Saturday, March 03, 2007

"In the depth of winter, I finally realized that within me
there lay an invincible summer"
~Albert Camus
A long time ago a dear friend gave me this quote as a reminder that there are always better days ahead. My first marriage was to a much older man who I cared about deeply, I would even go as far to say that I truly loved him. I was 24 and he was 48. He was a widower with 4 older children when we married. I was young and idealistic, thinking that I was going to make up for some of the pain of losing a wife and mother. I really had no clue. We endured 13 difficult and sad years, but the one thing my ex-husband and I still share is the love we have for my son Jonathan, if nothing else. I will always be grateful to him for the gift of my son.

Nothing in my life prepared me for what I would feel during my pregnancy and the birth of my son. It is quite possible that I bonded closer to my child during my pregnancy because I was so lonely. My husband was very hesitant to our having a baby, I thought it would be what would bring us together. I was wrong about that, but I was right in the fact that my son was th
e greatest thing that ever happened to me. During my pregnancy my husband drifted further away, and I grew closer to my unborn child. It was truly incredible how lonely I was, yet, I was the happiest I had ever known possible. My husband did not touch me, he never reached out to feel for the wonderful movement within me. I would say, " oh my God, feel this, he's moving," he declined and I stopped asking. I grew bigger and he withdrew completely.

I loved being pregnant, I felt blessed in a way that seemed so undeserved. Everyday I thanked God for being so good to me, allowing me to become a mother. After 48 hours in labor and an eventual c-section, I delivered my son. I still well up when I think back to this moment in my life because truly no accomplishment has ever come close to this moment. One day the nurse walked in to my room while I was holding my son and she said, "what's the matter" as I cried, I told her that my mother had told me that my whole life, perspective and everything I believed in would change forever and I realized she was right. Nothing would ever be the same. No longer would I be free of worry and the love that I felt at that moment could have filled all the oceans in the world.

My son is now 14, I worry about him, hoping that I have shown him strength, perseverance, love, generosity, kindness and good values. Sometimes he is typical of most children that age, he can be selfish, unfocused, and will often take the path of least resistance. I try to model the opposite of these things and present him with opportunities to gain the first qualities. In these times of video games, MTV, and television that is often demoralizing, it can be a hard struggle for a parent. I am not giving up though. I vow to direct my son even when he is resistant, and at times angry with me because at the end of the day, I know that he knows how much I love him and that is why I will always challenge him to think, react and challenge his own purpose in life and examine his own character.

Prior to my second marriage, my son and I were on our own for 6 years. I did not date often (3 times actually and never a second date), for I knew I was not emotionally ready. I had to figure out somethings for myself. Examine why I made certain choices and how I could make a better and different life for myself and my son. I had vowed to spend at least one major holiday and birthday by myself to ensure my own emotional growth. Though the road that lead me to where I am was bumpy to say the least, I gained a much smoother future because of it. Best of all, I got my one and only child, truly a gift that I don't take for granted and one that I give th
anks for every single day.

The second happiest day will follow soon....


Lisa said...

I'm going to cry. I love hearing you talk about Jon, and I am witness to how very much you love him (and I love him, too!).

Teenagers are so hard to deal with, but with perserverance on our part, they eventually "get it"! I see some signs of that with Kayla. It's slow going, but think of all the things our moms told us that we couldn't have cared less about when we were teens...only to say, "OMG, my mother was right!" when we were in our 20's and 30's!

We both have exes who don't always share our ideals, so it seems as though we have a hard time getting anything to sink in to our kids' brains. But it does, it really does. When they least expect it, they hear our voices in their heads warning them like the 5 o'clock whistle on the Flintstones!! They'll get it eventually. May God bless them all.


simply me said...

Thank you Li - I know that you are right. Your kids are wonderful because they have such good role models like you and Al. Bless you all. I pray that Jon grows to understand the depth of my love and why I challenge him (so that he'll grow to be strong, brave, and honorable)


Matty said...

Isn't motherhood wonderful? well...most of the time? Your post brought back the memory of my first born son, how I held him in my arms in the hospital, and thanked God, and promised him that I would do the very best to make sure that this boy would grow into a loving man, and so far I kept my word.,and God blessed me with a 2nd son.
I really didn't have a hard time with my sons during the teen years,,,the early 20's were a bit shaky though!
Now, I have my grandkids, and I know better, so I can do better.
Like Lisa said,,,,,,its true, they do hear our voices in their heads.
Just last week, my son of 33 told me,,,he said, Mom, whenever I have to make a choice, I swear I can hear your voice in my head, you're my conscience... its scary!
Nothing stronger than a mother's love!

SkinCareGirl said...

I saw your post at Fabulously 40 and then came to your blog.
What a beautiful story.
Reminds me of myself when I was in my 20s. I think the saying is true, as we get older we do get wiser.:)