I write from my heart. I share glimpses of our lives that I want to encapsulate. Memories that I hope to recall through photos and words when my mind fails in the accuracy of precious details. I imagine that some may perceive my perspective as comparable to my heart birthing a procession of baby unicorns, releasing magical balloons, rainbows and buckets of glitter onto the earth – as baby cherubs join in song.
The thing is, in every single day, there are moments of stark beauty and joy. Those visions are what I am compelled to write about. Each blessing worthy of documenting moment by moment. I attend my daily mistakes, olympic level bambino meltdowns and struggles of motherhood in other ways. I consult a steadfast friend and move on. I don’t usually care to spend my time penning them here. The joys I see are what get me through the days, and are just as much a component of my journey as are the heaver aspects of life and mothering. But those blissful, star-filled, simple moments- well those are what I choose to hang on to. I am finally comfortable enough to say, that is just who I am.
Recently, something has been stopping me in my tracks.
I am a migraine sufferer. In between the stories I share I am frequently bedridden for two days, violently vomiting and struggling to put myself back together piece by piece. My migraines (first triggered in pregnancy) are not something that I can just plow through as they leave me completely incapacitated, and lately I have been struggling with managing them more than ever. Every month I look at the calendar afraid of what I am going to miss; fearful of the business that I will mess up for my husband and the burden of him having to do it all; terrified of not being there for my children. The avenues that used to help wax and wane now. The drugs aren’t always effective, and my monthly IV magnesium infusions don’t seem to offer what they once did.
Thankfully, I was present for Lucia’s first day of Kindergarten. I did miss her second, her first full day of school. Her first day of lining up in the school yard with all the other grades in the morning. Her visible disappointment masked in bravery for her mama was heartbreaking to witness as a mother. It was hard not to succumb to feeling of ” I let her down”, when I was still ill the following day and couldn’t attend her friends rainbow birthday party as promised.
I am not sharing this struggle to cue the violins or inspire a collective pity party. I am fortunate and lessons gleaned from my struggles are worthy of documenting and remembering.
Upon recovering from a migraine and its hangover, I always experience a profound level of gratitude- rooted in the very core of my being, vibrating through ever inch of my soul. A depth of gratitude that moves me to tears as I walk down the street, push a stroller, or simply am present with my family because I am well enough to do so. I always tell my daughter, “mama will get better” and the thing is, I do. I am cognizant of the fact that for some, however, that is not the case. I always have the opportunity to get better, and I have learned to be so thankful for that. The heavy roads that many families must endure, continually make me think: it was just a migraine.
I am digging deep to experience that true sense of gratitude without being first knocked down. I want to live each day in absolute appreciation for all that I have. I don’t want these moments of extreme clarity to appear only after being debilitated.
My four year old daughter helped me to realize recently that our lives are an aggregate of trillions of moments. I am not defined by worst days, my less than stellar parenting moments, nor my migraines. My family is not only hanging onto my days missed and I choose to believe in the opportunity that each new day brings. I am thankful for the total summation of the many moments that comprise our lives. The hardships that are counteracted by glimmering moments of living room dance performances, blanket forts, braiding hair, tucking love notes into lunch boxes, sewing projects, wild imaginations, baking cookies, family dance time, saying yes, messy art, singing in the car, fierce creativity, partnership in marriage, giggles, early morning family snuggles, wallowing in silly, taking chances, the I love you’s, and I’m sorry’s. Ferocious love.
The whole enchilada.
My daughter asked me questions about my sickness last week, but she spoke more of the magnificent rainbow party that she attended.
I am determined to fight as hard as I can to manage my migraines and live in the level of gratitude that they have given me. I am also going to follow my babies perspective because they speak of the rainbows.
They remember the rainbows- and I try my damnedest to capture them here.