October 13, 2010

30 Days of Truth Day 2: My Heart Bursts as My Blessings Abound

The prompt for Day 2 of 30 Days of Truth is to write about something you love about yourself.

Last night I read Loralee's post about Jill. She was asking for support for another mother, and I can see where her heart is. I have done the same from my readers at times.

This morning I held my 5 month old baby in my arms. I pressed my cheek to his warm, soft head and felt his

When I changed his diaper, I gently squeezed his fat thighs. I tickled his face with the corner of his burp cloth.

I listened to his chirps and goos and gas and talked and smiled with him. I watched his face light up when his 4 year old brother came into view.

My blessings abound.

I have never sat for 1 day in a hospital with my child, let alone spent 51 days next to him wondering if he would be there the next morning.

I have never felt the pain of considering a 24 inch casket.

I have never watched doctors try to revive my child, never seen my child with tubes coming from his nose and mouth, with wires attached to his chest.

I have never experienced the absolute agony that is the loss of my child, the death of a piece of my heart.

I have never had to cope with that while at the same time being attacked and blamed for causing the death of my child.

As I sit here now in front of my computer, I am near tears. My heart breaks and bursts. But I am so incredibly thankful for the feelings I am having right now.

I have a big heart. I read blogs, and I feel connected. I share in the pride when other mothers celebrate a triumph in a difficult area. I understand how hard it is when another woman steps on the scale and things have not gone as planned. I feel the frustration when people choose to be negative and mean instead of focusing on the positive. I feel a tiny fragment of the pain when someone's child is lost.

My capacity for love and caring for other people does not always make things easy. I have shared with you before about the way my past haunts me. The days I've spent all day thinking and praying for people who need it. The tears that I've cried for other mothers and families that I've never even met.

In these moments, I have seen God at work. I have seen the good in people and been reminded that it is so much more rewarding to have a big heart, to choose to lift people up and care. And I have been reminded, time and time again, how lucky I am.

Despite moments of discomfort, my ability to empathize, the way I throw myself wholeheartedly into letting myself care for other people in the world? This is something I absolutely love about myself. Because of this heart I carry in my chest, I am able to try and do good in the world. I see the light that can shine from inside, that can be passed from one person to another. I feel the warmth that can be created when people step up and say "We are human. We are one. We support one another."

Recently, I wrote about a dream I'd had that was incredibly intense and stuck with me all day. On that post, my Mom left this comment:

"That's the conundrum, isn't it? I believe it is impossible to lift others without putting your whole heart into it. The hard part is that it makes you vulnerable. If you know in your heart that you have helped someone in their life, then sometimes that has to be enough. In my experience, people get busy and the days go by fast. They mostly attend to what's directly in front of them and not much else. You're a really loving and sensitive person who has a drive to be of help to others. You put that energy into the world and it helps balance things toward the good side. Would you give that part of yourself up if it meant never being hurt by the obliviousness or insensitivity of others? I don't think you would or should. "

Although sometimes it causes me pain, my capacity for love, empathy & caring - my bursting heart - is something I would never give up.

For the other 29 days, click here.

The image above is a beautiful painting called Bursting Heart by Shirley Miller Lee, which I found at John Lee's website.

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