Friday, April 24, 2009

"A Pair of Shoes" revisited .....

On the day of Zoey's official diagnosis, I posted this poem. I would have had no idea, on that very surreal, very terrifying day in late October, what this poem would actually come to mean to me and the new journey we were about to embark on. Almost 6 months later, I have learned more than any mother should ever have to learn. I have seen more than any mother should ever have to see. I have watched helplessly as other mothers endure more than any mother should ever be asked to endure. These things and a myriad of other feelings and emotions are far too complex to encapsulate in a simple posting. Suffice it to say, I am changed. Forever and irrevocably changed. I stand shoulder to shoulder with some amazing other mothers. Doing all we know how to do in these moments. Which is to continue to walk forward, into the unknown. Led only by unwavering faith in the inexplicable and guided only by the light of our magical children. Some children here with us, others guiding us from a place we can only imagine the beauty of. Today, I walk on ...

A Pair of Shoes

I am wearing a pair of shoes.
They are ugly shoes.
Uncomfortable shoes.
I hate my shoes.

Each day I wear them, and each
day I wish I had another pair.

Some days my shoes hurt so bad
that I do not think I can take
another step.

Yet, I continue to wear them.

I get funny looks wearing these shoes.

I can tell in others eyes that they
are glad they are my shoes and not

They never talk about my shoes.

To learn how awful my shoes are
might make them uncomfortable.

To truly understand these shoes
you must walk in them.

But, once you put them on, you can
never take them off.

I now realize that I am not the
only one who wears these shoes.

There are many pairs in this world.

Some women ache daily as they try
and walk in them.

Some have learned how to walk in
them so they don't hurt quite as much.

Some have worn the shoes so long that
days will go by before they think about
how much they hurt.

No woman deserves to wear these shoes.

Yet, because of these shoes I am a
stronger woman.

These shoes have given me the strength
to face anything.

They have made me who I am.

I will forever walk in the shoes of a
woman who has a child with cancer.

*Author Unknown*


Lacey said...

Thats beautiful. As much as Jax has been through. Cancer is such a different journey. I've never been on our cancer floor, its actually the only unit in the whole hospital that Jax has never been on, and hopefully never will. Just going to the hemotology/oncology clinic for Jax blood problems makes me so sad. I see kids with their hats and scarfs on their cute little bald heads. Some are so white they are almost translucent. And some have buckets in case they get nauseous. its a very sad place but also a very happy place when they sing the cancer free song to a child who's won their battle. I'm glad your almost done with this phase of Zoeys life. Hugs from me and Jax

Cjengo said...

I love that poem!!!

Melani said...

that poem is wonderful!
I have added Zoey's button to my blog, I hope this is ok. Please advise if I am ok, or if I should remove it. I live in Camarillo and have been following your blog since Solan de Solace did the hair cutting for Zoey, therefore, even though we have never met, I feel close to you! :)

Junior said...

Beautiful poem

Michelle said...

A strong poem that says so much...more then most of us can even begin to understand! Hoping and praying that soon you will be able to remove those shoes...and I know they will never be completely gone, at least you can hide them under your bed and even though you know they are always there, I hope you never have to see them again my friend! T-minus 2 more days until the biopsy...I am hopeful, anxious and afraid...

scrappy quilter said...

That poem is beautiful. Having 3 children with disabilites I've seen a lot of things, however I've never been on a cancer ward. I can't imagine what moms and dads go through. Continued prayers for Zoey. Hugs.

Victoria Strong said...

This is beautiful Heather -- your writing -- beautiful. I wish it were not so, but you do walk forward -- in spite of so very much and you inspire me with each step you take.

Jeanette said...

This is absolutely beautiful. I don't know exactly how long I have been following Zoey's journey, but it has been a while. I have learned so much about such a terrible demon. I do not know you, but I have cried with you, smiled with you, and dilligently prayed for you and Zoey.

Kristy said...

That is one amazing poem...but then again you are amazing Heather. Like I have always know you to be strong resilient and such a fantastic mother to all of your children!! Love the picture of it me or is her hair getting more silky and pretty as the months go on?? She is as gorgeous as I am banking on an Addie and Zoey playdate sometime this summer...can't wait!!

Colbert Family said...

That is so beautiful! I am going to put that as a post on my blog too if you don't mind. I feel such a strong connection with other mommys going through this cancer thing with their kids and I truly love and care about you and each other mommy that is walking in these same shoes. Thank you for sharing your sweet heart and sweet Zoey with us. These amazing kids are changing many lives!

sturpin said...

These lines spoke to me:
They never talk about my shoes.

To learn how awful my shoes are
might make them uncomfortable.

To truly understand these shoes
you must walk in them.

I have been thinking and trying not to think about some of the reactions and comments from others I have received with Bella. They have hurt and been offensive, but I remind myself they were said in ignorance. They have no idea what I'm going through. They haven't walked in my shoes. :)

I think you are amazing - while going through your own huge, long lasting trail, you offer me kind and hopeful words. I thank you. And I'm sorry about your shoes. I wish you didn't have to wear them.

Anonymous said...

Striking poem, so profound and thought provoking. I had to be still for some time. You continue to inspire us all Heather. Thinking of you all with lots of love and prayers, Christi Harman

Alisha said...

Such a beautiful poem. I wonder who wrote it? You have a great way with words.

Edward Chell said...

Hello Heather,

Thank for saying Hi with the kids.