Letter to my son (Dear Son)

Dear child of mine,

yet again my love for you overwhelms me. Yet again your eyes enlighten me. Yet again your smile and every breath you take inspire me to be…

To be.

I have never known a better sense of self and identity before you. And as you lay before me I realise I had no life before you. I realise that before made no sense until I had to be, for you.

I feel like there is a power greater than my own and it keeps me going. I feel like there is a borrowed strength passing through me and I lean on it effortlessly. And as I lean yet again, I am shown the hardest path, but I walk on it easily.

Today you hurt yourself as any child would when he learns to walk. As I merely approached, you put your arms towards me, you knew that I was coming for you. How did you know? How do you know? How do you caress my heart sometimes and breathe? Who told you that my heart was heavy? How do you lock eyes with me and smile on purpose when you see me pensive. How do you carry the sun in your gaze and shine light on me? Who told you that my soul was lonely?

Anyone who knows me knows that I write. Anyone who knows me knows that I write only when I’m inspired by the good, by the bad. Not so long ago I used to write whenever I felt deep sadness but I did it in such a way that no one who did not know me would know. Anyone who knows me now knows that my new inspiration stems from pure love no matter how hard it may be. 

Child, I pray you keep inspiring me as you do now. I especially pray that I will somehow inspire you to be a man of honour, a man who helps and a man who shares. I pray that I will inspire you to be a man who loves even more so than I love you.

Your mommy,

Flying Fish

A journey of self discovery from the scaly world.

It’s like I’ve been swimming above water, holding my breath.

Everything seems to be so far away, yet so close….

Am I flying? I’m not sure where I am. All I can see is movement. Colours. All I can hear is the crashing sound of the waves.

And the rain.

Suddenly I am not alone. I can feel their presence jumping as if they are telling me to stay afloat.

They push me and push me and push me… I’m scared.

Now I’m beginning to blame myself. Perhaps I should have stayed right where I was, and continued thinking that the world above was exactly what they said it was: cold and empty.

“If you jump you will die”, they said.

“If you stand out, they will catch you”, they said.

“Conform”.

“Follow”.

“Don’t think”, they said.

Should I thank you, God, for giving me wings? They gave me hope, they made me fly and for an instant I felt so free.

Then I’d plunge back in and think that next time, I would fly higher. I’d stay above longer. In school that’s how it goes anyway.

I always had this feeling like I didn’t belong. I was neither here nor there.

Neither was I able to choose. Air or water? I need more time.

I can hardly breathe now and the rain is falling.

I can hardly move now and my heart is dying.

A net is holding my life.

I cannot move and yet they call me: Flying Fish.

COVID-19 (How I got over Corona)

As this era reigns with a global pandemic, natural disasters, wars, and lots of people dying, it really seems like a chapter out of the revelations in the Bible. Every time you turn on your TV there is something horrible happening. Actually, this was always the case but lately, with the Corona virus crisis, it no longer seems distant. You are bound to know someone directly, or someone who knows someone who is affected by the virus.

On Thursday, March 12th 2020 we heard that the virus had officially impacted Belgium and that we may have to work from home the next day and test our equipment to ensure it worked, should we have had to stay home indefinitely. On March 13th, the government explained that we were officially on confinement, closing all social places such as bars, restaurants, theatres, etc. as well as all non food stores. Only businesses deemed essential such as supermarkets, pharmacies and medical places would be open. Goodbye plans to buy new trousers for work. Hello no bra, no makeup and bad hair days!

This meant that I had to rethink the way I did my work, learn to prioritise even more and especially balance my work with motherhood because, oh yeah, schools are closed as well until further notice.

Did I mention I’m a mom? Well I am, to a lovely stepdaughter and a 4 year old boy. For a few weeks I grew more and more guilty because I could not focus all my attention on work, nor could I focus it all on the children. You don’t want the kids to miss out on a school year because you’re not equipped to get their attention for more than 20 minutes! The alphabet is not going to learn itself! So, between the breaks that weren’t breaks because I use them to cook and make sure the kids eat, between the laundry, the dishes and aaaall the emails, it was becoming very emotionally draining.

