Under the Embers


I Felt Like Telling A Story
April 3, 2010, 12:29 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Still the same, though not the same

At my center, even as a very young child, I knew. I have a strong constitution, though my personality may be malleable and my zodiac sign mutable, I have a very cardinal sense of Self. I am dynamic, highly empathic, and often in love with Change. But I suffer no seek of identity. I know who I am.

I am a storyteller to myself.

I used to be the Master of Rapids; life without preoccupation with topic, direction, intention, or presentation. Impulsive thinking and actions, running without stopping, smashing though walls instead of into them, and creating magic in the dust trails I left behind. I am concerned, sometimes, that I have tried on too many peoples’ eyes… Too much editing, and now presentation and tact serve where creativity and power used to rule.

The balance of this, however, is feeling like I am more refined. I have practice, my boots are worn in a bit, and I know the path without stumbling. Intuition and experience are my staff and shield. My movements are more precise without as much waisted energy. I suffer far fewer “emotional hangovers”. I have less to apologize for, fewer to apologize to, and I am frequently proud of both my effort and my accomplishments. I am careful, but I am not dull. I am intentional and accountable and I am strong.

With Windows operating system, you can do a System Restore. You can go back to a point in the past. You can intentionally leave markers, if you want to, as your System Restore Points. It is time travel. Many times I have wished that my human memory held that function. I could make moments for myself, and when thought upon, I could return to that point in time whenever I desired.

I am almost embarrassed to say that I have tried to do exactly that a few times, as a child and as an adult. I have paused and taken inventory of my surrounding. I focused on everything around me; objects, weather, fragrances both pleasing and horrible. Sometimes I would think of a word, object, or even silly message, to give to myself in the future. I tried to take it all in and “memorize” it.

Later, I sat in still and quiet, and with eyes closed, I tried to conjure up those moments. With vivid clarity, I could recall many things. It may not be time travel, but it was a fun mental exercise.  Like the effect Morning has on Dreams, a haze settles eventually. I can still visit my System Restore memories whenever I wish, but all I have done is enhance my awareness and focus. My life is not a point-by-point linear adventure, but rather a woven tapestry of both the amazing and the mundane. I skip from memory to memory with huge gaps in between. It is only fair that my mind not keep every little step, breath, and trip to the bathroom cashed. But there is so much life in between my memories. That time is lost, but what I have is honest and important. Those are the  stories I tell myself.

Sora, 3 seconds old

My memory of the births of my children is beautiful. If it were art, it would be my Museum Art with the rest of my life as Fridge Art. My memory of both births includes vivid and clear points that will be with me forever. I would time-travel back again and again if I could. I love Sora’s story. It was 20 minutes from “my tummy feels weird, I wonder if this will turn into labor” to having her in my arms. It was an intense, nearly painless, overwhelming, and amazing experience. I felt so in love; with my baby, with my partner, and with my body. I have a quiet story, too. The story of what went on inside of my mind and deep down in my primal spirit. But I am also grateful that with Sora, I have a video of part of it. I wish that I had more; the 5 extra minutes of labor before the recording started, the 5 minutes afterwards. What I do have is wonderful and precious. The little folder on my hard drive of pictures from that day is so important to me.

I grieve that I do not have these things for Zion. I do not have a video, photos of the birth, belly cast, or witnesses. What I do have is a story.

The story of my labor is memorized like a favorite move re-watched so many times. I sat with it alone and in quiet. I breathed in and out, slowly, with excitement and joy. I made myself a System Restore Point. As I sat there on the dingy white armchair, alone that early morning out in the country, I put to memory my experience.

I remember the exact shade of ivory that the walls were painted. I remember the first time that I heard the word “ivory” used to describe a specific shade of white. I was 9, and I was going along with my mother as she looked at wedding dresses. Some of the “whites” were yellowy or blueish, but she was looking at one that was ivory. I was sitting on the floor, playing with a plastic tag and a black clip, listening.

I remember the smell of the room, because I had made soup the night before, and the kitchen was still very messy. The room smelled like soup, Nag Champa incense, and Simple Green.

The sun was coming up and breaking through the fog. It cascaded through the window behind me, and I could watch the light increase on my hands… Hands that were flat, palm down, on my legs. I would close my eyes, take a deep breath, and feel a wave come over me. In each wave, I talked to my baby. I asked Baby if it was ready, and I let Baby know that I was so happy. Several waves came and went, with my eyes closed. It was a rocking, like the ocean. Zion, an hour oldAfter a while, the waves were crashing into me, and I was a bit shaken. I opened my eyes and the light on my hands was glowing bright. The whole room was on fire with sun and reflection. I realized that I was in very intense labor, and that Baby was indeed ready. I stood to move to the bath tub. When I stood up, the waves that I experienced before turned suddenly into an intense, never ending, waterfall. I walked slowly with a waterfall inside of me, and started the tub. The warm bath took away my intense waterfall, and I relaxed. A few deep breaths and one really intense push later, Zion was born. Right into my hands, in my bath tub, into his life, my baby.

I was calm. I was giddy and calm. I sang and sang and Zion looked deep into my eyes for a better part of an hour. We sat together in the tub for nearly an hour, him nursing, and our eyes never looking away.

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