Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Picture Worth A Thousand Words



the mother woke on Saturday and immediately set herself. before opening her eyes she was priming herself for strength. this day will be good, she thought, this day will be good. she pulled her hair into a giant, floppy topknot and put on enough makeup to look if not refreshed, then less tired. she wore the dress, the one worn so often in the last two years it was thinning and sagging, coming unplucked. this Halloween at the pumpkin patch was a first. neither of her sons would be there, not the oldest- who hadn't come last year, either- nor the younger, just turned 18 and suddenly vibrating with a restless energy to launch himself away from any obligations of family. despite the mother's heartsore missing of these boys- eternally so, in her eyes- this is the only childhood the girls get. she knew that. she valued that. she honored that by rising to meet any joy that would meet her halfway.

the oldest daughter was turning thirteen as quickly as Sleeping Beauty's finger pricked that spindle, and her lanky beauty, so like her missing Aunt Lura, was becoming carved with the ferocious critiques of a teenage girl. the mother was becoming stupider and more embarrassing to the oldest daughter at a rate so rapid this year that she felt subhuman, reduced to a clumsy bunch of laugh track one liners that left the audience scrolling through their iPhones. still, the oldest daughter deeply loves the mother, and her sister, and her father, and her brothers- whose absence she fussed over that morning, braiding her long, blonde hair- and all her pack, so there is a smile underneath narrowed parameters of her gaze, if you look for it. you are twelve, the mother hummed in a little song all morning, you are twelve years old, lalala, twelve, you are, lalala. there were only two months left of twelve.

the littlest daughter was thrilled when she went to bed- nursing to sleep- and thrilled when she woke up, rubbed her eyes and bounded out of bed, tearing off her underwear and crowing ' i am going pee!  come on, Momma! ' the littlest daughter was in love with her family, from the two dogs with horrifically bad breath to the kitten that procured many time outs for the little girl, all the way up the totem pole to her grandparents. she was the smallest of a large family, and she felt, as did her older sister, the safety net of that love and support in her every step. unlike the older daughter, the littlest daughter was happily and totally immersed in her pack, and not straying at the edges with a restless flick of hair. the littlest knew the pumpkin patch meant the horse ride, and ice cream, and movement. movement was life, and life was happiness. 

the father woke earlier than everyone else in the family, as usual. during the workday he woke at 5:30am, sometimes earlier if the job called for it, and often on family excursions he paced annoyed but patient as the three girls pulled brushes through their hair, jeans over their legs, lotion on their skin. he was priming himself, also. this day will be good, he thought. i'm going to make this day good. his eyes were swollen and the arch of his back and neck were curved as if already exhausted. yet he stood in the beautifully lit valley basin and snapped a photo of the three girls. and it was good.

this family: everyone doing something for everyone else, all but the smallest, who did for everyone what she knew nothing of, but was essential- loved unconditionally and easily, found joy in everything.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Dakota's band at The Viper Room


how can my son be 20 years old and playing at The Viper Room?

because time and reality are experienced by us in such a limited way. sometimes i do wonder if everything happens. sometimes it feels like everything has happened, like i can feel all the options and detours moving toward their conclusions, and the fork that this life takes is only one fork that my one mind in this plane can follow. sometimes i think that at the exact moment i embrace my oldest son i am also holding him as an infant, a toddler, a child, each and every moment happening like a chorus alongside this embrace, in this moment. i can feel those tributaries rushing all around us, as if i could simply move and place my hand in the river of my son at two years old, and be there, pull my hand out, and be back here. 

and sometimes i just think, AWESOME

Friday, October 24, 2014

People In Your Neighborhood

take a trip and read!


I got sucked into a 'Between Two Ferns' and watched like eight of these. This one with Brad Pitt that's been going round gets me when Brad whispers ' I like that song..' The interviews with Sean Penn and Charlize Theron and believe it or not, Bruce Willis, were especially funny. 'Whatchu talkin about Willis?' hahahaha!

Halting Schizophrenia Before It Starts- exciting new research reported on NPR

In The Gaurdian, a man from a well known image of himself hanging off the Golden Gate Bridge, contemplating suicide, talks about what happened.

Love is Not Enough

This woman featured in Daily Mail Online has the same stage endometriosis I do. It breaks my heart to read of someone being completely ruled by chronic pain. I spent my 20's in pain, and it took so much of my life. I wish she would try nutrition and lifestyle as healing therapies. Those have changed it all for me.

I can't remember how I came across this little girl's story, but now I can't get it out of my heart. She was Lola's age, and hit and killed by a man in a stolen car. Her little sister was badly injured and remains in a coma, and their mother is still hospitalized. You can find many news stories about this online. It's both beyond imagining and all too easily imagined for me. The heartache is vast and agonizing for this little family. The man who hit them ( they were just about to leave a busstop ) ran away from the scene, leaving the minivan on top of the three. If you have 5 or 10 or ??? dollars you can give, please do. Justice for Joie Sellers

This is an incredible piece of work in Orion magazine: Exposed If you are a woman, I hope you choose to read this. It is not only beautifully written, but incredibly important and timely and wonderfully researched and fleshed out. The writer weaves her personal story of possible breast cancer with the facts, science and research on breast cancer detection.

A list of the 10 best non fiction books of 2013. You had me at booklist.

Can I go? 




Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Preschool Halloween Short Story




I came into the living room to find all the Halloween decorations gone- the pumpkin faces, the standing ghost.
' Ever, ' I asked, ' where are all the decorations? '
Ever answered casually ' I put them in the garage. '
I said ' The garage? Why?! '
She answered slowly, as if speaking to a very stupid person, ' Because Momma, they were all LOOKING at me when I was playing. '

Saturday, October 18, 2014

People In Your Neighborhood

take a seat and read!


