Tag Archives: Mother’s Day

The Fringes

11 May

Today is the day set aside to recognize motherhood.  Mother’s Day, as it is so named.  As a mother in mourning I think most of my loved ones expected this day to be a hard one for me.  As it turns out, it is no more difficult than the everyday I make it through my sorrow and move onto the next.  As it turns out this day is most difficult for my daughter, the sister to my fallen son.  This is the day the two of them, TOGETHER, would plan and execute the details of ensuring I was without doubt of their devotion and honor.  I must say, they were quite good at it…my daughter still is.

But if the sorrow has hit anyone more than the other, today is her day.  Her brother, her partner in all things familial is missing from her equation and, for her, there is no way to avoid his absence this day.

For me–no matter where my children are I am still a mother.  Whether I can be with them or not, on this particular day, I am still a mother.  And in being a mother, my society honors me–just look at all the store sales happening this weekend in honor of this day.  Granted, being showered with blessings from my own children is not comparable on the same scale as saving a few bucks–it trumps the monetary gain tremendously!  But point being, there are no guarantees of being with ones children on this particular day and yet as a mother I still have opportunity to be acknowledged.  Not so for the sister, left hanging out on the fringes because the obvious position of the mourning mother obfuscates the internal bleeding of the sibling.  Of course I am receiving text messages, emails and calls reflecting supportive thoughts for me on this day, but she is not.

And now she is left to navigate the sentimentality of maternal love while being barraged with sorrow.  Her quandary’s resemble something like this:  Does she show her mother her angst and risk causing burden to her on what she is accustomed to believing is a “special day for her mom?”  How is she to push through the vacancy left by her dearly departed when this day keeps shoving her loss in every step of her path?

To add insult to injury, the death of our beloved Cole will make it’s first anniversary mark this coming week.  May 17, 2013 we received the dreaded news.

Today my husband is somewhat on the fringes as well.  He has lost his mom a few years ago and his grandmother shortly afterward, both of whom were two of his biggest fans.  He is quite without a large portion of his extended family, and yet today he is supposed to do two things, honor his own mother and honor his wife, the mother of his children.  Now he, too, is stuck with a day that serves as a great reminder to the many losses he is suffering.

My sister, Auntie to my children, is also the overlooked mourner.  The sufferer on the fringe who sits in the shadow of her sisters pain.

This is a tough day, to be sure.  But today, as a mother, I honor those who are not privileged to have a day which recognizes them in the manner that Mother’s Day recognizes me–in my mothering and in my loss.  My heart goes out to you, the sister, the aunt, the grandmother, the friend, the husband–my soul loves you.

Today, with this post, I honor Esther Bent, Brian Bent and Leah Smith–

Happy Mother’s Day!

All Dried Up

12 May

My last post was written in an attempt to convey the fact that I feel as if I am running on borrowed time.  Not the type of “borrowed time” that means short on life, but more the type of situation where there are so many things happening, nay converging, that when I get a moment I feel as if it’s borrowed from a future still pending.  In my own estimation, I fell short of success in conveying that concept…not only did I not take the proper initiative to dissect where I was coming from, but the thought itself is an abstract and abstracts are hard for me to process.  Hence the lazy output of my previous writing.  To be plain, my last post is downright boring.  A cop out at best.  I thank you for reading through it, and I especially thank those of you who, with loving hearts, were able to decipher through my blasé code and find the real Rivka in the mix.  You are my kindred spirits!

So I have some catching up to do…

First, the excitement of the day:  My husband, my daughter, and I are heading to France in June.  Brian (hubby) has been asked to play music at a festival in Biarritz, FR called, “Wheels and Waves.”  He is also being recruited to that country to have an art show at a gallery in the same town, galerie 13 avril de biarritz.  When he was asked to participate he said, “yes, but my wife must come along too.”  So Brian and I are having an all expenses paid trip to France, and we decided we needed our daughter to be party to the endeavor as she is fluent in the language and we are not.  Well simultaneous to the french connection came an offer from Japan.  Again, my beloved said, “I will go but not without my wife.”  So we return from France only to turn around and three days later take off for Japan.  Only this time, Esther will not be with us as she only knows how to eat Japanese, not speak it!

