May 18, 2012

Letting You Fly...

My entire life I have been drawn to the bird as a beautiful symbol of different ways that I viewed myself and the world around me. When I was about twelve years old I remember writing one of my first poems. It was about a little bird that was caught in a tree but didn’t know how to fly yet. During college, I very seriously considered getting a tattoo after a semester I spent abroad in Orvieto, Italy—the first time in my life I felt that I truly was able to fly. I imagined imprinting an image on my body to symbolize that significant period of my life, with an open bird cage (to represent the bondage of sin, depression, expectations of others, my struggles with the desire for perfection, baggage that I’d carried with me, etc.) and a bird flying away from the cage (learning what it meant to walk in grace, coming out of the valley of depression, acceptance of myself, forgiveness for past hurts/pains, etc.). When my husband and I got married last October, we FILLED the hall where we held the ceremony and reception with hundreds and hundreds of ivory origami paper cranes. My dear friend Chelsea and I spent months folding their wings, their beaks, their gracefulness, and we strung them around the room, filled mason jars, and adorned the tables with these beautiful birds that to me represented the sweetest love and greatest hope I’d ever known. 

(photocredit: Kristen Scott,
I am now 33 weeks pregnant with our first baby, a sweet little boy. One of the songs I’ve found myself listening to a lot during pregnancy has been Ingrid Michaelson’s ‘Highway.’ She sings about a child, her little bird, who has grown so much yet she finds herself having trouble letting him/her go. I find myself thinking about how fragile a baby bird can be, and how my job as his mother will not be to keep him in the nest or pin down his wings, but to spend his life teaching him how to one day spread his wings and soar. I can imagine that this will be the biggest challenge I’ve yet to face. This blog will hopefully be a place that I can share my wobbly first attempts of flight into motherhood, the joys of raising our little boy, and navigating the new life we are stretching into in Virginia. Please fly with me, dear friend, as I learn how to gracefully open my hands and release this baby bird into the world around me.


  1. Heath, I'm so excited about this blog! And it's got the perfect name. When I was pregnant a dear friend said to me, "From the time that baby is born, your job will be to let her go." I think about that a lot and, like you said, am pretty sure it will be the hardest thing ever! Motherhood is a crazy adventure and I'm looking forward to reading all about yours :)

  2. Just found your blog today- so sweet! I'm a new momma the picture of letting our "little birds" fly from day 1!