30 weeks

Heading into 30 weeks.  Still can't believe we've made it this far.  The anxiety is starting to overwhelm me.  As July rounds the corner, spinning plates are up in the air -- work deadlines, adoption immigration and homestudy updates, AND we're having a baby.

There.  I finally said it.  We're having a baby.  So different from -- We're waiting for the three-to-five-year-old who's been growing in our hearts for the past three years.  No doubt a preschooler has their own challenges.  As our home begins to fill with baby gear generously inherited from family members, the anticipation of an infant fills us with worry and joy simultaneously.

A. & I were blessed to celebrate our anniversary/babymoon last weekend at a most relaxing b&b down the shore at Avon.  Though much too short a getaway, we are thankful to have had the time to sit back, reflect, and enjoy tasty brunchfare oceanside on a wraparound porch in a most familiar location -- right next to A.'s favorite fishing jetty.

My morning strolls enveloped me in a quelled peacefulness as I waded mindfully in the ocean waves.  Nothing much matters except everyday miracles:  A., the man who is my love(R), the baby who continues to grow inside of me, the gift abroad whom we continue to wait for and who waits for us, & the Light that inspires us to . . . take a deep breath, & take in the moment.


Our fathers who are in heaven

Dedicated to those who miss their fathers --

our fathers who are in heaven
we honor your names
and emulate your positive ways of being
as we continue to carry on life's lessons 
you have passed down to us
your Spirit remains with us
counsel us from Bliss Beyond
and lead us into veritable bechance


Inspired by fallen embers

our unborn child
our waiting child
both falling embers
in the depths of
nocturnal midnight blue
i gaze for guidance
up above
our thoughts are with
our unborn and
waiting miracles
moons of our lives
the lulling hush of
fallen embers surrounds us


Navigating the universe

In the midst of awaiting "Milagro's" arrival, I find myself pleading with the Universe, asking why the Universe presents us with certain challenges.

Adoption update: Spoke with our agency (PSB) today. In short, U.S. Immigration requires that we keep our paperwork (homestudies, criminal and medical clearances, financials) updated for the next three years to keep our dossier current and avoid a lapse.  Otherwise, if we don't - it'll be like starting completing over as if we never did any adoption paperwork at all.  This is very different from what we were told initially -- Go on hold after the baby's born, and three years from now, renew your paperwork when it's time to get back into it.  You will not have lost your place in the adoption process. 

Apparently, U.S. government bureaucracy rules. 

Of course, note that keeping our paperwork current requires all kinds of time, approvals, AND fees every 15 months for the next three years.  

This is where prayer and meditation come in handy.  In my deepest prayers, I offer gratitude for our life and reach out to the Universe with questions and petitions for help, patience and understanding as to why the adoption process is so wrought with red tape.  And in my meditation, I listen intently to the possibility of the Universe as it speaks for itself, responds to my questions, and sits with me in its silent way. 

thank you for this breath
thank you for this inhale
thank you for this exhale

thank you for the emotions
thank you for the joys, tears and sorrows
thank you for the richness

thank you for the abundance that is, the plenty that is given
thank you for the so many experiences 

thank you for the Life that thrives under my heart
thank you for the Life that flourishes within my heart
may we be peaceful and at ease
as we navigate the Universe


Everything happens for a reason

Sometimes death happens in threes.  Last week, A. & I attended two evening wakes for Tita L. followed by her funeral. We also learned of cousins V. and A.'s beloved grandmother's death in Brazil, and this afternoon, we attended the wake of Tito C.'s brother. Those who have recently experienced the loss of a loved one are all in A.'s extended family. 

In the midst of both sadness and celebration of their lives as some family members shared intimate details of their loved ones' light and true nature, one can't help but try to make sense of Life.

In addition to death, the daily pressures of work deadlines along with an understaffed fundraising department as well as the anticipation of maternity leave in August and what would be my Dad's 73rd birthday tomorrow are not so subtle warnings to breathe and take it one moment at a time.

A. and I were thankful to accept family friends', G. & C.'s, invitation to celebrate their younger son's first birthday and christening with them today, especially after what has seemed like an emotionally challenging couple of weeks.  Z. happens to share the same birthday as Dad - June 4. Admittedly, it is such a comfort to experience something so promising as opposed to all of the somberness generally associated with death. 

Why is it that most Filipino Catholic wakes are full of sorrow and take place in dimly lit funeral homes that feel like a dungeon?  Why isn't it more practiced to have such events in a garden courtyard flanked by flowers, plants, trees and a soothing fountain that are more of a celebratory sendoff or in some Christian circles, more of a homecoming or rebirth?

Z.'s festivities were in the form of a casual pool party with old family friends whom I've known since I was about 4 years old, Jersey City friends who knew my parents.  Visiting especially with G. and C. always leaves A. and me extremely thankful for the opportunity to connect with them.  Truly grounded and authentic in their ways of being, it is quite enchanting to be in their Light.  C.'s centeredness exudes, and it's more than her being a yogi.  Being in her presence is a most welcome and heartening gift.  Thank you once again for the invitation to celebrate with you, G., C., V. and Z.!

After a brief rain shower, I peeked through their kitchen window and witnessed the sun breaking through the clouds. For a few seconds, I could think of nothing except . . . Certain moments make sense.  Sometimes we have to chuckle at the chaos, smile through the tears, and remind ourselves that everything happens for a reason.