worth taking the time to watch. “One Love” by Macklemore in the background only encourages more emotion inside.

Be sure to check out the website behind the video: Love Has No Labels.

On Mothering

I do not really think about the idea of feeling mothered too often. Until a few weeks ago. I met a woman who calmed me. It was not anything she really did, but I wondered if the vibe she gave off was one of a “mother.” Random I know. This woman is slightly irrelevant to this post as I may never see her again, but the hour I spent with her began a chain of events in my thoughts over the course of the next few days. Mothers. Mothering. Lack of a mom. My mom passed away 20 years ago. I have lived more of my life without my mom then I did with her.

Yes there have always been individuals in my life that have “mothered” me in different ways. I have tears in my eyes as I remember the ones that had a lasting effect on me. And, while many of those that mothered me are not deeply present in my life today, they are still in some ways always present with me. I saw how they mothered their own children, how they loved me, or how they taught me to love. It is interesting for me to look back over those 20 years of the diverse mothering in my life.

Jump to today. I am a bit of a hard-core person. I go all into a project. Usually it is hard for me to stop until I am done. You know you can count on me, trust me, and that I will not let you down. But with being hard-core there is an intensity that I exude that sometimes is well: intense. This woman a few weeks ago calmed me for that hour. I have no idea why. I have no idea if I would like her, or if she would continue to have that effect on me. It makes me wonder about all my friends, family, and co-workers who have lost parents, siblings, friends, co-workers in their life. How do they continue to feel fathered, mothered, taken care of? Why did this women calm me?

Is it that I need more mothering in my life? Do I need to let go a bit and allow myself to be mothered? I guess it depends on what our definition of mothering truly is. Sometimes I think it is knowing that I could pick up the phone and cry, share of my day, or ask for advice. Other times it is to tell me that everything is going to be okay, or to tell me how proud she is of me. Whatever the definition, I imagine a good amount of us could use a bit more mothering in our life.

“Love You Forever”

I have spent a good part of my life taking care of other people, family members, and probably my favorite of all children. My favorite age is newborn, that are so cuddly, sleep so easily in your arms, and smell so good. (Well most of the time). However, I love the conversation and exploration that happens when you interact with toddlers and onward. The questions at times can get under your skin, and other days they say things that are so completely unexpected that they make you laugh so much you cry. Other times the words that come out of their mouths bring other sorts of tears.

Yesterday a Facebook friend shared this article “The Story Behind ‘Love You Forever’ Is Probably Not What You Thought.” Love You Forever is a children’s book written by Robert Munsch. Now let me tell you, over my 10 + years of marriage I have wanted to purchase baby items, and Chris has somehow won and halted this urge, which I understand. However, I started a bit of a collection of my favorite children’s books well before I met Chris. One on the bookshelf is, you guessed it: Love You Forever. Maybe it is the nostalgia of sometimes feeling like an orphan, or remembering childhood memories with my parents, but this book always brought tears to my eyes as I read it to wee little ones while babysitting, or while working at a day care center in college.

The article shares the true story about the background of this children’s book. You’ll want to read the article and watch the video, but know that it is a teary affair. I cried while reading this article based on not having my parents here to tell me they love me, and now to know that the words in the book actually speak to babies lost, makes it that much deeper. The song the mom sings in the book is:

“I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.”

For those of you that have lost babies, born or unborn, or even your grown babies, this book is for you. I even think it is for those that have lost their moms or dads, as a reminder that they are loved. You are loved.

Unexpected tears

I have said quite a few times on this blog that I am not a crier. I do not cry over normal things — a rough day or when I have been mistreated. No, for those days I rant. I stand up for myself, and I do what I can to make it better. When I do cry, the tears flow for what I cannot control. For moments that are no longer possible. I cry when I witness the human yearning for the physical touch between two people that is no longer possible, or for the experiences in my life that are no longer possible.

Yesterday someone at work asked the question of what recent movie or television show made us cry. It got me thinking.

My initial answer was the television show: Parenthood. I could not remember the most recent TV show or movie, and that was the first show that came to mind. There was an episode a few months ago, where the daughter from one family was going off to college. When her parents said goodbye at the airport, she acted like it was no big deal that she was leaving them, and walked off towards her gate. A few moments later she walks back and embraces her parents, and the moment I see them embrace I am bawling. It is a random moment of sobbing that I never expected, and the thought that comes to me: I never experienced my parents sending me off to college. My tears are from an experience I never had.

After thinking about all that, I remembered the exact show I most recently watched. It was a Showtime series that just ended called: The Big C. Yes, the show was about cancer. The main actress in the show is Laura Linney and because I like her so much I watched her show, even though it was about her having cancer. Yes, it was depressing at times, and yes the final few shows were very depressing, and yes I cried. I got to thinking though, in some ways the show is brilliant. Why you might ask? Because it was about reality. How many shows actually talk to you about what it might be like to go through having cancer?

For this show, Laura’s character has a son and she struggles with what it will be like for him if she dies. She struggles so much that she rents a storage unit and buys him a present for all his future birthdays (a car for his 21st, and many other great gifts for his other birthdays) and if she dies she wants him to have a key to the storage unit. Then one day near the end of the series she decides that she wants to see his face open each gift. She wants to experience each of those birthdays with him. So, yes, she takes them to the storage unit and they open his gifts together, laughing and crying together.

I cried, and cried, and cried watching that episode. I cried for the birthdays I did not have with my parents, I cried for my friends and coworkers who have lost their family and friends to cancer. I cried for the longing of losing someone. I cried for someone nearing death pondering what they will miss out on. And, I wonder, did others cry like I did when they watched this episode?

I am the unexpected crier. I cry at the strangest times, when emotion hits me strong, and I often do not cry when most might expect it. We are all wired differently and our deep triggers move something inside that open the flood gates and we are never the same.