The Joys of Mamahood

These two little ones are like magnets. They cannot be apart from each other too long. They fight, argue, and then have to crawl up next to each other. Their beginnings weren’t easy. Kali Rose, was my daughter’s first born. My ex and I took her in when she was only 5 months old. My daughter came into my life from Romania when she was 9 years old. She is mentally unable to take care of herself, let alone a child. Luke was her second child. He is 3 years younger than Kali Rose.

It took us four years to finalize his adoption. He was with his bio-mom for 10 months of his life. It was not a pretty or easy story… one that I can’t share without my heart breaking into tiny pieces. He is healthy and happy and one of the most forgiving souls I’ve ever encountered in my life.

My daughter has had two other babies who are now loved by forever-adopted families.

I may know a little bit about being a mother… of 8 kiddos. I have learned that patience is the essence of relating to our children. That humor can change a room full of kids. That love is the bare necessities of their development. And, that somedays are hard and full of challenges and things can shift in a minute. All of it passes in the blink of an eye.

I don’t know if I am a good mother or not. It’s not for me to decide. Some of my kids will say I am. Others, not so much. And we all have our stories.

I have been brought into this world to mother, not just my children, but myself and others. It’s in the past few years that I have learned to mother me in places that I neglected.

I miss my mother on holidays like today. She was a hard woman, and she was soft. She was courageous, and she was fearless. She taught me the things I wouldn’t do to my children from what she did to me. My mother was a warrior and an incredible powerful example of strength in my life. There was an unstoppable force in her that dictated everything and everyone around her. Her perseverance was definitely passed onto my genes. When I began to adopt children she was not happy to say the least. She judged my choices terribly. And, as most people who cannot accept their own choices, she lashed out at every decision I made with my children. However, she did love them in her own way.

Mothering my kiddos has been the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life. Even on the days that I am exhausted, hurt, and have no clue what to do, I find myself laughing and crying simultaneously.

What makes a mother a good one?

Your ability to transcend all the hardships and turn them into lessons. Your ability to forget quickly and forgive deeply. Letting go is the secret to this profession. If you hold on too tight you lose your grip.

I used to compare myself to the perfect PTA mothers at their school when my children were little. I could barely get all six out of the house and when I would drop them off at school I would judge myself based on how the mothers all looked. My kids were dressed, clean but sometimes (okay maybe a lot) disheveled. They were loved deeply. They knew it and felt it.

Today, on Mother’s Day, I hope you remember to mother YOU. Recall those moments you thought would last forever and you made it. You have done your job. I also want to honor those who aren’t mothers of little people but animals. Others who have chosen to mother the world with their love and presence. I believe there are fathers out there mothering the hell out of their children alone. My hat goes off to all of you. Every single person in this world has the ability to mother the world.

I love you… love yourself with the same fierce intensity you give to others, including your children.

Millie

The pics below are from our day exploring yesterday:

Living through Principle


The word “integrity” has been the theme for the last few weeks. Integrity is what makes you righteous, whole, and truthful. It’s an important word. How many of us say one thing and do the complete opposite? That’s an example of not living through integrity. 

I have been witnessing the need to clear things up through my truth and moral beliefs. I am purging, not just clutter in the home but past issues, old paradigms, and relationships that are not in alignment with my honor. At times, I am shocked that it’s still taking me so long to understand these life experiences and why I must continue to evolve and not stay stuff in the old patterns. We are growing and shifting and expanding at such a high rate of consciousness.

I am questioning more… other’s intentions around me. Whereas before, my airy fairy attitude allowed everything and anyone to just come into my vortex. I am not as trusting. And that is okay because I am accepting humanity on a higher level of energetic exchanges.

Do not tell me who you are. Show me through your actions. Do not promise me something that you know very well you won’t follow through with. Just be you. Be the WHOLENESS of your essence without pretending, compromising your word, or breaking your authentic nature. That’s all! 

