She keeps the night watch.
And when morning beeps loud from the old white clock, she is met with a fever that persists and an event for work that looms large. She wishes there were a decision to make. Stay home and nurse her heart back to health? Or leave for work and leave her sick, feverish heart behind?
She is left with no choice but the latter.
It comes as no surprise that the battery on her cell phone is drained before the clock strikes acceptable time. She messages all the details the doctor could need. Times and temps and dosage of medicine. All straight from her memory. Or was it her heart? The two are so closely connected the seperation is but a blur.
She anxiously waits for the diagnosis. Her heart races. She paces. She grips her phone like one would cling to a life preserver.
Her mind knows beyond all reason that her baby is in capable hands. More than capable. Hands that adore the child and a heart that feels just the same.
And yet, her heart is ridden with guilt.
Guilt for leaving. And the same measure for enjoying her work.
The smile plastered on her face attempts to mask the worry and guilt. But there are some that know. Because we are all passengers in the same boat, braving the choppy waters of home and work. We strap on our heels and walk and talk as if our hearts are fully engaged at the office. Knowing that deep down, no matter how much we accomplish within the walls of a career, our hearts will always be tethered to home. To the very place where our tiny people hold tight to all we are.
So, today, as I gazed at the faces of mommies who sail these waters with me, I boldly approached the foot of the Cross and let go of the guilt. I found strength to steady my quivering heart by leaning on those that know the struggle. And I found hope by glancing to the shore, where the brave mommies stand, waving and clapping and cheering for those of us still on the journey. For they are the ones who survived the first leg of the journey. By letting go of my guilt, I free up my hands to cheer and clap and wave to the ones who just boarded the ship. Hands that offer as support for the times when they feel as they will sink under the pressure of guilt. Hands that can lift them up and reassure them that it really does take a village.
Are you a passenger in the same boat with us mommies? Or do you stand on the shore, cheering us on?