Beastly Affection

Your black coal fur clumps in the corner.

My grumbling echoes off the walls.

You whimper.

I scream.

You’re subdued.

I’m constantly running.

Opposites in character and form.

I often mumble; your pacing and persistence, my chagrin.

Yet now, as your health deteriorates

and surgery is tangible

while our wallet is not,

I think of all the ways these past two years have been unfair.

Forgive me.

Please know that as I let you go, or even just preparing to, I’m wanting to hold on

and in my heart, I always will.

 

 

 

 

Slated Works

The canvas sat, bent, in the heap of rubble.

A can of disregarded materials and used, spent purchases.

Above the disposal vessel,

a present perched proudly.

Quivering lips questioned.

Why that gift and not my painted words of gratitude?

Like the piece, my heart was put to rubbish.

Then and now the thought does ever plague—

Mama, do you love me like you do her? Did you ever?

When will I ever receive your affections?

Should I just toss those expectations like the treasures I bestowed to you?

 

I know forgiveness calls

but somewhere rests the unsettled best,

my aim to get your approval;

but for naught

and in it my esteem diminished.

 

Rivalry’s Stamp

The sun’s rays beamed,

A bright day in California summer.

As the lazy afternoon droned on, the truck eased in, stopping to deposit the daily packages.

Inside the abode peels of conflict arose.

The eldest raced barefoot outside.

She collected the envelopes and came back in.

Upon reentry, she was greeted by a ferocious beast.

The angered child waved a blade, threatening to take life or limb.

A chase ensued.

That day began an endless pursuit;

a lifelong dance to retrieve whatever right was thought usurped.

The steel still glimmers

ready to chip, divide, and cut further the sister seal loosed that day.

A New Season Arises: Spring 2017

Petals sprout out from beneath the blanket of white.

A slumbering earth awakening, new.

The earth tilts and arises the dead,

life called to action.

A breeze blows and trees blossom,

the whole of creation shakes off the dregs of hibernation.

Meanwhile, my soul remains stagnant;

dross-like

speckled snow that clings to remain.

While the world springs forward in color,

the uneasiness of a soul thought burdening

seeks the solitude of a world lost in  eternal silence,

the echo of an endless winter.

Birthing Empowerment

http://naturalparentsnetwork.com/celebrating-international-womens-day-with-kids/

Today is International Women’s Day.  It is an important day to remember women.  While I think abstaining from work might be in poor form, I think we can still celebrate women and their contributions to society.  Honoring women begins with how we speak about them.  Women, it begins with how we speak about ourselves.

For as long as I can remember I have been a self-deprecating female.  My self-esteem is often quite low.  I grew up around weight talk.  Aesthetic beauty included the bodily frame of a human.  Being mocked for height or pinched around the waist I began the path towards loathing my body.

When I grew up and got married I had the dream of becoming a mother.  My husband and I set out to have kids about 6 months into our marriage.  We tried and we tried and we tried.  After four years of anxiety, testing, and sadness, we conceived!  I was pregnant.  My gut plumped.  Then after 5 short weeks, we lost the baby we had prayed so hard for.

My body was broken.  Why couldn’t I, or rather, this body do what it was supposed to do?

Thankfully, God blessed us with another pregnancy.  I carried to term and on March 24, 2015, after a 13+ hour labor, Willow Christine Eisbacher entered this world.  Not even 2 years later, on August 3, 2016, after an arduous 7 hour or so labor, Fiona Joy Eisbacher made her debut.  My body finally did what countless women before me had done.

My friend, Kate Pare, had used midwives for her children, children older than mine.  I was born by C-section.  My parents are firm advocates for medicinal care rather than natural care.  They see the degree and trust the doctors’ advice rather than research for themselves, more often than not.  I had learned through Kate to ask questions, especially when it came to my care.  Only I can be an advocate for the care I, and subsequently my body, receives.

I learned that the health care system is saturated with male opinion.  Most obstetrics and gynecology professionals I knew were men.  Why are men running a field that a woman can solely perform?   Women are being told that they can’t do labor themselves.  Labor is portrayed as painful.  If you don’t take medicine, you are weird, crazy.  We are told to numb ourselves from the pain.  Women are not told the benefits of Oxycontin that is released after a natural labor , a chemical that assists in mother-child bonding.

Please understand, there is a time and place for intervention.  C-sections have been used to save the lives of mothers and babies.  Epidurals have assisted women to deliver a baby when the pain was too unbearable to persist.  Pitocin has been used to augment contractions when labor stalled and wasn’t progressing.  There are benefits to medicine.  It has its time and place.  The problem arises when we use it too often, when we are sending a message that women are inadequate to deliver babies naturally, the way women have delivered babies for centuries.

I was glad I had midwives.  I had women cheering me on.  These women were skilled in their profession.  If I needed emergency care, they were equipped to deliver it or place me in the hands of someone who could perform necessary surgeries.  The problem isn’t emergency care itself, but rather treating everyday occurrence as an emergency, telling women they are less than worthy.  Sadly, this is a message we hear too often.  We are told we aren’t as strong as men, we aren’t as smart.  Women are meant to be quiet and in the home watching children.  This is what we have heard for years.

