my golden-haired muse

Tomorrow, I am going to a conference for bloggers, a conference held by BlogHer*, a large blogging organization who chose to nominate me as one of its Voices of the Year for my post “I Had a Boy.” This is an unexpected and huge honor, something that has humbled me to my bones. But it has triggered unbelievably complex emotions too.

As writers, we all want our voices to be heard. As the mother of a child gone too soon, I have wanted so badly for his story to be read over and over by as many people as possible because if they do, he won’t be forgotten. But I can’t help but be saddened that for me to find my voice, my boy had to get sick. For me to gain this recognition, my boy had to die.

My wife is the first to remind me that I have been writing about Caemon since we started dreaming of having a child. I wrote about the long road to getting pregnant. I chronicled every joyful moment of my pregnancy with him. I wrote a three-installment, eight-page story of his birth. And once he was here, I wrote and wrote and wrote about the wonders and trials and triumphs of mothering a vibrant little crocodile.

And when he got sick, when our lives suddenly turned from trying to feed a picky two-year-old to consoling him through needle pokes and dressing changes, I took to writing through my fear, escaping the hospital through my words. When he died, this was sometimes the only place I felt I could turn to handle my grief, a way I could feel close to him and continue loving him because I have always, always written about my beloved son.

I think I have been surprised that through the terror of his illness and the agony of his death, I have done some of the best writing of my life–but I shouldn’t be. What I share on the page comes from the deepest of places. It is honest. It is raw. It is real. In fact, it is more honest and raw and real than anything I have written until now.

It is sacred.

I would never have chosen this path. I would give up every kind comment, every new reader, every mention on another webpage to have my son in my arms again, but that is not the road I am to take. I do, however, get to be a writer, and I get to share the most beautiful story, memories of a magical child gone too soon.

Tomorrow, I will go to this conference with my golden-haired muse tucked in my heart, and when I do, I will honor this precious gift he left me: a voice borne of hope and fear and love and heartbreak, the voice of a mother’s heart.

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*If you are attending BlogHer, I will be part of a discussion at the WordPress booth on Saturday at 3:30. I would love to see you there.

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9 thoughts on “my golden-haired muse

  1. threeboysandamom

    Breathtaking. I’m so sorry for your loss, that kind of pain is unimaginable. But your words a revealing to others who are going theough it roo, or have, or will. Thank you for sharing your heart.

    Reply
  2. mamaandmummy

    Congratulations. I am sure you will do amazing. People always respond to honesty and perception, and your writing is overflowing with both. Thank you for continuing to share Caemon with us.

    Reply
  3. akismet-2ea0f37af43ce30e5c396e2141277a69

    Congratulations! This is another way for strangers to know the angel who IS your son.

    Reply
  4. SusanB

    It’s quite something isn’t it, as one who needs to write, that we write about the loss of these sweet children who we once held in our arms and now must hold in our hearts. We now write from a place most writers will never get too, or if they even come close, won’t stay as we do, ever changed, ever hurting, ever searching. Congratulations. I’m glad that many will read what you write so beautifully.

    Reply

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