One Year (Mother Psalm 9)
By Rachel Barenblat
A psalm of ascent
When the doctor brought you
through my narrow places
I was as in a dream: tucked behind
my closed eyes, chanting silently
we are opening up in sweet surrender.
The night before we left the hospital
I wept: didn’t they know
I had no idea what to do with you?
Even newborn-sized clothes
loomed around you, vast and ill-fitting.
I couldn’t convince you to latch
without a nurse there to reposition.
But we got into the car, the old world
made terrifying and new, and
in time I learned your language.
I had my own narrow places ahead,
the valley of the postpartum shadow.
Nights when I would hand you over,
mutely grateful to anyone willing
to rock you down, to suffer your cries...
But those who sow in tears
will reap in joy, and you
are the joy I never knew I didn’t have.
I have paced these long hours
bearing a baby on my shoulder
and now I am home in rejoicing,
bearing you, my own harvest.
From The Velveteen Rabbi.
I spent Mother's Day with much of my family, and it was really nice to be doing that for a happy occasion! Adam and my mother were working at Hebrew school in the morning, so I slept late and did some futzing around in the internet, then we drove with my parents to the College Park Aviation Museum, where we met Paul's parents. After visiting the museum, we went and picked up Daniel -- who is in the middle of finals, so he couldn't join us earlier -- for dinner at Plato's Diner, which has pretty Grecian garden decorations all around and where I had a very good feta cheese omelet with veggie sausage and home fries.
We all went back to Daniel's dorm room so he could show my in-laws his computer and we could pick up his winter clothes so we don't have to pack those to bring home later in the week. Then we came home for Harry's Law, whose main story was a nail-biter but whose second story, about a man whose brother desperately needed blood but wasn't allowed to give him blood because he was gay, was the really emotional one (the no-gay-men-ever restriction is pure bigotry, as the episode pointed out). My mother gave me a Brighton charm and my family gave me Pride and Prejudice on Blu-Ray, so I had a very nice day!