While men do have more testosterone and this does make them physically stronger typically, there are women who are more physically fit than some men.  Women can be just as smart as a male.  We might be more emotional due to estrogen levels in our system, but this does not impede our ability to contribute to highly intellectual fields like those found in STEM professions.

Women are not beautiful because of their physical body.  They can be.  Also, women come in all different shapes and sizes.  All women are beautiful in their own way.  Women have much to offer.  They are wives, mothers, daughters, and sisters.  We are an array of contributors to society to…in politics, science, art, economics, etc.  It is time we give women a voice.  Over the years we’ve started to give women platforms, greater influence in society, but we still have a long way to go, especially in countries like India and China, countries that abort babies simply because they are female.

I am glad to have had women by my side while I labored.  I’m grateful to God for blessing me with children and the ability to deliver them naturally, without medication.  I had hated my body for so long.  In labor and delivery, I found strength and power.  Labor empowered me and for the first time, I loved my body.  I was amazed at what I was able to do, awed by God’s intricate design of the human body.

This is a sentiment of gratitude for women that used their education and experiences to give me a voice.  A voice to speak for other women and to finally be able to speak well about myself and my body.  Thank you Midwives of NJ.  May I help be an advocate for female care as you were for me.  I know your presence was incalculable in healing my self-esteem and recognizing my worth as a woman and more importantly, a daughter of God.

FYI:  There is a March for birth practices coming up.  Check the Midwives of NJ website.

Ring Around the Rosy

Ashes, Ashes, we all fall down.

Die to yourself and in righteousness arise.

Repent, Renew.

Rejoice in the resurrected Christ.

Reflect on the rebellion that led us astray

and his cross which reconciled us again, to God.

Community confess

that which you’ve offended or taken offense to,

all the ways in which pride still strains devotion

and selfishness divides.

Join hands in unity, a holy communion,

laying down ourselves and taking up the cause of other.

Let us see the Holy Spirit ablaze in each other,

knowing that the only way to fare through earthly life

is bound together as neighbor and in worship of Christ divine.

 

 

Wisdom is found on the lips of the discerning, but a rod is for the back of one who has no sense.”- Prov. 10:13

I read this verse last night, after provoking my mother to anger again.  I antagonized, to be fair.  I have jealousy.  My mother’s character parallels my sister.  They are close.  We are not.  My heart aches at the thought, the aim of futile approval addiction and my life spent in such pursuit.

My bruised ego assaults the Spirit that calls me to extreme forgiveness.  Radical love is one that turns the other cheek, is willing to forgive when everything in us wants to rage, to spread our wrath.  Pacifism in all our relationships, not just the battlefields, goals so contrary to American idealism.  We are even to be gentle in our speech towards others.

When we let our tongues loose, we will be beaten down.  We need to be discerning in what we say and how we say it.  Words are important, they are the language to communities, the language of the heart.  Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.  May we be discerning in what we say and how we say it.  We must have words aptly spoken, not in defense of our selfish nature or simply a resounding gong.  We must realize that Christ truly intercedes on our behalf.  He defends the weak, the mocked, and most of all, our broken hearts.

I pray this Lenten season I will be still and know that Christ is God.  I want to take time to reflect, to be transformed.  I often find myself questioning how different I really am from my secular counterparts.  Too often I grumble.  I complain, I get angry (and not righteously because it isn’t in defense of the gospel, but when I feel an affront), I gossip, I, more often than not, only trust God when things are going well.  I want to praise him in the storms and deserts, not just when I uncover affluent blessings.  I don’t want a prosperity or social justice gospel.  I want Christ and Christ alone!  I don’t want to care what the world thinks.  I want to share this radical love and I can’t share it if I don’t live it.

I want to live the Beatitudes and be guided by the fruits of the Spirit.  Oh God, sow seeds worthy of eternal blessing in me that I might be a laborer that sacrifices the bountiful harvest for you.  Grant me wisdom to speak the gospel boldly, without shame.  In that, may you say, “Good job my faithful servant.”  Who am I living for?  Man or God?  May I not be a resounding gong, except for praise to you, the Holy One, the one true God now and forever.  Help me to love others as you have loved me.

I realize already that my words have been too many.  Let my words be few, rendered only in holy praise to you.  I don’t need to fight my extrovert nature, you gave it to me for a purpose.  However, harness it so that your Holy Spirit is ablaze and fruits are seen, harvested such that only the resurrected Christ is preached.

Help me God to Love my neighbor as myself and the Lord, my God, above all else for this sums up the Law and the Prophets, the true goal of any life well lived.  Let me die to myself as I live for you, a bond servant to Christ and assisting all communities I find myself in this side of heaven.

Create beauty from these ashes.

I want a life rendered only for your purposes oh God.  That, dear God, is my song and my dance, twirling in the circle of this life. Help me to blossom into the woman you made me to be, reaping the rewards I can only receive in Heaven and being fully satisfied in you alone.

I’ve prattled long enough, not making much sense.  Grant me discernment and wisdom above all else that I might truly die to this flesh nature.

May I arise from earthly ashes to I stand in silent awe of the Christ who resurrected from the tomb.  May I live every day proclaiming this good news, the only news that can ignite strewn ashes and faint/crushed spirits.

Be still already and know he is God!