“I don’t want you to feel alone.”, he says. And a contradiction spins between my ears and barely skips past my tongue, “But I am…and I’m not. I’m alone and never alone. They are always with me. But I also feel alone in this.”
Through the day they are right by my side or held in tired arms. They wake me in the night. I’m never alone. Not even for a moment.
Morning, noon, and night. It is a never ending job with a constant presence. And yet, I count down the hours until he comes home. I long for his company. I grasp for his helping hand, sweet kisses, and fully grown conversation.
From the smell of morning coffee to the sound of a lullaby playing- I tow the line. I long for companionship even as my arms ache from all that they hold.
Motherhood is the daily work of constant presence that can make you feel like an island.
The days and nights have been a challenge lately. With a baby crying from a mouth in constant pain. And the education and emotion of a small boy to balance.
I recall in the midst of rubbing lavender oil and whispering “I love you so…” that when my sweet Ezra was around this age, divorce papers were being finalized. Cutting teeth and bitter words were taking their stab at us both. Uncertainty and an aching heart stretched over many miles. And by only a heavenly grace did air fill my lungs. Only mercy kept my feet marching. It was the hardest. It was the loneliest.
But I wasn’t alone then. And I’m not alone now.
Time will march onward. These babies will grow. One day the loneliness will actually be the silent kind.
I’ll hold them now. I’ll listen to every word. It will make me weary. But it will also be the shine of joy in my years. I won’t be alone. Not for a moment.
Every minute my name will be called and small arms will reach to hold me. I’ll run my fingers through my hair and long for a moment of nothing but wind on my face. And yet, when I watch them sleep, my heart will break right in two. I see the beautiful ache of life that holds conflicting emotions- a tug of war in the heart. The time I’ll never get back again is slipping right through my fingers. I curse at its cruelty and beg for a chance to breathe at the same time. It is the strangest dichotomy of this chapter. I want it all to stay suspended in time that can’t melt. Yet plead for an hour to collect my mind. It’s all true at the same time. That longing for space and the loneliness lie together. That pleading to freeze them in this state- my babies forever- and a need for breath.
It’s all true at the same time.
Alone. But not. Not even for a moment.
A full heart breaking.