But something happened today that made me realize how much everything comes full circle: the things I dealt with as a child are the same issues I have inherited in parenting my own children. Despite struggling to avoid some of those pitfalls and working on my stuff, today I was smacked in the face with it.
Ultimately, I can't control what another person - even (especially?) someone I love - believes. I can only be here and hold those I care for in lovingkindness.
This is a poem I wrote 5 years ago that I dug out as a reminder.
Unsealing the Records
When you were born blue
eyes owl round, dark downed
there was no one to ask if loss
too was passed through placenta and blood.
Sixteen now, when you meet my gaze, looking
glass familiar, no relative
wonders who you take after. Born
on your grandmother's birthday, one more
gift for a woman terrified of too much
fortune. I was far younger than you
when I learned some questions were weapons
even in the right hands. How words
could be strung on a necklace
or garrote. I swear there is nothing
you could say as sharp or shameful
as silence. I am here.
Ask me anything.
-- LJ Cohen, 2010