Mother’s Day

Why do I like this made-up feshta so much? (I live in a Portuguese area and everything important has an sh in it.) Mother’s Day, Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day.

More than any other it honors the love behind it all. Whether its mom or sister or spouse or best friend, its a love day for the ladies, way more than any Valentine’s might be. Its a day the pressure is mostly off, for me. I don’t have a partner, so its not like i have someone to grill burgers for lunch, so its not that kind of pressure. There’s just some lessening of the code, some ‘i don’t care, just leave your phone in the car’ time with the kids, some pleasure mixed in with favorite foods or take out for dinner, or this year? This year we got to go to my Mom’s, in person, unmasked. My middle kid was giving everyone long hugs, even though he lives with some of us. I’ll take it. My kids told me thank you and I love you multiple times all day, though it was primarily that middle kid again. He does make me smile. I chose to keep my eldest home from a soccer game that was smack dab in the middle of it, and he didn’t give me too much grief, and got a chance to talk to him grandmother and aunt and actually give them a chance to find out who he is, as he grows into his young man self.

That was pretty fucking great.

And yes, I know what a tricky day it is. And I am grieving my mother-in-law who is still alive, and I know this a day of a lot of grief for many many. There is no way not to mention the layers that there are here. Women. Its all the women of the world and what for many of us, is a nurturing capacity. whether we have access to that part of us is massive. And with whom and how the nurture is shared is a multiplicity. Fur babies, friends, step-children? And probably some don’t have it, and how does society view them? There is also so much loss, loss of babies, loss of moms, loss of possibility for babies. Its all in this one day, somehow. Its hard to hide from it, and even I don’t want to see the social media world on this day. There is too much that looks like ‘perfect’, and I don’t want to see it.

My best friend in the world told me that if she could choose anyone in the world to be her mother, it would be me.

And so my heart broke open, and the skies poured down baby rainbows and dandelion puffs. And I loved it. I would do it in a flash. Anyone else need me ? I’m offering the nurture here, free. I’ll bring tea and an extra blanket, maybe some lozenges, and a hand hold, and a shoulder squeeze.

love you all, and holding you in a long hug.



Not working, and the country is on fire, and has been for four hundred years.

well. i’m supposed to be writing, for work. and i’m not. shocking, i know.

this is what i’ve done this morning instead of writing.

laundry. dishwasher. ordered seeds for the yard, calendula, valerian, zinnia, and lovage.

I’m going to figure out what to do with tons of calendula this year. You bet your ass I am.

texted with an old friend who i asked to yell at me and he did.

texted with another old friend who got saucy. it was funny but distracting and i was taken aback.

ate some crackers. made myself an instant coffee (sign of the apocalypse, yes.)

made a schedule for errands this afternoon which include finally watching one of the classes I signed up for, assuming I get another thousand words written.

I found a birds nest in the rhododendron. No eggs yet but I figured out how I can look without touching.

I have no self-bribery system set up. The floodgates are down and I’m not withholding anything and if I want candy, I go buy it, furthering the ‘not working’. This is the complete dissolution of productivity, folks. utter dissolution.

My inner core says the work will still get done. Am I doing drugs without my knowledge?

These are the things guys.

And I’m still not shot because my inspection sticker is out of date. Its’ literally not even conceivable. Right? What about you?

close up photography of zinnia flowers
Zinnias, Photo by Swapnil Chakraborty on


I don’t.

I don’t feel like writing about the horror of my kitchen sink, because the horror of life in America is too strong right now.

I don’t feel like telling you about online dating and heartaches and my sometimes really deep loneliness because I’m not shot in my bed.

I don’t feel like crafting some clever narrative of how funny it is to be around kids who are so damn smart because my babies and I have an obscene amount of financial priviledge and I don’t get shot and left on the street for six hours like road kill.

I don’t want to tell you how often I wonder where the right-to-lifers are when it comes to human beings, grown ones. What if the angry white texans/floridians/arkansas-ians flooded the streets in Minneapolis (Detroit, Newark, Houston, Baltimore), demanding the guns of the police? Demanding new judges who will see things their way? Demanding change at the highest levels of government because goddamnit, everyone has a right to live and killing people is one of those pesky commandments?

I don’t want to talk to you about my fucking houseplants.

black mother putting jeans on shouting baby
Photo by William Fortunato on

awkward naked feather

I just wrote the line: he put her down like an awkward, naked feather.

i’m so in love with that line. i really am. (i’m sure it will get edited out.) sex and nakedness and people, are all so damn messy. Like a pig in mud, we’re supposed to revel in it, the muck of life. if failure is our biggest teacher or our death, shouldn’t we be running towards it?

“Let me make all the mistakes!” she says as she runs through the field.


But we don’t do that. Certainly not once we’re out of our teens. All the fear and the ‘i’m just not like that.’ or the ‘i like it like this’ or ‘i’ve worked very damn hard to get to this place’. all that. those things that keep us from running out into the wilderness to fight the bears. There are people who LIKE BEIGE, people.

I mean, I don’t actually want to fight a bear. I am aware that i would lose. Utterly. But I know there is a lot that I have not done. And I’m curious. And yes, I’m a mom to three and a daughter and a sister and so on, so I have ties to the earth.

But I do think about taking a shaman’s journey. Running off into the woods or the desert for a week, and seeing what I find. Not as an escape, but as a journey. A visionquest. I’ve wanted to do something like that for a long time, though I know it would be much harder than I understand, I want to rely on myself utterly for a time.

This is partly in reaction to imminently losing someone i love*. it is also something i’ve wanted for years. I’ve thought: is there a way i can gather this sensation, this feeling of ‘journey’ within my own life, my own space? Could I somehow alter my house? live in a tent in the backyard? I shake my head at these, I know they don’t cut it.

So I’m wondering.

and… when i go look at pictures of tents in wild places, i think maybe a cabin would be better. 🙂 i mean, i REALLY don’t want to fight a bear. ok?

tent with fence on dry land in daytime
No ‘roughing it’ in this tent. Photo by Rachel Claire on

*I keep trying to get my mother-in-law on the phone. I can’t. I don’t know if they’ve hooked me to an empty room by accident, if she is asleep or if she’s forgotten what to do with a phone. I don’t want to spend any time wondering if the last time I saw her will be the last time I saw her. Fucking humanity. I’ve been losing sleep again, burping what I call ‘grief burps’ through the night. I just want a fucking phone call.


… and taxes, motherfucker.

My mother in-law, former mother in-law, friend for 30 years, is going into hospice this month some time, if not this week. I have tried to start writing about her, and have over the years, certainly, but it is currently too raw, and she’s not dead yet, and so i want to spend my time trying to get her on the phone. Real always being preferable to memory. always. i say. my heart is wounded and throbs.

don’t you say the real is more than the memory? don’t you? the touch? the skin? the shared space? laughing? hugging?

I was there last wednesday, dropping off a lasagna and I sat and had a grilled cheese sandwich that my 88 year old father-in-law made for me when he heard I was coming over. Her memory is shot so he wasn’t at all sure I was actually coming, or what day I might be coming. We talked about my family, her cousins, death. I actually brought it up because 1. i had been thinking about my own, and 2. I think we should all talk to our elders about it. Expecting it is a whole different experience, I think, and I want to know what it is like.

I said that, for myself, I didn’t fear it, as long as I could remove my thoughts of the kids from the equation. Worrying about them ruined it all. She agreed, saying something along the lines of ‘what the hell else can you do? You die? you die!’.

I am a thousand times certain that I have loved her and been loved by her for 30 years. How lucky am I ?