Sunday, July 01, 2007

Hope Takes Flight

This blogging thing is strange, isn't it? Originally, I created this blogspot account for the sole purpose of commenting on my friend's blog over at Little Monkies. Her blog didn't let me comment anonymously, so I jumped through the hoops--created an account. And then. Well, I couldn't just let it sit there idly, could I?

But I never expected to discover a vibrant community of women who care for and support one another. How does that happen, over the internet for goodness sake?

I started following some links, reading some blogs, commenting as I went. Soon others started reading and commenting on my blog. I discovered some amazing, poignant, hilarious writers, most of which I related to on some level. Most nights, I laugh from the gut at what you people write. Sometimes, I'm reduced to a blubbering mess as I read about the trials you face.

Recently, Canape said that her friend, WhyMommy, was diagnosed with breast cancer. I don't personally know WhyMommy. In fact, I only know Canape through her blog. So when Canape asked fellow bloggers to click over to WhyMommy's site and lend some support, I admit that I did so with a guarded attitude. I wanted to remain aloof, to let Canape and the folks who've known WhyMommy for years support her during this time.

Who am I to intrude up this person's privacy? I don't even know her. Do I really want to become emotionally invested in this person's life? These were the selfish thoughts that ran through my head.

And then I started reading. I learned that WhyMommy has 2 beautiful children: Widget (almost 3 years old) and Little Bear (almost 6 months old). She's a wife, a scientist, a mother, a friend. Reading her eloquent writing, I got a glimpse into her big ol' brainy brain, the beauty of her loving family, and the inner-workings of her life. I learned that WhyMommy is loved by, and gives her love, to many. I learned that WhyMommy would really appreciate our support, regardless of how well or how long we've known her.

A switch inside of me flipped from objective observer to compassionate human. I rediscovered that place inside my heart where I care about others, invest in their future, think, believe, hope, and pray.

Because really, how hard is that? What for another human being and all; a fellow mother, wife, and friend. I'm opening up wide, knowing that WhyMommy, and all of you, would do the same for me if I needed it. Will you join me?

Here are some of the ways that you can support WhyMommy:

1) Pray.
2) Send her your encouraging words to
3) Email teamwhymommy AT gmail DOT com to participate in a secret project to surprise WhyMommy.
4) Join Team WhyMommy to form a wall of support. Email Canape to get on the list and get the code for the blingy button on your site.
5) Pray.

"Hope" is the thing with feathers--
That perches in the soul--
And sings the tune without the words--
And never stops-- at all--

And sweetest--in the Gale is heard--
And sore must be the storm--
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm--

I've heard it in the chillest land--
And on the strangest Sea--
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb-- of Me.

Emily Dickinson, 1861


Seattle Mamacita said...

slouching mom's post sent me her way just the other day and I too am in awe at whymommy and the community that has rallied around to support her. Sometimes we can feel so powerless and helpless as bystanders and friends but we shouldn't forget the strength of our words and their power to comfort and touch. thanks ally you always do that.

Jenn said...

Beautiful post.

I found Why Mommy through a different blog, but feel the same.

I love what this community of friends here does for me; it reaffirms my faith in all that is good and right in the world.

jen said...

i love this strong whirlwind of support - it's amazing, isn't it.

kim the midwife said...

thanks for reminding me how easy it is to pray. i do a lot of THINKING about people and the world and whatever needs a praying sort of action... but i rarely pray in any "conventional" way. whymommy is already in my heart and head. now my prayers too.

bgirl said...

thanks ally for the wake-up call, i too often feel those initial feelings you shared. in a similar vein to seattlemamacita, taking a closer look at the ability we all have within, to support and have compassion for those around us moves us past the line of bystander and helps us offer courage to heal those around us.

Mary-LUE said...

Well, as any blogger who is foolish enough to try typing a thoughtful comment when their child is already antsy will know, I just had to give up on a comment due to imminent meltdown by seven year old.

She's settled in now somewhere else and so I can try again.

There are several things about this post. First, I think it is great that you are sharing about Whymommy here. There is something about the community of blogging women out here in the 'verse. Oh, like any community, there are squabbles, disagreements, the "popular" kids, but I think overall, we're a pretty respectful, caring bunch.

Next, I love both the poem and the painting. Could you tell me the artist and name of the painting? You can just leave it here in your comments or email me at aseveremary at pacbell dot net.

Ally said...

Hi Mary-Lue: Thanks for your comment. I love that painting, too, but unfortunately I don't know the name of it or the artist. I just stumbled across it on the internet when I was doing a random search for "hope" on google images. The link is

If anyone finds the name/artist, I'd love to know it as well. I'd love to have a print of it hanging in my home.

Worker Mommy said...

Thanks so much for bringing this to my attention. As you may have read my mother has breast cancer too. In going through this ordeal she's mentioned that the support has been key in getting her through the really rough periods.
I'm headed over there right now to offer whatever support I can.

Thanks again Ally. You continue to amaze me with your brilliant, thoughtful writing.

Mary-LUE said...

Hi Ally,

Well, I messed around with the URL you gave me and I found out the painting is simply called Hope III. It is part of a series. Did you get the poem from there? The reason I ask is that the picture is specifically inspired from that poem.

The artist is P Neko Meicholas and he is an artist, as well as other things, for Guanima Press. They are located in the Bahamas. I couldn't find any info. on getting prints, though.

Nancy said...

You're such a great person, Ally. I am so glad to have discovered you and your blog.

And I admire your eloquence in this post. I know Whymommy will appreciate it too.

Ally said...

Thanks for the info, Mary-lue. Kudos on your detective work! That is really interesting that the painting was inspired by the poem. I didn't get the poem idea from it; I had already decided to include Emily Dickinson's poem, but then went to find a picture to go with it and that's what I found. Hat's off to that artist for making a perfect interpretation of that poem come alive in color. That is so cool.

momomax said...

so well written. I'm looking forward to coming back. I think I have to thank seattle mamacita for finding you. I have been going through the same feelings of wonder at finding all these incredible women on the internet.


WhyMommy said...

No one is more surpised than I. Thanks, Ally. I'm really enjoying reading you blog. And I TOTALLY appeciate the support.

Words have the power to heal.

Daisy said...

Excellent post. Agreed on your thoughts. I don't even know you -- just ran into your blog from a link from another blogger's comments. I'll certainly pray for WhyMommy and follow up with Canape.