I remember about six years ago witnessing my little girl. She was about 20 months then. One morning she showed me her wholeness and value. I heard her in her room so I opened the door catching her sitting on her bed. She extended an arm way out and said, “Nooooo. No, Mama….no!” I stepped back and realized she needed more time to herself. I walked out and closed the door. Ten to fifteen minutes later she called for me and we began our morning. She was in all her truth and knowing that I would understand. I completely honor this in its simplest form. She didn’t need me to get her up just because she was talking in there. She needed her time. She showed me that when she’s ready she will call me by name. Our perception and interpretations get in the way of how we value others and ourselves. She had not learned the distinction, therefore following her instincts and desires was all that was expected from her.   

No one is expecting perfection. No one wants what you cannot provide. Even a toddler will show you exactly who they are if you are willing to pay attention. Live within the means of what you believe and can accomplish. NO ONE or anything is worth the loss of your integrity. Sometimes it is like your virginity…once it’s gone there’s no getting it back. There is no trust or re-do button that can fix it. And, it starts from childhood. Standing your ground. Stand in your honor and worth.   

Live in the sweetest bubble of virtue. Navigate your life through the utmost level of principles. These are your beliefs. Let YOUR life be an example of who you are through love, laughter and actions! You know exactly what and who you are. If you don’t then you need to sit and contemplate for a while. If you don’t know how to find your wholeness, then how the heck can you expect another to do it for you? It’s time you recognize it in yourself. 

I love you,
Millie

The Power of Touch

My little boy was sick at school yesterday. He’s struggling with a stomach bug. Last night when I turned everything off to go to sleep, he got closer to me. He has to touch me as he sleeps. I can put a pillow between us and he finds the way to move the blankets and pillows to feel my warmth. I wanted him to scoot to the other side of the bed so he would feel better.

Luke: I need you next to me, mommy.

Me: Why do you need to sleep right on me?

Luke: Your touch makes me not have bad dreams.

I brought him closer. Rubbed his forehead. Kissed his head.

Me: Sweetheart, you are in the bed with me. You won’t have bad dreams.

Luke: Mommy, when I hold you, you make all bad nightmares go away quickly. When I am far from you, they get bad. Your energy fights the dreams. I only have happy dreams.

Luke will be five next week. For him to use the term “energy” is a testimony of how we communicate. In the middle of the night, he asked me to please give him angel healing. He calls reiki, Mommy’s angel healing. I did. He fell into a deep sleep around 2AM. Between the essential oils, the reiki, and the therapeutic touch, he woke feeling a bit better.

Touch is healing. We are both Aries. Our love language is touch. We need it. He thrives on feeling another through it. It always reminds me to be mindful of how I bring/show my energy into his world. He’s a little empath with an old soul… my baby Yoda.

The last few weeks I have written about your voice, listening, being acknowledged, and we can’t forget the power of touch in our lives.

Whether or not his body touching mine helps with his nightmares is true or not, it’s actually TRUE to him. He has created that reality in his life. During the day he doesn’t need it, but come nighttime he has to feel my body right by his. And there is something beautiful to be said about embracing those parts of our energetic bodies. We require the comfort of someone we love to soothe and smooth the rough edges, battle our fears, and make us feel loved. We want to be felt, acknowledged and love… always.

Touch is a nonverbal agreement between you and another. In loving ways, it is magical. It increases our oxytocin and other hormones that make us feel happy. We dive into the deep awareness of acceptance and love. We are united and connected by it.

Don’t be afraid to hug another. Hug tightly. I love you,

Millie


A Mama’s Heart

Our 3 y/o started daycare again today after a three month hiatus. He was as happy to see his school as I was in dropping him off to exhaust his energy. I came home with our 6 y/o to tear my house apart and deep clean it. In the midst of moving furniture and vacuuming I lost my emotions.

I don’t know where they came from. My oldest son and his girl will return home to New York tomorrow and the future emptiness engulfed me. I got him for three months. The first time in over ten years that we had that much quality time together.

So I stopped stripping the living room. I stopped picking up God-knows-how-old cereal from under the sofa. I stopped and allowed for my heart to stop racing.