Which brings me to the second item of ‘new and exciting’ in the Bent (but not broken) world of Rivka B.  Upon our return from Japan, two days after our return to be exact, I will be starting a new job.  A full time job.  And though I am not quite yet at liberty to discuss the details of the position, or the employer, I am very much looking forward to this new opportunity, challenge, endeavor, direction.  I assure you, more to come on this subject later…like mid-summer, later!

Third, but not last, as result of many, many (would it be too redundant to include about a thousand more “many’s?”), circumstances and prayers (“prayers” should be in caps for emphasis!), our Bent family is graduating from the ministry we were called to thirteen years ago.  Yep, 13 years ago my husband and I knew without a doubt we were called to start an outreach ministry called, the Hotrod Church for Sinners (hotrodchurch.com).  It has been, what I like to call, a catalyst ministry–a first step, if you will, toward a life of faith (we have also  been blessed with several people who utilize it for their additional steps of faith as well).  We have met in the same pizza/bar restaurant since its inception–free of charge.  And have reached out to the people in society who feel, for whatever reason, unrecognized by the traditional church.  The ministry has become so much more than that.  It has been an extension of our family.  It is funny, I was briefly looking through the photos taken at the hospital while my son was in ICU (from the brain tumor surgery) and I thought to myself, “what a diverse and colorful bunch of people we had supporting us, what a beautiful ‘family of friends’ we have been given–many as result of the Hotrod Church.”  Now I like to joke (often), that the sinner part of the title is held by ‘yours truly’, though that part of the name came about more as a nod to the fact that we all know we are sinners and therefore don’t need to be told.  At any rate, our last service in our little pizza restaurant will be Sunday, May 26.  We are secure in the ending of this chapter, and we are excited for the next set of adventures our Lord in Heaven has for us…watch out homelessness, Brian’s got you on his radar! 🙂

Lastly (for now), is the present condition of my (our) son Cole.  The good news, he is successfully living on his own.  In fact, I will be surprised if he ever decides to come back home.  This, in and of itself, is very positive, and I have to keep reminding myself of this truth.  You see it is very difficult for my maternal eye to not fixate upon the things that aren’t so great–because it is in my nature to want to “fix” these things.  Cole’s dependency upon narcotics and the cocktail of medications he receives, greatly disturbs my soul.  Every day, I wait with anticipation to hear from him…when I do, I am thankful to have another day of assurance that he is alive.  I have come to realize that this is my lot, the lot of being the mother.  I will never have the ability to see my son through any other eyes than the maternal vision which was handed me at the time of his birth.  I will always want the closest thing to perfection when evaluating his health and welfare.  I will always utilize my critical eye with his circumstance because I am hoping for the best, most fulfilling life for my son.  But what I have realized is that my maternal eye, and all that the concept encompasses, is not necessarily what he considers as “best.”  And to that epiphany, I am learning to yield.  So I am reminded, moment by moment, that he is making it…his way.  And for today, that is a good and healthy place for him to be.  It is his process, and I will take part as I am allowed, the challenge being not to take over! 😉

Well I will close within this theme.  After all, it is Mother’s Day in the U.S.A.  And though I had hoped to be given a quiver of 10, I have been blessed with my two natural born, who just by themselves make the quiver seem quite full!  Yet in addition to the two, I have been blessed with many nieces and nephews (some of them technically cousins), young ladies who consider me a parental role model, children of longtime friends who humor me with their approval, and a  few stragglers still grasping for any loving handout that comes their way…all of which bless my soul to play a part in their lives.  Moreover, who make me realize that if my quiver of ten had in fact been given me, I would lack the capacity of mind for the dozens more I have been given in their stead.

