When I was a girl, I imagined the moon held the secrets of the earth and stars and all the creatures of the world. My home was a place of science and discovery, but not faith, and so I held this wish in my heart quietly – the wish that my prayers could be heard. At night, I would share my secrets. Moon, I would say, gingerly airing out the depths of me. I knew I could hear the moon whisper back to me, Yes.
Like the expanding and waning moon, I daily shifted, and resisted consciousness. I made proclamations about my being, but I ran from reality and love and solid ground and fixed points for an eternity it seems. I longed deeply for their presence in my life, but fear was stronger than desire and so I leapt, bolted, fled. I often gazed at the moon, silently releasing the contents of my inner world, hoping she would provide an answer. This twisted abandon was the night of my life, the quiet, seeking darkness of my existence.
His strong arms and wide chest caught me on a sunny, crisp afternoon, and I paused for awhile in his embrace. He was wild and starry-eyed and magic, and I was surprised to call him my own. Our world was deeply passionate, sensual, humorous, and unsteady. It felt on the verge of perfection or destruction at all moments, and I often wondered aloud if I was still running, chasing the horizon and dawn’s needed radiance.
Stars are born following a collapse, and so was I. An implosion of sorts, as I fell into myself with the creation of life, with my daughter growing beneath my heart like a secret. For many months, I looked at moon, listening for her reverberating solace. Yes, was the reply, tinny and distant. This was not the familiar moon, the voice in my head, but rather a more tender, purer melody. It began as an echo, and grew into a whisper, a cough, a hiss, a sigh. I couldn’t make out the words, but I know now that it was she – my child, my moon. Yes, she said.
In the earliest days, her sounds were still foreign, and the music inside her heart was muffled by the loudness of the new world. The fast-moving cars and big ideas of the outside shook the walls of our home, and it was weeks it seemed before we came up for air. In those days, I and the beings around me sought to calm to rising swell deep in my gut with shushing and warm hands on my arms. The embraced me and my girl, and they helped to shroud me, shield me, wrap me in the velvety darkness of familiarity and constancy.
And so her voice grew strong and steady, and the veil was thrown off. The precious sigh that had overtaken my ears since my daughter’s birth was her self calling to me. Her earthly presence made me strikingly aware of her birthright: a conscious guide, a mama in all senses, to lead and carry and lift and honor her being. I looked to the sky, and whispered to the moon, knowing that to fully become mama, I must step beyond the tranquilizing darkness and into the auspicious light. Yes, she said, and my path was written.
Awakening is a tiny crack in the wounded, yearning soul where light slips in and stretches the bounds of awareness. To walk across the bridge of awareness, to become conscious of a longing heart or fluttering spirit, is to step into the light of awakening. It blesses the body with warmth and hope. And yet, it is merely the beginning. I walked across that bridge alone, with my child strapped to my chest, our heartbeats loud and defiant and synchronized. Though I often look back, I cannot journey back, for on this side the land is lush and green.
Transitioning from awakening to rebirth is a jagged path, and no easy feat. Flowery words cannot decorate the painful and disorienting anguish of acute heartache. The birth of my moon child was, for me, a glorious awakening and a tremendous, crushing blow to the fragile love I held tightly in my hands. Oh, how I desired forever, and how deafening the silence of a lonely existence.
I did not leave my lover because I lacked love. I left because I became aware of the work within me left undone. I left because I took a solemn, private oath to embrace all that I am meant for and to be. I left because awareness is a beautiful reckoning, but true ownership and love of Self is deliberate, persistent, resolute commitment to healing, reflective, mindful, daily growth. I was a creature wrapped in fear: fear of supposed failure in love and creation, fear of achievement, fear of acknowledgment, fear of untapped strength and womanly power, fear of my voice, fear of my true heart. I was merely running from true awareness of myself and the infinite, divine possibility within me. I was terrified to embrace the full power of my being and so I drowned it in late nights and insecurities and misplaced affections. I had for so long separated my lunar secrets from my daily actions that my being was fractured and wanting. I desired illuminating lightness of spirit and purpose. The impossible thought of looking into my child’s eyes with anything but total clarity behind my own sent me searching, and I am reborn, refreshed, renewed.
I've yet to settle into my full realness. I believe the greatest piece of art, the most authentic life, the sweetest victory one can ever create is an honest, true Self, and a life built around it. In my walk towards this moment I have discovered that being "true to myself" does not mean a steadfast adherence to one version of my life, my body, my thoughts, but rather an acceptance of the ever-developing goddess within. Rebirth is a continuing practice, a daily meditation, a choice we mamas make time and again. The business of rebirthing is actively choosing fullness and actualization in each glorious moment. And so, I am a fiercely unfinished being, with fingers and toes in many pots. I dabble and dip, determined to discover the waiting pieces of myself, like water molecules floating through space, hopeful a collection will gather and rain upon my open soul.
Once I was a girl, staring at the sky, praying for a response. I am a woman now. An ever-changing, incomplete, striving, aching, pulsating woman, and I hear the moon’s voice strong and clear not in the distance, but within. The moon points to me and says, Mama, and I say YES.