Monday, June 7, 2010


I am happy. And sad.

I keep saying it, because I can't quite describe it any other way. I realize how fortunate I am that my third child is here. Breathing. Living. Cavorting (in a newborn way) with my first daughter. But it is more than simply knowing I am fortunate, I feel fortunate. My soul is welled up with love happiness making me feel full. I think I feel fortunate, because if I believe that nothing I did killed Lucy, then Thor's existence here feels simply like good luck. I have never been someone one would refer to as lucky, and yet, these days, cooing, smiling Buddha baby and Big Insightful Sister make me feel exceedingly lucky. I also have an older daughter who amazes me everyday. I tried to describe her this weekend and just kept coming back to amazing and wonderful. These amorphous words of praise...the thing is I just like her so damned much, even though she is three and three year olds are the original masters of the non sequitur, which I totally get.

"Are you hungry?"
"Jack the dog is black and I am pink."

What she said there is, "Stop stressing, Mama. The dog and I are playing." No one told me how much I would like my kid. I mean, I knew I would love her, but like her. I had no idea. And all that good fortune wrapped around a nugget of dead baby. It makes the happy sad. I have suffered enough to recognize how fortunate I am that I haven't suffered more.


I used to think of those emotions as opposites. Happy/Sad. Up/Down. Left/Right. Quiet/Loud. You can't be one if you are the other. When I was a child, I also used to think of vanilla and chocolate as opposites too. You are either a vanilla person or a chocolate person. But then I had a twisty cone with rainbow jimmies, which is my favorite. They are two flavors that exist next to each other creating its own beautiful, delicious flavor. That is how I see happy and sad now. Not as opposites, but as two flavors of emotion.

Perhaps it should be named something new--sappy. Or maybe I am just had.


  1. :-) lovely to find good taste and happiness in your life.

    seize the day, enjoy the ice cream, pink and black, vanilla and chocolate, up and down, inside and outside - maybe it's just the bigger picture. Instead of it being a change if perspective, maybe it's a new dimension all together?

    Lot's of love
    xx Ines

    PS I'm still waiting for that picture, for what is so beautiful on the inside can only be beautiful from the outside, too. Anyway isn't beauty all about the eye of the... ok, I'll shut up and go now. :-P

  2. If you come up with that new word let me know ASAP. I've been trying to figure it out for almost three years now.
    Actually, sappy might be the correct word--that would explain why I get a little weepy whenever I hear that cursed Billy Joel "Lullaby" song.
    Glad to hear things are going well.

  3. Sigh. Loved reading this....
    Thanks and a big hug from Sappyland to Hadnia.
    Or vice versa and whatnot. xx

  4. All these opposites, they kind of illuminate each other. Like, if there was no chocolate, how would we ever know how much we love vanilla, too? We can appreciate vanilla BECAUSE we know what chocolate tastes like.

    Or something like that.

    Anyway, I join you in your sappy and had-ness.

  5. Yes, happy/sad seems just right to me.

  6. More than anything in my life, my child's death has taught me that "opposites" only exist in my mind. It's usually and/both not either/or. peace. So, yes, happy and sad live together.

  7. I used to think of these as opposites that couldn't co-exist—a time for this and a time for that—but here they are hand in hand.

  8. I suppose that is why I'm forever saying my life is bittersweet. That was the best I could come up with, but sappy or had are just as good.
    And for the record, I love chocolate and vanilla together. Best of both worlds.

  9. your words ring so true to me. i have used the words bittersweet so often. happy/sad covers it as well.
    and i am also struck by you "liking" your daughter so much. i have found myself thinking the same thing about my 4 year old alot lately. he makes me laugh, he makes me think, he makes me ME. and i like him soooo much.
    i the happy/sad you.

  10. I get this post so much. I don't do highs and lows anymore. I am everything all at once.


  11. It never ceases to amaze me how easily the happy and sad comingle for me now that M is here. Like you, I am both, simultaneously, every single day.

  12. yes, yes. had and sappy. me too.

  13. early on one of the healer types i saw explained to me that this kind of happy/sad, when turned upon the world, is the ultimate in compassion - embracing people in all their goodness and awfulness, embracing life in all its wonder and beauty as well as its cruelty and suffering. that idea remains a lot for me to digest. i think i'll stick with your twisty cone metaphor for now. much yummier. xo

  14. and...maybe you are brilliant. I love this post Angie- and I understand it. As I read about the opposites- particularly the vanilla/ chocolate- I think of how I relate to life as a painter- that would be grey. Each color has it's opposite/complement but together they make the most amazing greys!! And those grey's are usually what bring the whole painting together- I love that!!! Hope your day is super duper!


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