P.s. I am sharing a piece of Hotrod Church history with the following video clip, including the fact our son is playing the drums while he was on leave from his military assignment…obviously pre-surgery.

…peace out and peace be with you…

Bless-Sed

17 May

First off, I would like to thank each of you who complimented me in such a way as to make me feel like “Super Mom”.  You all gave me a lovely gift, and I am grateful.

Secondly, I have to say that both of my children are very good at blessing me.  They stayed back from church on Sunday and worked on making the house (dogs bedecked with bows included) festive and beautiful for when I returned.  I was greeted at the door by two very happy, colorful canines and when I turned the corner into the dining area, I was further greeted with a bouquet of 40 multi-colored tulips (my wedding flower) which were sitting next to a lovely tropical arrangement courtesy my friend, Nora, and Bodega chocolates from my Candymoto.  Chocolate covered strawberries were in the mix, and a flourless chocolate cake made especially for me by my daughter (I am still living the ‘gluten-free’ regimen I began a while back) was wafting its dark decadence my way.  They even had my favorite Brazilian music playing in the background.  And because it was lunch time, they were both ready and awaiting the go ahead from me to order my favorite ‘gluten-free’ pizza which they picked up, payed for, and delivered to our backyard Shangri La…the one which I requested spend the rest of the day basking in.  In fact, that was my one request; for mother’s day I had hopes of sitting by the pool reading, playing cards, or just visiting with my children and husband.  Others were welcome as long as I didn’t have to wear my ‘happy hostess’ chapeau and could lounge until I was all lounged out.  Turns out it was just us four until Esther had to leave for work and then it was three.  🙂

Now a couple of comedic errors–well ironic really– occurred during time I was enjoying my blessing shower.  One, I received two Happy Mother’s Day cards from the two women who served as my maternal coaches.  The only problem was that I was so focused on my needing the day to do whatever it was (or wasn’t) I wanted that I forgot I had two very special women deserving of my time and energy.  Thus in the course of my forgetfulness and self focused mind, I failed to send them a reminder of their special place within my heart and life leaving them only to chomp upon the bitter pill of a phone call from me.  My other ironic chastisement came when I read a 2012 daily devotional for the date of ‘Dia de Madres’, for from it I learned of the proverbial wife and mother referred to by the name of, ” The Proverbs 31 Woman”.  She is not necessarily new to me for I had heard of her ways and means some years back, though I confess to have cast the lesson she portrays to the side for I have no interest in rising before dawn and working in the fields.  But here I was, once again, facing the lesson of this particular female as recorded in scripture many years past.  And by again learning of this selfLESS female from long ago, I concurred I am most definitely not her…just ask my two moms!

Even so, this past Wednesday I again enjoyed the gift of my children, the gift of our home, the gift of time, the gift of rest, and the gift of laughter.  All of which was unexpected, but superbly fulfilling just the same.  Cole, Esther, and I laughed our heads off in the morning as we dipped all kinds of foods in chocolate and ate till our stomachs refused another morsel.  I baked muffins and they both entertained me in the kitchen.  We lay by the pool, we napped, and we swam.  We listened to music and shouted absurdities at each other with such mirth we had to take pause only to reclaim the air to our lungs so we could carry on some more.  And the only reason our soiree came to an end was because Esther had to get herself off to her job–leaving Cole and I to wrap up the good time without her.  Which we did (with Brian who returned home from work and joined us poolside), until the makings of our evening meal required my attention and the ‘norm’ of the familial routine resumed.

While I know I am not a “Proverbs 31 Woman”  (nor do I have the slightest aspiration to be so for my stamina forbids it), I am a blessed mother and wife just the same.  I am graced with thoughtful and kind children and a loving and dynamic husband.  Besides, the daily devotional was written by a man; what could he possibly know about being a wife and mother? 🙂

So, do you know what I want to be when I grow up?  I already am what I would choose to be.

%d bloggers like this: