It was late. A long emotionally grueling couple of days had been underscored by a close friend’s funeral and burial earlier in the day. Mark and I had barely sat down on the couch when the kids rustled in with their blankets looking for spots to burrow into. Josi chose to snuggle in with me. The least demonstrative of our four, she seemed to understand that Mom and Dad were deeply sad and needed some intense “family time”. As she lay next to me, I put my arm around her and looked into those deep espresso eyes. I was drawn back to the first time she really took me in, at the young age of nine months, a moment when both of our souls were stripped bare and connected in the moonlight of the dark quiet Chinese night. I had found such a comfort and peace in my daughter and I did again this sad evening. I hugged her and kissed her, thankful beyond words that she was placed in my life, my daughter, a blessing cherished.
What connects one human being to another? Where does the recognition of familiarity, comfort, of knowing come from? How does the raw hunger that a mother has for her child manifest?
The Chinese believe it evolves from the Red Threads. Unseen by the naked eye, these threads extend from every newborn and permanently attach to the people in her life. The red threads shorten as the baby grows into adulthood, drawing those who will be closest to her in. They never break.
Josi is eleven now. Our relationship evolves and deepens as she marches towards becoming a woman. I am pleased that she seeks me out more than she ever has, asking for counsel and just wanting to hang with her mom – when she’s not with her girlfriends. The words I have spoken to her and my other children, run through my head, time and time again, “I am your mother. I have and will love you forever. I will always take care of you and keep you safe.” The comfort and love Josi demonstrated last night shows me the feelings are mutual.