Morning Pages, my journal, has become an important part of my morning routine. It has been a place for me to share my joy and my sorrow, my anger and frustrations. No one needs to see my words, ever, unless I choose to share.
The past blogs have been about a potential change in my life and how I processed it through words on paper. I had to stop sharing when the pain became too deep.
I didn’t stop writing daily in my journal, however. Over the past two months, there were moments of dread…hope…devastation… fear…realization…grief… acceptance…and now today patiently waiting to get to the other side.
Sprinkled in amongst the elements of change were moments of normalcy, even joy.
It’s all there. Documented for me to review. What I see is that, after scratching out all the anger (you can see it in my handwriting as well as in my words), I found my way to understanding.
My daughter is moving far away. She is taking, with her, my job, my joy, my grandson. Change is hard on everyone.
She sat, calmly, while I cried. She stood, strong, with her man. Time passed, and we didn’t talk about it. Instead, we focused on the daily activities of the baby; superficial conversation to keep the tears from my eyes. At one point, in my journal, I wrote what I knew I needed to write: “Let go. Let God.” I put this in God’s hands.
It was at this point that I started listening, hearing words that weren’t spoken, out loud, but still so clearly evident. My daughter. I started hearing my daughter. The words were there, behind her eyes. A mom knows. This was breaking her heart too. But, she appeared, on the outside, to be happy about the opportunity for “an adventure” as she called it.
When I found my strength, she could let go of her’s.
She cried. “I’m afraid.”
“Me too!” is all I could say back.
But, at least we were talking together again. And then I could hug her and tell her how much I love her and that everything was going to be ok. And, I could once again be the support that she counts on with words of encouragement. “This is an opportunity, a door that has been opened for you. You would always wonder what was on the other side if you didn’t pass through this door.”
My journal documents the daily, gripping pain that I no longer shared out loud with her until it became monotonous even for me. My god, get over it already. No one is dying!
And then, in the middle of the despair, my other daughter marries. The clouds parted. Joy and sunshine filled a few days. I practiced a toast over and over again until it became part of me. Words of deep love for my daughter; my daughters. Words that tell our story:
“When their dad died, in 1994, we became a very tight unit. We watch out for each other. We help each other. We have laughed and cried together, listened and loved each other through everything.”
And then, I offered up a toast that was more actual suggestions for a happy, successful marriage: Watch out for each other. Help each other. Laugh and cry together. Listen and love each other through everything.
I looked at both my daughters, on this day, and saw beautiful women standing strong by their men. And, I was a proud mom standing strong with my daughter; my daughters.
We have a bond. No move will break that bond. But even today, as we count down the last two weeks before they move, I write again, “Let go. Let God. I feel I have. At least, I’ve tried. Letting go, doesn’t take away the grief. It just removes the battle.”
Each day, my outward strength has allowed my daughter to grieve. She is leaving a great job, wonderful friends, and lifetime of connections that has made her so successful. She is allowing the light to shine on her husband now. Her courage is amazing. Still, she cries. Seeing your daughter stand strong with tears in her eyes, is humbling. We have come full circle. I smile. I raised a daughter to be strong. She is now giving strength back to me.