My husband and I are in Israel for the month—a pre-move to Israel trip, a see our soldier son trip, a get some sunshine but it’s raining today trip.
I have been thinking a lot about mothers lately. My mother. Me as mother. My children and their thoughts about me as mother. My friends as mothers and friends who have mothers and struggle with their mothers. How we judge our mothers. And other mothers.
I was reminded recently by a good friend to err on the side of compassion when exploring the mother question. I was reminded that having compassion does not preclude us from naming an injustice, but it holds us all in love rather than judgment.
It’s a hard thing, to hold conflicting emotions and experiences, but recalling what Ada Limon said about writing vulnerably, it’s where the conversation begins. This is where we roll up our sleeves and start the challenging soul work.
I came across a beautiful poem today, Beannacht by John O’Donohue. The poem begins with a dedication to Josie, his mother, and explores all the ways he wishes that she would feel love and support—from the earth, ocean, and sky. And he ties it all together in the final stanza:
And so may a slow
wind work these words of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.
Words matter. Thoughts matter. So I am wondering, today, what can I do and say to weave an invisible cloak of love?