I was sitting on my little girl’s bed.
Decked out in pink and multiple pillows, she sat underneath the crook of my mommy-wing. Next to me, on the other side, was my newborn little girl.
I sat and looked at them—I just looked and sat—and I felt within my tender new-again mommy-heart this birth of contentment.
This swell of overwhelming joy crept up from underneath my once-again nursing breast. I was cloaked within this feeling of fulfillment and I remembered how so much lately I had felt cloaked in despair.
Cloaked in the reality of multiple dirty diapers and no sleep and frayed, exhausted nerves. And then, looking over at her on the one side and her on the other, I recognized what I have within my life—genuine love.
I’ve had a renewed self-motto lately: Choose love.
Because it’s easy to choose grumpiness.
It’s easy to choose cranky, bitter, held-hostage feelings of jealousy or comparison or general moodiness. I’ve recognized, too, that much of my moodiness stems from me not living from this place of present purity; like I felt right there, on that pink bed, with my two little daughters by my side.
Because it’s also easy to realize when life is sticky and uncomfortable; when relationships are challenged and strained; when people are unpleasant and unkind—but it’s equally simple to choose love.
And that’s it—I choose love.
I choose to let tears fall down my cheeks when my feelings are hurt.
I choose to let my heart be worn on my sleeve, even when it feels invisible to the world I inhabit.
I am not invisible.
I am loud. I am raging. I’m a swollen river beneath my nursing mother chest, and this river does occasionally overflow.
It overflows with murky, muddy waters that leak and seep hatred and sadness—but that’s not the real me, that flows like smooth, glassy, quiet water underneath these often overwhelming currents of life.
And I do choose love—it’s a choice.
I can choose to let my unexpressed feelings build and pile up until they come out all wrong and not how I really feel them anyways—with ugly words and angry glares—or I can choose to authentically share myself; to release myself from this human, flesh-draped cage and live moment to moment, free.
There’s this song that I grew up listening to called Puke + Cry by Dinosaur Jr. I feel like this song lately.
I feel this unburdened, deep need to release everything that I’ve held on tightly and unnecessarily to all of these years.
There’s another song, Glosoli by Sigur Ros, and its last two minutes make me want to Puke + Cry. It makes me want to let go; truly let go.
To me, letting go is something I do not do enough—it’s living moment by moment and from my fragile, wounded, strong, resilient soul instead of from false strength, fear and confinement.
How many of us live from this minute that just past or the one that’s happening in an hour and not from this second, this new second, this now second that’s right here, slapping us in the face to feel everything it has to offer.
Yet that’s the hard part: feeling everything; feeling it all.
Because for those of us who are sensitive, empathetic and emotional, there’s usually an awful lot to feel.
And it’s scary. It’s horrifying, really, to feel that these two little girls sitting on either side of me in a pink and pillow-laden bed are my world and that my world, tomorrow or the next day or the one after that, would be completely different if something happened to them.
But that’s life. And if I spend my now moments waiting for what might or could happen, I lose the magic that surrounds me every waking minute.
Still, for those of us (for all of us), who have ever felt true pain, there’s something sickly beautiful nestled discreetly—perversely—inside: this dark reality that beauty resides everywhere, even within an ugly, ugly truth.
And what I choose to observe and own is what winds up making my reality—I have the power to choose my own reality.
But life is hard. (No one who ever feels it all will tell it differently.)
It’s also gut-wrenchingly gorgeous when we let go and let life in; when we let it happen. (And this is what makes me want to puke + cry.)
And my tiny daughter plays joyously on the floor near me while my other, newer daughter swings softly close by—that moment that gave me such complete elation has already passed. I’m so glad I saw it and took it in, even though it’s gone.
This article was first published by Be You Media Group.