On Saturday my BFF (Bird) will be holding a naming ceremony for her daughter – one of my god-daughters. I’m not sure there are enough words to express the variety of feelings I am experiencing around this event.
So much sadness that I cannot be there with Bird to share in such a special occasion. Sadness that I have never even met this precious child who I am supposed to be responsible for if anything happens to her parents. Sadness that due to distance I can never be what I feel a god-parent should be. Sadness that I don’t have a child.
You see they are having a very beautiful earthy ceremony, not religious as such, but very in tune with nature. And as part of this I have been asked to write a few words which will be read out on my behalf stating what I want to gift this child with and what I wish for her. I really struggled with it because in order to actually really give any gifts to her I need to know her. If I want to give her the gift of my love, how do I show that across and ocean. I want to give her the gifts of encouragement and approval and praise and friendship, but all these seems so superficial across a distance. The gifts I want to give her require me to be a real person in her life, not a disconnected voice across the world, they require me to have constant real interactions with her.
In terms of what I wish for her, that is so much simpler, it is the things we wish for all children and most especially what we wish for our own children. It is the wish that they may grow up happy, healthy and strong and all the things that go along with that. The wish that she be surrounded by love all the days of her life. But I can’t be there to help make these wishes come true.
They say to name something is to give it power, but I’m not sure it is that simple. Naming me god-mother won’t give me the power to be what she deserves from me. What kind of god-mother can I be? It seems only the mythical, appears with the wave of a wand kind – the Fairy God Mother.
And writing down the words I wish I could be there to read I had tears streaming down my face as I just kept thinking how I long to be wishing these things for my child. It brought home so much of what kind of parent I want to be and how much I feel we have to offer to a child and how precious the gift of a child actually is.