Today is gloomy outside and inside of me. I thought I would be okay. But, I may not be. It will be a hard mama week. I will return to putting my business back out there. I will find some kind of stability. But the last three months have been (sigh) full of chaos and so many gifts.

I lost myself in the days. I lost myself in little ones. I lost myself in the yard. I lost myself in motherhood. I also found myself in all those things. I returned to a life of what I do best: mother all those around me.

I’m ready for the world to also find itself. For the peace to arrive. For the love to engulf us all. I recognize the shift and how it is well overdue. But, shit, it has been brutal! I recognize now that I have been battling deep state of sadness, perhaps a little bit of depression. Had I not had two little ones I am sure I would have lost myself way down the dark night of the soul.

We all need to be seen, felt, acknowledged and loved. We want to feel connections. And for me that has been the hardest part of the isolation…. Not being able to touch another has been a major test.

I have felt my tribe. I see the world now in a different light when I share openly. I have witnessed who is here and who is elsewhere. The division in our humanity has grown existentially.

I’m hoping the muck in collective consciousness is about finished with this cycle. It hasn’t just been the virus but the anger and hatred that has been unleashed in humanity. I pray we proceed with loving louder in order to heal. I’m ready for the next phase.

Sending love to you today. Be gentle as things are proceeding and evolving. Know your worth and your truth. Remember what you believe is yours but don’t try to push it on anyone else. Holding you from here energetically as I proceed with cleaning some weird stains that are unrecognizable from the carpet. Hugs.

Mama Lessons

My little girl brought me a top portion of the purple irises. I said thank you but then told her to please not pull the flowers.

Her face when stoic and I saw her tears swell.

I failed. I felt it immediately.

See, to her she saw the flower and wanted her mama to hold the beauty. She knows how much I love purple. She saw me take the photos yesterday while I told her that the flower always makes me so happy.

So I kneeled to meet her eyes and I cried … along with her. I held her tightly. I apologized. I placed the flower on my ear and she smiled. I thanked her for thinking of me. I told her I appreciated that she brought the flower to me. I asked her how it looked with my grey hair and she said I looked delicious.

I then explained that my reaction was absolutely horrible. It was wrong of me to tell her not to cut the flower. She’s seen me bring flowers from the garden in the past.

And such is the fluidity of being human with so many imperfections. We came inside and I put the flower in water. I held her as we talked about the baby groundhogs and how the mama was protecting them. I told her I would always protect her as well. She was happy. For a few minutes I was broken because I hurt a little girl’s feelings. Cause you guess it… this mama is tired.

My children don’t sleep. Ever. They get a few hours and then they are up running around. My husband and I are living on fumes. In the middle of the day I am beyond cranky at times. But I will never ever again disregard a present from either of them. They are here safe today. All my children are on this planet alongside even from afar.

A friend lost her child last week. And when I saw her disappointment I immediately thought of her and how she will never get to hear from him or receive any kind of gifts.

I fail at this being human thingy a lot and lately it feels like it’s often. We are all on edge. But that iris today stopped me. Kali’s face taught me to take a moment and receive every single thing that she presents to me. It’s in those moments we recognize the human connection.

I honor her. The soul in me recognizes her soul. And that connection extends to every single one of us like a ripple in a lake moving outward. We feel it all. The hurt in me feels the hurt in others.

May you recognize when you make a mistake and take accountability. It is the only way we heal each other and ourselves.

Love. That’s all we got.

Sacredness of Time

Sacredness of Time

That’s what we are experiencing on a new conscious level. We are having to live this moment while letting go of what and can happen tomorrow.

Last week, when I went hiking, I took this photo of the trail coming down the mountain. The rough edges and greenery stopped me. I stood there for some time witnessing the landscape all around me. I was there…. In that moment. I was all into the smells, scenery, consistency of the wet ground and the unsettled terrain. It all embraced me.

That’s how I’m feeling today: ever present with all of me. I miss the rest of my children who are scattered in different places of the country. But, I’ve never been much into this commercialized holiday. I honor motherhood daily. I don’t need to be reminded of it on one Sunday a year.