After a few weeks I realised I had to change my outlook on things. I stopped getting frustrated when my son wouldn’t count from 1 to 10. I’d put on Netflix, preferably in English (he learns french at school), preferably something that makes him learn lots of things without him realising it. I’ll get my stepdaughter to write or draw and I’ll look around and be GRATEFUL. Gratefulness is such a peaceful state of mind! Just stop and think: Do you have food? Do you have shelter? Do you have love, even through virtual distance? If you answered yes to all these questions, then you will be fine!

While I was working from home, my partner who works in an elderly home in maintenance (can’t do it behind a computer at home) had to keep going to work. I’m guessing he must have carried the virus on him because I eventually caught it. Or should I say it caught me. I had been home for a few weeks so the only places where I could have been exposed were at the supermarket (the two occasions I went), or at home with my partner. Turns out there had been lots of cases, and deaths, at his workplace because they are generally not planning on saving the elderly but rather let the the situation pass as comfortably as possible.

I had been feeling muscle pains, mostly in my legs and didn’t think anything of it until I became generally very tired and a little short of breath for simple things. And then muscle pain in my entire body. I still didn’t think anything of it until I felt chills and dizziness even though I was sitting down. Then I woke up with a congested nose and thought, let’s give my doctor a call. At this point, no doctors are seeing patients face to face unless absolutely necessary, so consultations are done via the phone or video conference. Told him everything I was feeling, he asked if I had been exposed. I told him I didn’t think so, but my partner might be exposed at work. He confirmed the cases at the elderly home and told me he was sure it was the virus, ruling out the common flu or cold because I had already been home for 3 weeks and no one around me had symptoms of anything else. At the moment, they are keeping tests for people who are in a really bad shape, so impossible to get one, but I am making sure I obey the quarantine rules nonetheless.

The fear was not so much that I would get ill and die because I’m generally in good health. And they do say if you are in good health that the common flu might be worse than this. But mostly, the fear was that I might pass it on to the children or to someone who is much more at risk.

Overtime I started feeling much worse, especially pain in my sinuses, feeling like my head was going to explode. Simply going to the toilet or going downstairs made me short of breath but I could otherwise still function, more or less.

After about 6 days my temperature had gone back to normal. The muscle pain was gone. My sinuses gradually became decongested with time and vicks inhalations. I still have about 3 days of quarantine but I feel recovered already!

If you believe you have the virus it is important that you isolate yourself as much as possible from your family. Although with small children it is nearly impossible. You still have to bathe and feed them. Do not feel guilty for not being able to get away, do not feel guilty for getting sick because you were careful: this is a new thing nobody really knows how to fight. You are doing the best you can given your emotional and financial support. You are doing good.

In this time it is important to keep a spiritual connection with higher forces, whichever they may be for you. There is something bigger than us. Tune out of anything external filling you with guilt, doubt and fear. Take some deep breath. This too shall pass….

Letter to my son (one of MANY)

Dear Son,

I like to lean over you when you are sleeping to whisper in your ear and tell you that mama loves you. I always ask, gently in your ear, still softly like a watery murmur at the seep of a spring transforming slowly into a powerful river: 

You love mama?

You nod.

You nod…

Every

Time

And I wonder: Do you see me in your dreams holding you in a tight embrace and asking you for reassurance on your love for me? Do you know how much, in that moment, your head moving moves me?

Or do I interrupt one of your many nightly adventures climbing and conquering the world with my trembling voice?

I will never know.

But your quick nod, even as your mind flows into another world, shows no hesitation.

Sometimes, you even say it to me with your eyes kept shut and your slow inhalations. Those are my most peaceful nights where I know that if I do not wake, your words would stay with me forever.

And every night, I will whisper that I love you.

I love you

I love you

I love you

Mama

Who is writing?

I’m human at best. Using this platform to share and transform words into journeys of love, even when it was not initially planted. Growing in different parts of the world and with different backgrounds, I want to use every bit of good from everywhere as fertiliser for my personal growth, emotional growth and spiritual connections.

Being of multiple backgrounds helps give me perspective, with no judgement (or as little as I can have) especially as it relates to being a mother which you will find helps shape the way I write.

I hope you will find in my posts that in some or many ways, you are not alone. And perhaps I can help put words into what many of us are already feeling.

I look forward to embarking in this with you, discovering new realms of my mind by your side.