WITH DESPAIR CAME DISCOVERY

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In the darkness, there is light.  A flicker that illuminates a distant hope.

For so long, I have lived in the dark, trying to maneuver this life without a visible path.  It was only a glimmer which directed me for my broken soul had no body whole to walk with.  With despair came discovery.  

I have shed that which I thought I was.  My scarred and marred shell protects and prevents the insidious pain.  I am manifesting and mending.

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These past weeks have been hard.  I had hit a wall.  Medically exhausted.  Not simply tired with the stresses of life.  No.  I was unable to move and think for the better part of a week.  During this time of deep sleep, there was also time for deep reflection.  Why had I allowed myself to become so broken?  How had life become so imbalanced and overwhelming that my body demanded it rest?  

I got to deep thinking about what I wanted in this life, or at least what I had wanted, and how misaligned my present had become with my ideals.  The simple had become burdensome.  Mess caused stress.  Art manifesting in others but my dreams never becoming reality.  Each breath so laboured.  

It was in the quiet that I discovered that which must become important in my life:  ME.  It took my broken soul to access the dark recesses of my mind and discover that for so many I am not important.  I placed so much weight on others and non-existent relationships.  The dedication to self discovery and love has been lost.  

For some time I have been pulled in unfulfilling directions.  But now I feel found.  I take ownership and accountability for allowing myself to slip away.  I must now take ownership of being the soul responsible for putting me back together.  

I am choosing to step away from that which pulls me from actualization.  I choose now to focus on that which manifests MY happiness:  my children, my home school, my art, my health.  I will continue to be an advocate for natural parenting, gentle loving, post partum and birth triumphs and struggles, human rights, but I have decided no longer to physically support women on an individual basis.  Postpartum care will no longer be a focus of the blog.

ivy & wren will now focus wholly on my own personal journey through motherhood.  It will become a lifestyle blog.  Homeschooling is a paramount part of my life and I will choose to highlight our self-directed studies, art therapy and projects.  There will be a greater look into my home, my children, our love.  

I will be delving deeper into art, portraiture and textile work that I plan on sharing.  

WITH DESPAIR CAME DISCOVERY.

THE LAST FIRST WORD

The end is the beginning of all things, Suppressed and hidden, Awaiting to be released through the rhythm Of pain and pleasure. - Jiddu Krishnamurti

"Dada".  The last first word.  Could it be?  Can a word spoken so gently carry so much weight?  This simple and oh so sweet name, whispered by the bubba, set forth a thunderous realization:  I will never serve as the vessel for a babe again.  

Our hearts house the unconditional love for five babes.  It is amazing and, undoubtedly, if we were surprised with more babes, our love for them would reside comfortably and hand in hand with that of their siblings.  But it is definitive.  I have all my babes.  

The physical pain of pregnancy is too much for me and is something which I am no longer willing to bear.  A decade has been spent growing, nurturing, loving babes.  There is a lifetime left of learning and love.  I am forever dedicated to these amazing little spirits.  But in the mess of motherhood, mama had become my only role and the role of me had begun to fade.  

But I am okay.  The mama hood that I bear, I wear as a red cloak of strength.  It is made of a powerful love that shrouds me from all that I fear on this journey:  the growing up of the babes;  their straddling of innocence & dependence; their eventual flight from the nest; guiding as they wander.

As mamas, our literal function of housing life ends.  But we become THE VESSEL.  Our very beings are the terrariums of light, love, safety, nurturance.  It is in this unbreakable garden where little babes keep all their desires, needs, wants, fears, love.  You become the everything...I too am a babe's everything.      

THE MAMA DIARIES

Dear Mamas,

Eight years ago, after the birth of my first babe, Charlotte Harlow Laine, my blogging journey began.  It was  a way to chronicle my day-to- day experience of loving, nurturing, educating, laughing and raising babes.  The Mess in Messenger was its name. My simple writings described the literal and figurative mess of being a mama and married to an ex-bike messenger.  

Documenting the beautiful chaos in our everyday, allowed me to reflect on those fleeting moments of childhood.  It was also through these writings that I felt heard, connected and the most happy.  I could share all that was so close to my heart free of judgment.  The blog evolved from its humble beginnings.  As both the babe and this mama grew, connections and relationships were forged.  And with each subsequent birth of my babes, my desire to nurture mamas in their prenatal and postpartum journeys through emotional support and art took hold of my heart.

ivy & wren is the full circle personal journey and  collection of all that ignites my soul:  postpartum care, emotional support, expression through art, dedication to birth arts.  It is not only my desire to have this as an open space to share my loves but to welcome my heart to you and your journey and awe full mess in becoming a Mama. Our journeys may be our own, but they are similar. Full of love but sometimes consumed by chaos. Maintaining ourselves as individuals while supporting the growth of our littles, is a blessing but difficult navigation. It is a task that we share but one with little guidance and an adventure that we have undertaken without understanding. My goal is to hopefully inspire and share the truth in its beauty.  

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As I write this welcome to you, one babe nestled into my breast, four others enjoying the ground beneath their feet, I am full of gratitude.  Gratitude for my babes.  Gratitude for the fragility and purity that fills my heart.  Gratitude for the journey. Gratitude for the lessons.  Gratitude for you.

I hope you find comfort, joy, support and love in ivy & wren.  Let us walk this path together and may our "hearts always be open to little birds who are the secrets of living." (E.E. Cummings)

Love to all,

The Mama