March 17, 2018. Photo: Paul Schatzkin

This time last year, this exact date, we were dunking our little guy in the Harpeth River with my Mom and my Dad and my sister and her daughter and my brother and Jamey’s entire family around us. Jamey and I were standing waist deep in the freezing water with Huck, surrounded by our beautiful preachers, led by Becc
a Stevens, and we all dunked ourselves (with me holding Huck) into the frigid river. Halle-freaking-lujah. Then we dried off and ate barbecue. I’ll never forget it. It was the last time I’d see my father before we knew he was dying of cancer.

This time two years ago…Jamey was graduating from Belmont University with a Masters in English, in one of those long robes with a Master’s cowl. I was tearing up with pride and a bit of envy (he kind of lords it over me that he’s the highest degreed one of us now). Huck was wriggly and still slightly reddish. Just a bean.

This morning, I woke up and had breakfast on the TN River with my in-laws, then I ran around the field with Huck yelling “neigh neigh” as we ran toward the brown and white horse in the year across the field from Mimi and Cappy’s house. The horse came over and nodded her head down so Huck and I could pet her. Then we ran back and rolled down the hill over and over.

Things have been shrouded in question and doubt and fear and new discovery. Loss and grief and ups and downs. New meds. Crying and trying to wrestle the past into something I can swallow. But you know, it’s not DARK. It’s not bad. It’s actually an amazing time. The uncomfortable is always welcome in this home. Because if there’s anything we know here, it’s that when things get funky, that means change is coming. And when change is coming, that means the hand of something Divine is at work.

It was not easy giving birth to this 7 pound monkey 2 years ago. My body was ripped apart and I sometimes still feel sharp pains where muscles and tendons had to learn to weave themselves back into place. I will never have the flat stomach I thought I had. In fact, as the years go by, things get soft and the muscles get lazy. The grey comes in. But it was more than worth it.

This is my favorite photo. It was taken by a dear friend the first full day with Huck. I can still smell that skin if I close my eyes.

Happy Mother’s Day.

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