Me, trying to fit into my skinny jeans

"Be like water " the revelations of Bruce Lee

This small article contains such a profound, unique thought. The Healing Machine 

If your child plays on artificial turf, you should be aware of this.

When old, often famous photos get colorized, it's pretty startling and wonderful.

The discovery a super cancer fighting berry prompts testing

I am a big Agatha Christie fan and grew up reading her murder mysteries. I had no idea that she had disappeared at one point and the amazing, Gone Girl plot that went along with the disappearance.
Wow.

From NPR: A Montana Doctor's experience of one month of treating Ebola patients. As awful and heart-breaking as you would expect. Thank god for the brave and compassionate.

 This article, Letting Go by Atul Gawande in The New Yorker, should be read with care. It made me weep, and I finished it with a stomachache, AND it is important to read and take in and consider. In addition, it is beautiful storytelling combined with thought. Everyone who is going to die should read this.

Dirge, by the incomparable Edna St Vincent Millay

Your gut contains your 'second brain', that is all powerful over your emotions. ( Treating anxiety by treating your gut is important, for instance ) It is the center of your immunity as well. 7 Foods That Will Work Wonder On Your Digestion


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

the affair

i want a truth that feels like you. i want this roadway to rut, birth trees. i want pikes of green and the long haul. i want water on my feet. i want the jut of my breasts stung by cold. i want the hoary back of old hills on one side, the slit of running water on the other. i want a solitary cry. myself. owl. wolf. i want holes in the sides of mountains to tremble like the inside of a mouth. i want the sky to thrust and parry, kill with cold. i want the pinpricks of rain so cold it feels like ice. i want my lips to swell. i want endless lazy grass. i want dirt that smells like health. i want bone marrow strong as an oxe. i want worms through my toes, red ants the size of jelly beans, fish that throw themselves toward the sky as if they think they can fly. i want the heat of fire. i want the sun to peel me like paint off a barn. i want my freckles as bold as soot. i want the blue in my eyes to be confused with cold, when it is heat. i want the hair on my legs to tangle. i want the swell between my legs as strong as the tang of a peeled orange. i want my feet to find the ground again, this pebble, this stone, this soil, this water, this grave, this bed of seeds. everything is here. i want a truth that opens like the land and births mountains and oceans. i want a truth that sets me free. i will find it like coal. i will be covered in soot. i will find it like a gold. i will be afraid of the dark. i will find it like a pearl. i will nearly drown. i will find it like Dorothy. i was already home.

image from julia blog ( cannot find link…did she delete her blog?)

Saturday, October 4, 2014

People In Your Neighborhood

take a seat and read

Blog ' A Cup of Jo ' interviews Lena Dunham.

One of my closest friends, Taymar, had a baby boy recently, Benny. He's THE CUTEST. She wrote this incredibly honest, deeply moving blog post on her pregnancy with Benny, who has Down Syndrome.

Another friend of mine, the talented and irrepressible Jen Pastiloff, had her essay We Are Not Dead up at The Rumpus.  I love this writing. I love the story, the voice, the details. She is SO talented, and you can look out to hear her name more in the future, because she is definitely going to keep blowing our socks off.

Sign this petition to support help for children in Syria.

Benny Cucumber as King Richard

Roche breast cancer drug 'unprecedented' in extending lives. However, we also really need to be talking about and educating ourselves and our children about prevention

This was a gut wrenching, upsetting week for the writing community that I am part of. ( i don't know what that means, other than overlapping friends of friends of friends all who are writers and run the gamut from FB friends to best friends 'IRL') Here's one reason why.

I became obsessed with the Mitford family ( like so many before me ) and entrenched in their drama a few years ago when I read my first Mitford biography. I was off, and have read many more books by and about those amazing, sometimes horrible, always incredibly sharp and interesting sisters. The last of the famous original group has died, Deborah Mitford, and The End of the Mitford does a nice write up summary if you are interested in what they are about.

So this is the kind of thing I"ve been reading about lately regarding my health, and it sucks.  I'm in pain, and scared. But I'm also OK, and able to sleep, and mostly not scared. In other words, I don't spend my days in a panic.  I have come along way with anxiety over the years, so for that, a motherfucking SALUTE. Also a grateful shout out to my mother, who is a fount of knowledge regarding nutritional and supplemental therapies for disease, and who makes the most amazing veggie quinoa chicken soup ever. xo








Wednesday, October 1, 2014

popsicles and showers


summertime at auntie kristi's, now gone.

fall is here.

time for showers with goggles.


Monday, September 29, 2014

Meet Maybelle


Lola got a kitten.
After asking for a year, and agreeing to all kinds of responsibilities which I repeated ad nauseam, she still wanted a kitten.
We found her online and went with Ed to a shady part of town where some really sweet college age guys who sounded Romanian had let their Siamese cat get pregnant, and Maybelle was one of two kittens left from that litter. Covered in fleas and shy, we brought her home. Lola bathed her, cuddled her, fed her, and took her to bed, and Maybelle never looked back. I have had animals my whole life, including kittens, and I've never seen a kitten adapt and bond so immediately. Maybelle is actually sleeping on the top of my back as I write this, wedged in between my back and the chair. She loves all of us, and we love her. Even if I did have to put Ever in time out today for twirling her maypole wand around Maybelle's neck for the tenth time. 
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