Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Thinking, that's all: A blanket

A soft blue glow dimly gives light to the dark recesses of an inky backstage area.

We sit hip to hip, perched in chairs that form an oval, silent except for the wild beating of hearts, the quick whispers of courage breathed out to the first voice making her way toward the center stage.

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She's first to bring life to the black print on white as she shares her story.

I find myself holding my breath tight inside my lungs, keeping vigil for her before I realize that she's got it and slowly exhale it into the soft shadows.

I hang on her words, her threads dangling in the air and grab on tight.

She brings her story to a close and a round, full-bodied applause breaks out from the audience and fills seemingly ever inch of empty space in the theater.

And the backstage?

The backstage is drenched.

It is drenched with applause, and it is weeping with awe and love

because she has broken the silence with her voice.

She has taken the first threads, added her own and she has begun weaving them all together through gifting us with her own.

The words we've all written about motherhood -- about how it's changed, shaped, grown, morphed us, made us-- come quickly, deliberately thereafter, single thread after single thread added

hers

and his

and hers

and hers

and hers

and then ours.

We are next.

As part of the only duet in the show, I've long realized that this story I'm about to give voice, this thread I'm about to add to the collection, isn't only mine.

Together

It's hers, too.

But it's not until I step onto center stage that I truly realize it's not just mine and hers either.

There is laughter, deep thundering laughter, as we give comedic voice to the loneliness of mothering in our day in age.

And I know, in the laughter, that our stories, our threads have been grasped, they've been picked up and woven together with others

that these stories don't just belong to the people in center stage, the people giving them voice.

No.

The laughter coupled with tears tells a story of its own: that these stories are all of ours

that motherhood has given us all a song swelling in our chest in some way or another

that these threads were meant to be woven together.

Our lives, our stories weren't meant to simply be separate, dangling threads


but rather a blanket of warmth spread across shivering shoulders.

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Sunday night in Chicago, I snuggled deep into the comforts of that blanket in the best of company.

25 comments:

  1. As always, your writing takes my breath away. Just wow. Thank you so much for sharing your take on this experience that was bigger than all of us. xoxo

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    1. Your words leave deep imprints. Thanks, Melisa. For everything.

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  2. How do I say anything about what we did on Sunday night that hasn't been said? I am so glad you were part of all that - that you're part of all THIS - that I have come to know, admire, and respect you. HUG.

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    1. I second what Lou says, because I'm crying. So beautiful! Thank You

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    2. And much more of the same sentiments to you both, Steph and Lou. Much much more. So glad to know you and have shared this space and place in time with you both.

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  3. I love every single one of you in my village!

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  4. Sounds wonderful! "Our lives, our stories weren't meant to simply be separate, dangling threads but rather a blanket of warmth spread across shivering shoulders." Oh my! I want to cry right now :)

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    1. When we come together, yes, there is so much beauty I can't help but cry, too.

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  5. AWESOME!!! And I was so glad I was able to see it. Thanks for being a part of my village. :-)

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    1. No. Thank YOU for being part of my village. And being part of my backless bra support team. ;-)

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  6. Replies
    1. There are no words, M. Just thank you.

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  7. Replies
    1. It was so nice to see you, Dwana!

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  8. Stunning words to capture the essence of the night. Oh - and thanks again for letting me eat off your plate.

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  9. Really lovely expression of the experience. Thanks so much.

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    1. Oh, Ann. Thank you doesn't cut it ...

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  11. Amazing, Hyacynth. And I nodded several times throughout your piece, every time I heard it...

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    1. Thank you for giving us a chance to voice our story, Tracey. You ladies ... I'm so grateful.

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  12. We need another show of just our wrap-ups! This was beautiful. Thank you~

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  13. a blanket of warmth--what a beautiful picture of grace and community! i hope you'll be posting video. wish i could have shared space:)

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There's nothing better than good conversation ... but not while talking to myself. Will you play a part in this discussion?

AND will you pretty please have your email linked to your account or leave it for me so I can respond?

Thanks for taking the time to make these thoughts into conversation.

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