Wednesday, July 29, 2009

And Still They Rise

As I watched her, sitting in the mortuary’s pew looking down at her month old baby, she seemed serene… truly at peace. I wondered if she felt relief knowing her mom no longer was suffering, and she no longer had to question why her mother chose drugs over her. She held her baby girl with such pride as she held her up to introduce her to me, not a tear in her eyes. She will write a poem one day, about this day, and maybe then she will cry. But today, she is strong, and she has to be, because she is going to be the mom she never had…

He sits with his shoulders slumped in shame, arms covered in tats, laughing nervously, admitting that smoking helps him not have feelings. He doesn’t want to feel, he explains, it “scares me” he says… “And that is why I come here, because I can talk about what I am thinking and feeling, and then I can go out there with ‘them’ and feel ok”. We make invitations: “Call me when you are thinking about doing something stupid”, “I’ll take you to meetings, and never judge you”, “We can talk about your art, and how that can help you step into your own”… “What do you say?” “I wanna try” he says sitting up.

“Are you nervous?” I ask as we drive to where she will be living for the next 30 days. “Yeah” she says giggling. I tell her I was nervous too when I went into sober living. I ask her when the last time she saw her son, she tells me April. “That’s why I am doing this, so I can get him back”. I remember her as a little girl, getting off of the helicopter giggling with her mentor. It was the first time she had flown; her eyes were lit up with excitement, but old with a lifetime of pain. She was only 12 years old, and she trusted no one. We were going have to pass her test. Today, she is choosing to live, and as I hugged her before I left, I whispered into her ear: “I am so proud of you”. “Me too” she whispered back.

And still they rise....


Follow me on twitter @hoolieboo

No comments: