Love is a patchwork quilt, like fragile glass pieces reinforced with shining stainless steel. It is the heartbeat that measures our days, pumps rich nourishing swooshing breaths from start to finish, keeps pumping hope before birth, and lingers long after death.
Our hearts get broken, mend and melt. They expand and contract, vibrate and soar, wince and wink, reminding us that we are earth-bound beings with spirit-bound souls. In this season of cupid-love, I am celebrating the heart. Not just the power of romantic love, lost and won, held and released. I am celebrating all the ways that love stitches us one to another. My hands are busy making glass hearts for you to carry home, while my fingers fly on the keyboard, finding the words to send a virtual hug to those loved dearly here and there, present and gone.
Today, I am celebrating the mother-love of children.
First we dream of a child that might be someday, and then if we are lucky that child finds a window, a door, a way to come into our hearts, and mend us whole, and render us forever in more than one place. We are never the same once we clone our hearts and send it into a world, multiplying our path into a thousand unknown journeys. Maybe we are called mother, stepmother, auntie, teacher, mentor, foster, adopted or sister soul. It’s not the title but the talent for taking under our wings, nesting right beneath the seat of breath, a love that is bigger than we knew possible to inhale. They leave a footprint that is everlasting.
This week is when my stepdaughter Kelly was born. So, I’ll begin with her in my story of mother love.
I can’t imagine loving anyone more than I love my son Chris, but then I just have to think about the gift of one-step-away motherhood, children we love and mentor from marriages and unions that came before. I wasn’t there the day Kelly was born. It wasn’t my time or place to know her yet. I’m thankful for her mother Linda and her late father Wayne for making such a fine girl and letting me have a space and a place to love that little girl as much as I do Chris, who came to Wayne and I through the traditional path of birth. Divorce is not easy for kids, or for grownups, and moving on is painful. But it comes with gifts, and some of that is expanding the circle of love to include a family that is reshaped when one door closes. Stepchildren are a window that opens up a heart, so fresh air finds a way and a space to renew.
Today, I have two more stepchildren I love, and came to know when widowhood offered me another chance to fall in love all over again with Jim. Two amazing adults, Kara and Matt. They bring their own unique talents and gifts that keep making my life bigger and better. Loving my child and stepchildren is an exercise in expansion. They share their loves and in turn, I get to love their mates and offspring, Elizabeth, Dave, Megan, and grandchildren, Regan and Reid.
I see this story is just unfolding and it is with anticipation that I wait in the corridor of potential love for all that comes from these blessings life has offered.
In gratitude, I celebrate what is and I wait for what will be. Lucky, lucky me.
What children do you love in your life?
Here are some glass heart gifts I’ve been making and are now available on my etsy shop, BeLoveGlass.