Thursday, 30 June 2011

Thoughts on the Power of Creation

Here a ray of light. 

I blink. 

It’s the changing of the moods and the weather that are liberating on this island. Every man an island. You don’t stay for too long in the same spot. Move on. Get used to it! 

Change is the stuff of life, of nature. 

I am a mother no matter where I go, what I do. I take her with me. It strengthens my womanhood. It gives me power – coming from the belly. Punch! I can stand my ground. Punch! That’s where my sexuality lies. Punch! I am not a victim of men but victoria of a long line of women who have carried and born children. The force of nature between heart and genitalia; pulsing away, fluttering, pushing, kicking. 

Is it with the exit of that creature of God that we/I struggle? No more united. No more mine. 

Then the question arises who am I? 
Perhaps then the creator of the universe?

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The Daughter in me of the Northern Mother

The sky is changing, the clouds become thicker, closer to earth, snow mountains of flock of sheep – in the Sky and on Earth. We're going up North. It forms an important part of my childhood consciousness; where is it located in my adult consciousness? Unnecessary division? But in my adult world there is quite a bit of disdain, perhaps snobbery. It’s brim full with emotions, like their glasses. Too much, too much. And too many tears - stifled silenced voice of me mam. Liberated when she gets there - perhaps not so much anymore as she gets older. My mother is part of me whether I like it or not! Sometimes I am at peace with her, in my mind and heart, and sometimes I oscillate between love and hate in quick successions. The grey clouds are gathering in the sky. North Rain – Rain North. Familiar northern backyards are flying by. The angel of the North. Things become more functional up here. Practical, functional, but not pretty. ‘Have faith in God’ a sign says. Aye. My playlist is called ‘War’. “You’re in a funny mood” he says. The Horns of Lhasa in Newcastle. As we pull out of the station I put the 'Peace' playlist on. My breath is my salvation.  

Monday, 27 June 2011

Alone not lonely

I am alone again. How strange. It is as if I open the door to visit this other woman I leave behind again when I am with the family. Is that right? Do I do that? Who is she? She is more self-assured, stranger, wiser, more in tune, more grounded. Also more sad! Why can’t she be with the family? Can I take her with me? It feels like with others I am so much more (aware of dependency) dependent – weakened by it. Losing my self, this other woman, ISIDORA, the gift of wisdom. I am pulled away from her, pulled apart; I feel like being pulled back to family life at origin. Like my mother, passive. Like my father, excluded. Not always - of course. But these moments are sinking – drowning, at loss of a point of reference, of solace, of consolation, of strength, of power, of backbone, of fighting spirit. There is insecurity, shaking like a leaf, trembling, in the face of a wind, fearing the storm. In reality, I pick myself up, straighten myself and feel power. It’s not all lost. It’s just difficult. 

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Dartmouth thoughts

In every pebble the beauty of the world is contained. Every spot seems to be the spot where the beauty has reached perfection. Every pebble is the world; Worlds.......... And I am consoled. I am temporarily appeased. I wasn’t just before. And the day before. Who am I? Who am I if I haven’t got my work, my profession, my husband, my children, my things? The illusion of identity, which changes depending on situation and people. But only a few, they are interchangeable and mostly compatible. But what if I am stripped of it all? What remains? My intellectual understanding (belief?) - Says the soul. But I am not ready yet to dispense of titles, things, people. What would happen to me if I was left to my own devices, bare of extensions and appendices? Would I succumb and die or would I discover my treasure? I can not possibly contemplate that - yet. For now I take consolation in the beauty of the pebbles and stones – natures’ soul. 

Saturday, 18 June 2011

The loneliness of being a mother

Now and again a yawning loneliness seeps into the daily life of looking after a baby. I've had this before with my twin girls. A deep wariness that envelopes an invisible, nondescript me who is drowning in the endlessness and boredom of feeding, sleeping, changing nappies, playing, feeding, sleeping, changing nappies...... And the other mothers too. In those days we all put on a brave smile, display our best behaviour and play at being such a wonderful and engaged mother. The truth is today I want to resign from this job. The truth is today I feel utterly depressed and lonely. In vain I try to reach out, to someone, something, anything - until I succumb to the lonely gaping hole. I have learned that there is value in not escaping this hole and not filling it with chit-chat, gossip, or senseless doing but - to sit still and see what happens. More often than not nature is my great friend and helper. The gentle swaying of the leaves in the wind, the accompanying rustling sound, the bird's song, the beetle crawling over a stone; the rhythmical beating of the drum - the universal hum. And suddenly there is an opening in the hole, light seeps through, speckles of greys and whites. And my heart rejoices. I have a gift. I am a gift! And I break out into a song of jubilations and celebration of life. And the baby squeals.

