Friday, February 26, 2010
Little girl, sunshine hair.
I bring her to my not-so-quiet-today spot.
She worries about the safety of the wild birds, laughing about mud clumps.
Sitting on rocks and poking the water, hearing birds cry in the nearby air,
hearing water splish splashing around (she says they're "mini waves").
It soaks up the back of her calf.
Leaning far out, reaching to find new treasures and clean up litter with her
spindly stick, feet wet ("Oh, I don't care, can I stick my hand in to pick up this eggshell?").
Watersnail on rock and "gooey" eggs, she's really wet now.
Outrage at litter ("How can someone do that?").
Cattails poking up sharply from the edge, buds of the bushes and trees like droplets of colored water on the bark.
She finds old cottontails from last year ("They're all cottony").
Bumble bees in search of new flowers.
She puts back the "cotton" that the ants are in.
The collected pile of litter grows.
She skips around for more, ponytail bobbing.
The last remnants of girlhood clinging on hopelessly.
It's late, we reluctantly gather ourselves to leave.
"I don't want to leave yet".
But we have to go back to our daily reality.
We've gathered a small collection of treasures to take home and a large collection of litter for the garbage can.
Another wonderful Mother, Daughter memory to cherish forever.
One day I will come alone, my thoughts crying out with the birds...
"Where has my little girl gone?"
Mom walks swinging stick hitting branches,
sticks in mud sitting hopelessly.
Finds dragonfly and calls me over to look.
Finds a spider and yells(she is afraid of spiders)
Pokes around in the mud and water loking around.
Tells me what she finds.
Finds moss, Tells me I'm polluting because I farted(my mom tells me to put tooted.)
She looks beautiful in the wind while it blows her hair.
Skips around dumbingly.
She sees a fishing line and brings it over to me.
As she walks she does slow motion.
She looks around pulling at the branches, then pulls up her pant legs.
She finds more litter,
sees a bird flying in the air,
then she shows me how the sun hits the trees and makes them look light green tree(I wish I had the camera.)
These memories are the kind that will live on forever in my children.
arms and legs
"Well, my little junkie," I reply, "I can't give you hard-core drugs but you can have Rice Crispies."
Some people may be addicted to them, especially in their sugary form: Rice Crispie Treats. I should know, I'm one of them, I think to myself. Baby just claps her hands together and squeals.
Having kids is a hard job, one that can turn decent people into monsters, I've seen it first-hand. I've been shocked at how someone can scream insanely at their children for the littlest misdeed or normal behavior. I've seen children being yanked and shaken and smacked, shoved and hit. I understand people come to breaking points; I've been there over and over in my life. I had to reach out for help with my oldest son because I could not handle his behavior on my own. I smacked him a few times, so has his father. I'm mortified about it but am realize that sometimes it happens. But, when you are so out of control that you can't even control yourself in public, what happens when no one is looking? I don't want to imagine.
Usually I just cringe inside and my heart hurts for these innocent, powerless ones. I turn away sometimes, too, if I think I can't deal. I've only stepped in a few times if I thought I had to. Once, there was a man in line at the store that hit his small son with a hard blow to his head and was raising his hand for another blow. I jumped over in his line and grabbed his arm and quietly and firmly told him not to do that again, to the shock of Ex-asshole and my young older kids. The man yanked his arm away and started yelling at me to mind my own business. I calmly told him that it would be the police's business if he did it again and walked back to my own line. Even though he furiously yelled at me, he was no longer attacking his son. He soon calmed down. Good deed accomplished. It's funny, though, how back then I was able to unthinkingly come to the rescue of others but not myself. Back then I was terribly unhealthy. (Now I'm just annoyingly unhealthy.) : )
Once, I was struggling with the already-mentioned-son in a line at the store. The line was excruciatingly slow and he was picking things up, acting out, and would not listen. Nothing unusual for him. He was being pretty good for his usual standards. I just kept repeating over and over to him the warning, "You're gonna get punished...you're gonna get punished.", under my breathe. I was a little puzzled by the dirty looks I was getting from the fifty-ish woman in line behind me. Not enough to focus on. I continued my warning to my son. Then, suddenly, she poked me from behind and said loudly, loud enough for people to start staring in curiosity, "What did you say to him?!" I was a little startled and a lot confused and I asked her to repeat herself. She said, still loudly, "What did you say to him? Did you say you were going to punch him?!" I spurted out, "Nooo, I said that I was going to punish him!" And then, mortified, I stupidly apologized for not saying it clear enough so as there not be any confusion. "Oh, O.K.", she said, and the matter was settled. For her. As for me, my face burned with fire and I couldn't get out of there fast enough. Which was hard with my hands shaking as they were, and the check-out girl looking at me as if I was a loony. I felt slapped. For days. It didn't help with my already flaming agoraphobia, either.
Even though I have struggled all my life with inner (and outer) demons I have always felt that being a mother was natural to me. (At least after my second child was born. More about that another day.) It has always felt like the thing that I was meant to do. I never considered another profession. Yes, I did hold down other jobs throughout the years but none had ever felt comfortable to me. I didn't belong in that store or in that office. And I felt everyone else knew it, too. Like I had a T-shirt on that said, "My other shirt is an apron". And permanent boob milk stains, and permanent poo smell that clung in my hair. I never felt centered until I walked in the door where my kids were waiting, with their demands and wet kisses. I smiled as I wiped up spilled juice and dirty bottoms. Here was where I belonged. And luckily they thought so, too.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Any-hoo, I best be getting to those papers. They are calling to me. No, not literally, I'm not THAT crazy. Tee-hee...or am I?
My chest is stuffed up. There is a raw burn under my ribs. I can’t breathe. My jaw hurts from clenching it. My shoulders are tight and sore. I am stuffed up with rage. No one knows. I store it behind my ribs and shove the messy ends of it into the empty corners at the bottom of my belly. I have to be careful, or it will come loose. I learn to pat it like a cranky baby. I tell myself, “Oh, well.” and shrug.
When I am distracted by the things poking me or the thoughts pressing into the back of my eyes or pushing from my lips, I lose hold. The rage comes vomiting up from my stomach. I jerk it down hard and it shatters and settles around my heart like a quilt of icy-hot numbness. If I’m quick, no one sees.
Sometimes I scream, but you can’t hear it. It gets caught in my throat because I have a trap there. When I feel it coming I squeeze my lips together and press my tongue to the roof of my mouth and clench my jaw. I know it shows so I turn, hiding my face, and move my head back and forth to shake it down. I swallow and swallow. I raise my hand to my chest and pull it down the rest of the way. I tie it down, as tightly as I can. I can’t relax; I have to be on guard. It doesn’t stop trying to escape for long.
I can’t focus. I don’t want to focus. I want to drift into that sleepy world. I don’t want to think. I want to lay quiet and let my bones and tendons lay loose. I want to think of nothing. When I think it’s safe and I can’t move my aching body any more, I sneak into my room, close the door and lay on my bed. My thoughts and feelings float freely then. My chest and jaw relax. I let go of my heart. I let go of my mind. I want them to be free. They float up taking me with them. I go away without leaving.