May 29, 2012

Right Where I Am: 2012

I saw the invitation from Angie on Thursday morning, and I've been attempting to write this post ever since. Opening, rewriting, saving, staring, deleting, closing. Where the hell am I, anyway?

Ironic, that this call to write comes hot on the heels of my decision to stop tracking the days since they died. It was making me feel sad, and stagnant, so I traded the tickers in my sidebar for simple memorial buttons. And I had no twinges about it.

Will you judge me very harshly if I say I don't miss them like I used to? Not that I don't miss them--of course I do. But it's not the same as it used to be.

I don't look around and see where they're not. I don't resent my space or my nice clothes or my paychecks spent only on me. I don't obsess about how big they would be or what milestones they would have achieved by now. I don't worry that total strangers can't have the faintest idea whether I'm a mother or not. That they might look at me and see just another fairly pretty twenty-something who seems to mostly have her shit together. I think the reason I don't worry about that anymore is because I've realized that it actually is who I am now. I've realized I'm not fooling anyone, including myself... because it's no longer a lie.

I've got necklaces and initials. I've got two boxes of baby clothes in the back of my closet. I've got their pages on my blog, and indelible ink on my left thigh: two little doves I designed myself. My wrists are bare, but if I didn't know better, I'd swear their names were written there too. An invisible list. Indelible in its own way.

S has seen my tattoo, and the pictures that hang by my bed. He hasn't asked who they are, and I haven't told. I will, eventually. But not yet. We've been seeing each other for two months; long enough that I realized yesterday it will hurt if we break up. The thought made my stomach drop. It means I'm invested now, you see.

My babies often cross my mind, but for the most part tend to move on quickly. A smile and a nod--they get it. Mama's busy. And anyway, they've got time. They understand forever. They know we've got all the time in the world.

I feel like they each took a piece of my heart with them, when they left. That it is with them, that piece, wherever they are. Always. Except they didn't leave behind a hole, as I first thought. Clever thieves! They filled that small but gaping space with eternity instead. I simply didn't recognize it right away, couldn't sense the shape of it, was confused by its unfamiliar weight. I did not know, at first, that what I thought was lonely emptiness was really the vast wholeness of all things.


Last year's posts: Lissie. No-No.

May 21, 2012


The human race! A story
about an animal, soft
and vulnerable.

All the things we can't stop thinking about, the basics
of being alive: sex and death and love and babies...

not necessarily in any kind of order, or
according to any kind of reason. You
can't even say
sex before babies; not
if you believe
in Jesus. This
world is

unpredictable. Some things

are true. Too many things are not.
Best of luck to all of us, telling the difference.


I have learned: Life is stories, but life is not like a book. It is loose-leaf, a rough draft, a sketch. Coverless.

Life is crumpled pages covered with broken sentences and half-thoughts scribbled in the dark, in the moments between waking and sleeping. It is out of order. It is random, and fleeting. It is flashbacks and memories and now, now, now, now, now. It is tearstained, and faded, and sharp as a papercut. It is uncategorizable.

A plethora of characters march in and right back out again, suddenly, without our knowing why. Maybe it will be relevant later or maybe it won't; maybe it's a whole other story, totally different but equally as important, and they touched here, overlapped for just a second. The hard truth of it is that we'll never see the end of the one if we want to see the other. Choices. We make our choices all the time, and nothing is ever the same again.

May 16, 2012

a good life

Sometimes I think it's enough. Enough already. So much sadness. Death and sadness and sad pictures and sad faces and sad words and my baby died and maybe if I am sad enough no will forget that.

I don't want anyone to forget that. I love you, all of you. I'm not telling you not to be sad. Be whatever you are. Be sad forever if you want, if it seems right. But I am so tired. I don't want to be sad forever. And I think maybe it is enough.

The tickers crouch on my sidebar, calculating silently, and I don't look at them directly for ages. Or I look at them and the numbers jab at me like spindly fingers, sharp and accusing. Eyeball, heart, stomach, lung: poke, poke, poke. And it hurts. It hurts and it's sad and it's not helping. Maybe it is okay to lose count of the days. (What are hours and months and days, to an eternal creature? And aren't they all eternal, now? And if part of us is with them, isn't part of us eternal too?) I think I'll take the tickers down, once I've come up with something to replace them with.

My thoughts run where they will and I suppose it might look a little gloomy around here at times. I may seem to dwell overmuch on the macabre, I don't know. But I am happy. I am really fucking happy, actually. I have a good life, a better one than I've ever had before or ever would have thought I could have. Every day is better than the last--even when it doesn't feel like it is. The people in my life love me, I don't have to hide or be afraid. I am doing meaningful work that I am good at. I have friends. I am meeting new people. I am more and more myself. And I am not sorry for or ashamed of a single thing I have ever done.

If that is not a good life, I don't know what is.

May 13, 2012

rum, whiskey, gin

The airline offered free drinks to mothers and I am one but I didn't want a crappy airline drink. I look young--ever so young, they tell me--and I would have had to make a point to tell the attendant that my drink ought to be free. The older women were handed them without comment, and I wondered how many were barren. How many bled out their babies like I did. How many lost them at 2 weeks or 20 years or any time in between. How many were sitting quietly in their row, sipping their rum or whiskey or gin and thinking, rightly, that they deserved it, for surviving this day one more time.

May 11, 2012

two steps ahead and staying on guard

So here you are / Two steps ahead and staying on guard
Every lesson forms a new scar / They never thought you'd make it this far
But you've got something they don't / Yeah, you've got something they don't

May 6, 2012


Here is a nice little patch of grassy hillside with a birdhouse posted near the treeline that I have run or walked or rolled or been chased (playfully) across at least four times... in my dreams.

On Friday my aunt suggested we walk around the reservoir because it was a gorgeous day and because we like to walk and because the reservoir is lovely and it was a shame that I had never been there before. And when we came over this rise I had to stop for a moment, and take a picture, because it has been one of my safest places, and now I know where to find it whenever I like.

May 1, 2012

unless death

Unless death has tiptoed or
crash landed or
slipped or
body slammed its way
into your life

Unless death has
touched you, brushed
against you, gently
rested its cold hand on you while
it steadied itself
reaching for someone else

Unless death has
claimed someone you loved
more than anything else, more
than sun, more than air
more than all that is good

Unless death has
on the back of your neck while you tried
to will yourself to stop breathing because
you were holding someone
who was not breathing anymore, and who
you knew
would never breathe again

Unless you are
familiar with death
you might think it
in poor taste
to mention

Unless you have encountered it, face
to face, you might think it
a morbid thing
to dwell on and
you might not understand
what I mean when I say:

I wish we were closer friends, death
and I; Me and Death.


I wrote this poem a couple of weeks ago, and I started to write an essay based on it to submit to Glow, but ran out of time and ended up missing the deadline. Ah, well. Maybe next time. The essay is still not done, but I wanted to post the poem here, at least.

Do these thoughts resonate with anyone else?