Friday, 17 June 2011

She is everywhere and in everything

mother country
mother earth
mother’s day
mother tongue

soft breast of my mother
children go their lonely way
watching out for a loving bird
bird fly over the clouds 
where home is not
fly through happiness 

love body
white milk
licked by the cat’s tongue
red little tongue caresses my body 
over and over 
caressing our bodies 
our freedom

a dead dragonfly lies on the road
accusations start
you stepped on it! 
no you! 
not me! 
yes you! 
no - You Mami! 

to have peace I concede
yes it was me
my own mother
between hate and love 
or yearning and love? 

will it be the same with my girls? 
my wedding finger is throbbing
the little one is crying in her sleep
it’s midnight
what might it be? 
she was in pain
throwing her body about
now settled again

she is so much more able to say what is wrong
what she needs

I am too

Friday, 3 June 2011


finding my place within it
around it and be it
my tears and heart - moving
turning towards and holding
it's ok, it will be fine
a long time - coming

sticks and stones
not so random anymore
but placed and held
and appreciated and
transitory, but into a different
order and shape
to suit the mood
to suit the need
the need to be seen and heard
a place in the heart of - World

Mother and baby
breathing together
in unison
subtly aligning - re-aligning
to what needs to be
you are me and I am you
for together we create
a world that understands
and seeks and accepts
that love is the ground

I left a stone for a friend
who moves my heart
the stone is old
by the comings and goings of the tides
the tail-end of a word
engraved in old letters
END - at the edge - so that we may begin

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Nurturing attachment

My son is almost a year old. His needs at the moment are almost that of a newborn. He wants to feed regularly, at night it's again down to every two hours, and he wants to be held and be physically close, particularly at night. In the day he goes crazy exploring and cruises around like no tomorrow. I can hardly keep up. And then back to the breast, back to the cuddles. It's exhausting, but it's got to be done. Many voices there are who say a lot to the contrary. I find this confusing and puzzling. I am amazed at how strong these voices are that decry closeness and champion independence. Maybe I see it, hear it everywhere because I am aware that some of these voices are also inside of me. 

I've noticed that the voices about independence start pitching up at around two months, but definitely at around three months of a baby's life. This seems to be the acceptable cut off point of continuously being at the mercy of the baby. The things I have been told or have heard: Don't cuddle too much, for too long, otherwise he will get used to it and will eat you up. Don't ever make the  mistake of taking the baby into your bed, you will never get them out again. He will grow up mother fixated! At this age he should not be wanting so many feeds, he should be sleeping through now. Wouldn't a bottle be better? For you, easier? It's all that sling carrying you did, he got used to it now. It's the breastfeeding, it makes them dependant. It doesn't harm the baby to be left crying a little (what's a little I wonder). Do you leave the baby alone at home while you go to get the girls from school? He has to learn to be on his own too and not always be wanting mother. 

But see I say, I think, the little one was born with the need for closeness and physical contact. Nothing else but mother will do. No dummy, no bottle. Mamma. And why should it not be like that? Who benefits from it not being like that? Why do we in this society value independence so highly? What's wrong with me committing to nurturing that attachment to that child as long as that child needs it? Believe me, sometimes I would rather sit down and have a cup of tea and read a magazine. Or go for a snooze, on my own. Or do some gardening. This attachment business does not come easily to me. And I don't always do it with a smile. I can be rather grumpy about it sometimes. But the commitment is there, because I believe in its importance. 

I believe that for the first few years, the infant needs to have that secure base to which they can come back to again and again (it is often one step forward and ten steps back) until they have a more solid footing in the world out there. I want to give that to my child. Because this child is the future. This child will have an impact on the world so I want to do a good job because I care about the world. And my commitment and the belief in it is not theoretical. It's real. With my twin girls the attachment was far more patchy and difficult because of their prematurity and them being twins. I worried many times that because of our circumstances I had not been able to give enough to them. It turned out that my worries were unfounded. I believe it's the commitment that was crucial in our relating. They always knew and still do that I am there for them, however grumpy. 

And with my son, him and me having the luxury of time and no competition of another baby, the work that goes into nurturing that attachment shines through every day in the form of smiles and laughters and cuddles he gives to me. In the way he is completely sure in his knowledge that I am looking after him and making sure he is safe (when he crawls up those dangerous concrete stairs and grins back at me!). It glimmers in his eyes. And he not only graces me with his glimmer, others get it too. So I shall continue with my commitment of giving, of nurturing - for this attachment is the basis for Love to oneself, and Love to an other. It's a lived experience on a daily basis.