Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Begin the Bee Blog

I woke up at 5:25 this morning and decided to blog. My daughter came over last night and told me about a terrible anxiety attack she had yesterday while sitting in class at college. My heart broke for her. We talked. As I spoke I felt the unbearable weight of my words as they left my lips. Are these the right words? Will they guide her? Will she take them the right way? Am I wrong? Am I telling her things that will resonate harmfully later when she looks back on this moment seeking help for a present distress? How the power of being her mother weighed on me, like the weight of the whole world of mothers' words weigh on the whole world of children - infants to adults.

Is not a mother the ultimate healer? comforter? source of security and relief from the world's woes? But mothers are also wounders, harming their sweet pups with words that hurt instead of heal. The power of the mother's ability to wound is so terrifying to me. With every word I felt that weight, and hoped to only heal and comfort and let her know how very, very, very much I love her. With that strain behind every word - the accute need in her eyes - my heart stretched yet again - stretching like your brain stretches when you force yourself to tackle a really difficult spreadsheet for your marketing plan. Just like your I.Q. goes up when you challenge your brain - I think my Heart Quotient went up last night, stretching to hold all of my daughter's pain, straining to say only healing things, to remove my ego, my needs, my pre-conceptions from the equation of her desperate situation.

I won't know how well I did last night. I won't know if something I said helped or hurt. She will wake up today, bruised and weak, and, hopefully, call her dad for the number of the psychiatrist he knows and trusts. But whether my attempts at comfort truly made things better is not a significant fact for her. Or for me. That she finds an answer. That this stops happening to her. That she musters the courage to do whatever it takes to be better. Those are all that matter. My words are only planks of wood thrown in front of her as she navigates this quicksand. If they carry her across this one day to the next, so that she can really get the help she needs, they've done their job and they can sink away into the darkness of amnesia that usually follows such lows in life.

I know that bees can be scary. They have the power to sting. But their venom also has the power to heal - relieving one of humanity's greatest enemies - arthritis. It also protects the hive - wards off predators. Bees work together. They work for the good of the hive. They make liquid gold from flowers! I imagine that bees dream of flowers, of fields of flowers waiting to be harvested. I imagine that bees dream of the hive. Of their brothers working together to build, to clean, to gather pollen, to create a beautiful world they can call their own.

For my daughter I dream of a solution to her anxiety attacks. It might be a doctor who can prescribe something to balance her better - the hard work of arriving at that magic pill may seem daunting, but it may be well worth it. Or they may pass, maybe she'll just start talking to a really good psychologist and overcome some root cause with a lot of hard work. Whatever her answer - I won't rest until she has one. This world, the hive, needs her more than it knows now - her special insight is always striking, and her ability to communicate is rare. She wants to teach, or be an administrator, at the high school level. She has a lot of hard work ahead of her.

There is a lot to say - and the sweet opportunity of life is so short. I decided that one more blog among the thousands was a simple, humble way to begin to say my piece. I'm just another bee buzzing and working away for the good of the hive. I leave you with a dream of bees - a field of echinacea at Gaia Farm in North Carolina.

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