This past week kinda hit me hard. The hate that arrives from many is toxic and if I am not careful I fall into a deep ditch on the side of the journey. Next week may not be so rough.

When I look at the beauty of this picture and the roughness embracing the softness I think of our lives. We evolve through seasons changing. We sprout through rough terrains. We weather the storms. We exist within the greatest space in history. We are surviving. We are growing and expanding while trekking onward. We are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, friends and a hundred other ways to label our place here. We are the ALL of everything that’s happening right now.

May you recognize how important you are for shifting the collective at this time. Show up through love. Be the love you want in the world. It’s not easy. Sometimes it takes your breath away just like hiking up a mountain. I am a heart shaped rock tucked away by two lovely ferns in a trail. I am mindful of the sacredness of time by allowing and being. I fail and fall a lot. But when I rise from my down time I return to my center.

I love you. Thank you all for being in my trail and playing your role in the journey ahead. Happy Mama Day to all you beautiful souls. I honor you daily.

Love is What Saves Us

My son and I were working outside in the yard yesterday evening. He’s axing away at a tree. I’m clearing a heavily dense area into what will be a secret garden. I’m tired and sweaty.

The silence breaks with him, “Mom, you are doing an amazing job with my sister’s kids. You are raising them to be loving and healthy children.”

“Baby, where is this coming from?” I asked because it took me by surprise.

“You have to wait for them to go to bed in order to come out here and work on what you love to do which is nature. You sacrifice a little bit of you to help them survive. They are constant. They don’t give you a chance to breathe during the day (he giggles). I know this is not what you had in mind at this time of your life when we were all gone….”

I interrupt and stop pulling at the earth. Breathing heavily, I sit on the ground next to him feeling defeated. “Nelson, I truly don’t think I’m doing the best job for them or for me. Your sister was hard because of all her mental issues. They have so much of her running through their blood. I’m not the same woman I was then or have the same amount of energy….”

“You are better.” He stops clearing the tree and sits next to me, “You are giving them life. They would be dead with her. You and Matt have created a foundation and loving home. And you always say that love is all we need. They are a LOT. I admit that it’s overwhelming at times but they truly love you so much. They are smart and they are constantly challenging you and the world around them.”

He hugs me. I shed a few tears. Mostly of gratitude for recognition.

That was the pause needed to just finish for the day. It was getting dark. My body ached but I felt great to have done so much with his help in a couple of hours.

This second act at mothering children is different. It’s conscious parenting. It’s a lot harder than before. It’s also a lot easier than before. These children are thriving and I have zero expectations for them except that they feel loved. I’m trusting they continue to find the magic in the world and give love to it.

And that they are.

When my 31 year old recognizes the journey it does make it special. He’s been here five weeks…the longest time he’s spent with them. We spoke a bit more. He was kind and loving and full of insight. The adult in him acknowledges the adult in me.

Walking back to the house the earth seemed to sink us into it with gratitude for tending to her on Earth Day. At that moment I thanked the greatest mother of all…Gaia…and all the lessons she teaches me.

On Being a Mother

My sons came home for the holidays. They always do regardless of where they are. I’m grateful for this. They are amazing men. They gave me the reason to mother them and so many others.

I was told from early on that the likelihood of me bearing children was minimal. The older I got the less the chances. So I showed the doctors that I don’t take no for an answer. I had Nelson at 20. Patrick at 22. Several miscarriages and lots of health issues didn’t stop me from bringing these two souls into this world.

We grew up together. I was a single mom for a long while with them. When I left their father he ran the opposite direction and never saw them again. We nurtured each other. We grew up learning the ins and outs of parenting.

These boys taught me unconditional love, patience, letting go, humor, and how to be a conscious soul through a very human experience. Their love for me and each other has been magical.

When I began adopting children they never complained. They opened up their hearts and shared their home with little strangers. My sons, not once, asked me to please stop. They never felt jealous or pushed aside. And even now with two little ones at home all I witness is unconditional love and tenderness. They are my heroes.

