The holidays, especially motherhood during the holidays, have shown me that joy and grief can truly coexist.

There’s something about being gathered on the ground with my sons in a mess of paper and boxes, laughter and smiles filling the room, that tugged on my heart for the 4th little Rodriguez that should be here.

After breakfast and presents, I threw myself into laundry as a means to sneak away from my family to cry privately. My heart was hurting just as much as it was thankful and celebrating. Until my husband kindly said the chores could and should wait until tomorrow.

So, I sat on the living room floor to start Lego’s with the boys, but just started crying again and finally admitted to Steven that I was having a hard morning.

He walked over to hold me. Cesar hugged me, and said, “it’s okay, mommy.” Carlo zipped by on his scooter and said the same thing. ❤️ They don’t understand why I was crying, but in that moment, I learned that this is something I should not try to hide from them. I thought I was being strong for them and myself by sneaking away in my grief. But in doing so, I was taking away something my husband and sons really wanted and needed. My presence.

This isn’t the first trigger for my grief over Baby Rod and it wont be my last. A lifetime of grief for a lifetime kind of love. I realized today how important it is for our sons to see us facing deep emotions and drawing on one another during those hard moments. 💙 How Steven’s tenderness with me led to Cesar hugging me is forever sketched in my heart.

As I reflect, my heart is drawn to others who are in this space, too.

To those who are trying their best to navigate the crossroad of joy and grief, I see you and I am praying for you. There is something truly beautiful about moving from laughter to tears and back again all in the same moment. It means you have a heart full of deep LOVE, and that’s something to celebrate. ❤️ Sending you all my love.

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