Erica, on Love. Sling Diaries, Vol VII.

The Sling Diaries, Volume VII. A photo-documentary chronicling the art of baby wearing in the lives of families around the world. Over the course of six months, Sling Diarists will create their own Sling Diary though a series of diary entries interpreting a unique theme given to them each month.

Meet all of our Sling Diarists here.


“Love is the ultimate outlaw. It just won’t adhere to any rules.”-Tom Robbins

“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.”-Rumi

“It is a lonely thing protecting a breakable heart”-Atticus

“What is done in love is done well”-Vincent Van Gogh

“Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.”-Robert Heinlein

“We accept the love we think we deserve.”-Noam Chbosky

“If anybody asks you where your coming from

Say love, say for me love

Say love, say for me love”-Avett Brothers

I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go with this one. How love reigns. How Midwifery is my passion and what I love and what I do. Self love. Love after abuse. I could have gone 1,000 different directions, but I chose to wax poetic for a bit, as it seems fitting that love is mused about.

How does one talk about the intangible? How to create clarity out of chaos? Love is that which nothing can define and all at once, every thing defines it. It is the grandest paradox. What if we allowed love to be our inspiration? Would we find that love is everything? That it is you. That it is I. That it exists over here, and over there, and there, and there, and there. That it’s literally everywhere? How about that love seemingly has no boundaries, that it is infinite. That it can multiply and multiply until you think your heart will burst. But your heart just grows, it grows around all that love.

Love is relentless, persistent, stubborn. It guides, pulls, shoves and waits. It watches, it listens, it expands. It moves effortlessly into all forms of expression. It can anchor us and it can set us free. It emboldens us, enraptures us, it crushes us, squeezing all the air from our lungs, like a 900-lb weight upon our chest. With quickness love can terrify, exhilarate, mystify, blind, empower. How is it that love can be and do all of this?

Love is the the heftiest of human capacity. It is an anchor, it is the wind, it is the sail, and it is the sea. It’s difficult to write about something that spans all of human creation yet never looks exactly the same in its expression. That is the magic that is love. And as it is with magic, love is shrouded in mystery, often leaving us bewildered in its wake. I don’t proclaim to understand love, I just bend to its wishes.

Love is the lattice from which I build this life, the weft on which I weave every action. It is in love that I find my purpose, my strength, and my weakness. Love has been a catalyst for actions I would otherwise had been too terrified to make had love not bolstered my faith.

No one ever told me how scary it is to love so deeply. How love wraps its roots around your very essence and when that which you love is in danger or taken, your very life feels as if it is being strangled by the massive roots that love has tapped. No one ever told me how brave love would make me. How courage would burst out of my being as if Hulk himself had been unleashed. No one told me how much sleep love would steal, or how much love would leave me feeling helpless. No one told me love isn’t just rainbows, and butterflies, and warm fuzzy feelings. No one told me how love could seep into every fiber of my being, turning me into living, breathing love. That love could just swallow up my identity. Just like that. No one told me how love can frustrate you beyond any ability to rationalize. No one told me that love should be a compass with which to steer your way through the labyrinth that is life. But somehow love has guided my actions before I understood that, “what is done in love is done well.” And now, that is our signpost, our lantern in the dark of night, the compass in the raging, tossing seas of life. It is what I steer my children to in the midst of chaos:  If it must be done, let it be done with love.

This is a talk I have with all my children, especially the older few who attend public school, a place where I know kids can forget how to be kind. We talk about integrity, about feelings, about connection. We talk about not knowing everyone’s story and how we can try to meet people where they are. We talk about the power of love and how our actions and words matter. See, I know all too well the power of words and I truly dislike the saying that you aren’t responsible for another person’s feelings. Of course someone can be responsible for how another person feels, especially when our actions towards another are void of love or filled with anger, or hate, or contempt. Instead my children are taught that how we treat another person matters and that if something hard must be said, it should always be the truth and said in love. That makes the difference in your responsibility in how another person feels. Sometimes we have to tell someone a hard truth, bad news, painful recollections….but when there is truth to be said and it is avoided for fear of hurting someone, then you do a disservice to both people involved, courageous conversations are a part of life. The integrity of our words matters and our words should dance with love.

Being a mother has left me feeling like Spider Man, “With great power, comes great responsibility.” Is there anything that holds more responsibility than parenting, the literal  shaping of the future? When I make space to think about all that parenthood encompasses, it sometimes scares the crap out of me. How much responsibility parents shoulder. But love centers me. Love is that compass I was talking about. It just keeps guiding my actions, lighting the path. If I can do anything right by my children, it will be to show them what it means to live with a heart wide open, how to embrace vulnerability, to walk through fear, to summon strength and courage, to trust in love. If they can step into their power as love centered humans, warriors of light and truth, then I can age a happy soul.

They say that we learn by observing, That it is an inherit learning trait of primates. We all know the saying, “monkey see, monkey do.” It’s actually been quantified, you can look it up, “the 100th Monkey theory.” Its pretty neat actually. So, my strange anthropological loving mind has  embraced it and I try to use it daily. I try my best to live a life that honors the four agreements and I have added a fifth. I try to be the example for them. They are always watching.

Be impeccable with your word.

Don't take anything personally.

Don't make assumptions.

Always do your best.

If it must be done, let it be done in love.

The world seems so uncertain anymore. The news is chaos, the headlines provoke fear. The weather seems unstable and inflation is absolutely insane. I don’t know what the future is going to bring. The world I grew up in is so much different than the one my children are living in. The only thing I know for certain is my love for them. That love, the love that pulses, to the sound of their names, has brought me so incredibly far. If love can do that, it can’t be wrong. So I will continue to teach them to allow love to be their compass while weaving truth and reality into their story…they need to be strong and brave in concert with being loving. And when people ask them where they came from, I hope they tell them love.


Follow along with Erica over on Instagram, @laughing.moon, and The Sling Diaries on Pinterest

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