They go back home today. This mama heart is tender this morning. I will miss their pure intelligence and intellectual conversations. Their laughter. Their own banter that’s hysterical most of the time. I will miss their inspirational and motivational pep talks to me about how I need to be sharing more stories and creating a forum for the world to learn from One another. They are techie. I’m not and they show me this and that…sending loving thoughts while challenging me to think outside of my comfort zone.

My head starts to feel overwhelmed but they truly are looking out for my best interest.

You know when you recognize your job as a good parent? When your grown children want to come home and just be with you. I’ve done my best and they’ve exceeded any kind of desire I’ve had for them as adults. Happiness comes out in every laughter and tear. Every touch and hug reminds me that I’ve been so deeply blessed with love. True love without ever judging or criticizing my choices. And I have done the same for them.

Be gentle with your children. Allow them to do whatever they need to do in order to learn and evolve. It’s not our jobs to get in their way. Our only job is to be there to love. And love is all there is….

Monsters

Car conversation with a 4 year-old early in the morning…
Kali: do monsters have bellies?
Me: monsters don’t exist.
Kali: do they have eyes?
Me: they don’t exist so they don’t have anything.
Kali: do they have mouths?
Me: Kali, monsters aren’t real. It’s a made up thing for television and entertainment.
Kali: They do exist. Do they have necks?
Me: Monsters aren’t real.
Kali: YEESSSSS they are.
Me: In a philosophical way… yes. They are real. There are bad people out there. But they didn’t start bad. They started with love. They came into this world with light and someone blew it out.
Kali: Why people create monsters then?
Me: (sighing….and then a mini rant longer than I can remember) Baby girl, monsters do exist. I’m sorry. They exist in anger and hatred. They exist in mental disorders and they are there to corrupt our world. They are fabricated in religions and stories to fill doubt in others. They instill fear and oppression but it’s mostly there for a lot of growth and balance. Where there is light there is also darkness. So, they do exist in a metaphoric term but not in a way you are thinking of when you watch television. That’s also there to create anxiety and despair. We live in a society that uses control mechanism through fear based subjects…and “monsters” are one of those ways. They don’t have giant heads and distorted bodies.
She then asked about Kali the Destroyer. Her daddy told her about Kali, the Hindu Goddess, and how she has the same name. He went on to tell her about her history the other day. She recited bits and pieces of what daddy told her. I was surprised she got a lot of it spot on. She wanted to know if she was a monster since she’s depicted with her tongue sticking out at times. I answered to the best of my ability.
Kali: so you see, they do exist, Mama!  Do they have tongues? Not Kali…she’s not a monster, right? But the rest of the monsters, do they have tongues?
Me: ugggghhhhh… silence.

I am BEing

I was dropping Kali at school this morning when she began to run towards the door, “Mama, I’m gonna win you!”

I watched her little body running against the morning wind, her curls being pushed back, the dark skin against the hot-pink tank top…oh my gosh…she was lovely. My heart reached my throat and I thought: “how precious! She’s beautiful. She’s magnificent. Look at her soul so carefree. She’s mine.”

How did I get here? At this age? I was done having children. I was going to travel and explore the world. Here I am not just with a four year old but on the ledge of getting a one-and-a-half by the time he gets here. But, that’s how we show up to life. We stop planning. We just go with the ebb and flow. We push through the unknown.

Kali waited for me to get to the door, “You are so slow, Mama!”

Indeed I am…I am slow in arriving. I am slower than any other time in my life because I want to savor every minute of these moments. I want to feel them. I want to honor them. I want to keep remembering why I am all the things that make me compassionate and loving. Because of these children…mine and others’. This is how I’m arriving into almost everything in my life. I’m slowly falling into my roles as a mother, a wife, a woman and a human. My time here is slowly revealing my most intimate purpose. I’m no longer running from (or towards) anything. I am simply BEing.

**photo from a few weeks ago as she played on the beach talking to the seashells. She kept saying it was “my favorite day with you, Mama!”