We have all been amused by watching a baby roll over for the first time, haven't we?
The proud parents, kneeling nearby, grins on their faces. What an accomplishment!
Of course, there is that period of time when they are soooo very close to figuring it out. But they just don't have enough "umph" to finish the roll.
We parents just sit there and watch with anticipation....to be proud parents. Knowing that this is our first opportunity to let our kids be successful. They need to learn how to do things on their own, right?
Eventually, due to perseverance, they get it. The roll is complete! They did it! We parents grin even more....and clap....and more than likely have gotten it on video (in my case my huge video camera - which was quite compact at the time but today more than likely on an iPhone and immediately put on Facebook or YouTube to share with the world).
We celebrate and forget - forget that now they need to roll back over. The baby lies on his/her belly...stuck.
Have you ever wondered what they are thinking at that exact moment? What they are feeling?
I imagine although we think it is an enormous accomplishment, the baby is thinking "uh oh....now what. I'm stuck."
Why in the world am I thinking of this?
Unfortunately, this past 18 months I have been feeling very stuck. I feel as though I rolled over and can't figure out how to roll back. I start to feel like I'm moving forward, then I hit a stand-still, perhaps slip backwards a little, then bounce forward again, just to start the vicious cycle all over again.
This has been what my life has been like for the past 8 years - what the aftermath of cancer has created in my life, in my kids lives, in the circle around me - my poor friends have been the recipients of the good and bad.
A difficult and unfortunate break-up caused me to question quite a bit about myself, my ability to share my emotions ever again, to trust ever again, and of course the common question of "what is wrong with me?" 18 months later and that one unfortunate slip in trusting others continues to erode my confidence in myself. It has caused me to doubt myself about a multitude of things each day, and has caused me to put up walls that will more than likely never come down. Again a vicious cycle....self-doubt, lack of trust, walls causes loneliness.....which causes sadness, self-doubt, etc etc etc.
The continued loneliness that surrounds me - especially on weekends - just makes it worse. Everywhere I go, I seem to see people together....and I wonder why I don't deserve that happiness.
No, this isn't a pity party....and I know not everyone else is happy either. But, being in a state of being "stuck" in life makes you wonder about a lot of things.
So why am I share this with you today of all days? Why today is Father's Day.
Which makes me think of my father (of course) and my late spouse, the wonderful father to my three children.
Both provided me unconditional support - although I will admit it has taken being a parent myself to recognize all the support and guidance my own father provided me. Both provided me confidence in myself. Neither ever doubted my abilities. Both had bucket load of confidence in me and my abilities. Both never saw obstacles in my way. Both loved me unconditionally.
I suppose both would have assumed that that baby would be able to roll back over effortlessly.
BUT, I am resolved to become unstuck. I am frustrated that I have allowed life to begin passing me by.
And I realize that both my father and Brian would be upset with me for doubting my abilities.
Do you know what is funny about this situation? As a parent, I never allow my children to doubt their abilities. They are capable of doing anything they want.
And SO AM I!
I described today to someone with this exact quote - "Kids going about day as normal. Me....sadness lurks underneath of what today could have been when I see others."
And to that I say - "DAMN YOU CANCER!"
More importantly, to the Father's out there (and father figures) I say this - "Never ever doubt the impact you are having on another's life. The love and support you provide will always be an amazing safety net to your children."
Thank you Dad for providing me my safety net....and Brian for adding on to that net while creating one for each of our own children. It is this safety net and my awareness of it that it going to get me to roll back over.