Wednesday, July 21, 2010

On needing people

I don't think we're meant to be independent. I think that people are meant to share joys and difficulties with regularity, not just in trying times. I honestly believe we need people in our lives in order to help us live.

I'm an extreme introvert; being social doesn't come natural for me. Asking for help is hard for me. It's easier for me to try something on my own or even bemoan what I lack. Recognizing that I need help and that people actually want to/need to help is one of the biggest lessons I'm learning at this moment in my life. Sometimes I don't even realize I need an outstretched hand or shoulder to lean on. The leaning, the touching, the talking, the sharing, the confirmation of one's feelings, are essential to successful living in general, but even to just making it through another moment, another day.

People help wipe tears and make you just a little lighter, a little more connected to the world, to yourself, to the land of the living.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

On swimming lessons with the baby

I had the greatest moment with the baby today. He started swimming class today and he took to the water as though it were a big bathtub. While the other kids clung to their parents, he tried to venture out on his own, pulling away from my tightening grasp. He was confident and enthusiastic.

I usually just love watching him piddle around the house, on the playground,or just out and about. He loves to climb on things and throw things. He loves to make sure people know he's there, by tapping them on their knees. He's a joy to watch.

However, for the first time in a very long time, I felt like I was really with him--like I was a part of his fun, happiness, exploration, instead of just a bystander taking it all in. It was an intimate experience, like we were in this thing together. I held him under his arms and let him lay belly up on the water as I pulled him along. The droplets on his eyelids only made his eyes seem wider than normal. He was fully engaged because I was there. His laugh as he splashed the water on me and his classmates made my heart skip a beat. Even his sweet baby cough when he swallowed too much water was the infamous Renee' Zellwegger line "you had me at hello." This small child who can only say one word at a time, has had me since I knew he was in my womb and it only intensifies with each splash, and smile.

I'm not sure how it happened that I could be so blessed to have him in my life and to be able to be in the water with him as he takes swimming lessons.