What I've learned

acrylic and collage on canvas

Its almost been a year since we left New York, can you believe it? I know that its still hard for me to understand that 11 whole months have passed and as I enter the season in which we spent our last month there, with all of the goodbyes and the leaving that we did, I can't help but reflect on how much I have learned in the past year. When we left Brooklyn I thought that the move was such an excruciating, heart wrenching, experience that we would move through and once we were settled in a new place, that life would get back to normal and we'd go on much as before... but really I had no idea that our move would be just the start of continuing huge changes for us.

I see now that the difficulty of the move prepared me for what was and is to come, living through our move showed me that you can leave all of your friends, the place that you have lived for 15 years, the home that you renovated lovingly where you birthed your children, you can leave all of the places you know and everything is going to be OK.

This passed year has also taught me that,

You can move your family to a new home, new city, new place that you have only visited two times. You can make a life changing choice for your family, act on it and move to this place 800 miles away that you just felt was the right fit, going on faith, and everything is going to be OK.

You can meet new people, make new friends, stretch outside of your comfort zone and everything is going to be OK.

You can find out that you are pregnant for the 4th time, something that you feared because you did not know if you could handle the changes that it would bring to your family and yourself, and realize that everything is going to be OK.

You can have your health insurance company decide that your pregnancy is a pre-existing condition and review whether they will continue to insure your family, including your children, and everything is going to be OK.

Your father can be diagnosed with a dreaded degenerative disease, and everything, no matter what the future holds with this, is going to be OK.

Your parents can announce to you that they are moving to the same city that you just moved to, after you have not lived close to them for the past 20 years, and everything is going to be OK.

Your family of origin can implode. Issues that have been dormant for 30 years or more can come up, you can have a falling out with your brother's wife and stop talking to your brother, one of the most dear people in the world to you, and everything is going to be OK.

You can begin to have high blood pressure for the first time in any of your pregnancies, threatening your choice to birth at home, and everything is going to be OK.

Your dear cousin and his wife can loose their baby, a child that you had hoped would grow up with your new baby, and through the sadness, everything is going to be OK.

Your computer and your phone can break separately in the same day (this happened to me a couple of days ago!) and everything is going to be OK.

Everything really is going to be OK, and not in a "lets just ignore all of this way", no not at all. What I have really learned this year is that I can dwell within all of these things, I can be present within the discomfort, I can feel the sadness, the anger, the confusion, and I can still wake up every morning and greet myself. I can say thank you for my precious human life. I can know that as long as I am right in my heart with my small family, my husband and my kids, everything is going to be OK. I can say that even without knowing what that means, because one thing that I keep learning again and again is that I can not know or control the future.

I can pray, I can rejoice, I can revel in the beauty that is all around me. I can exercise, and sweat, and practice Yoga, and eat nourishing foods, and feel how all of this helps my body to get through all of the things that I can't control around me. Each day I can do what I can, to relax, to speak calmly to my children and to forgive myself when I am rushed and impatient.

Each day I can start anew, because each day feels holy. Each day feels like a blessing. Each day we must be gentle with each other because everyone is walking a hard road. Each day, everything is going to be OK.