Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Dakota Wolf

Sunday, June 28, 2009

oh darling there's this fever a woman gets...

song 'when i grow up'

Friday, June 26, 2009

Porn For Panic

Do it again, husband. Yes. Yes, and yes.

One Chapter Heading in my life would be called ' He Tells Her In The Car, Parked in the Dark of The Bookstore Parking Lot '. The children with grandparents, myself in an anxiety ridden frenzy, literally and psychologically trembling with the sickeningly persistent buzzing of a terrified soul, trapped inside a hive, the humming in my ears, in my heart. The fear. I was working my way toward a panic attack. I've ended up in the ER with Mr. Curry twice, from panic attack. He took me this time to the bookstore.

We sat in the car, holding hands, tears all over my face, dripping onto my arms like a humid Southern night. What if we die and we are nothing and never know that we were anything? And the timeless question that most of all kept sucking the life from my life and the blood from my veins: What Is The Point? Around us, the streetlamps flickered. A car pulled up, music booming into the quiet lot, snuffed suddenly out, the loud slam of the door, laughter, footsteps. Silence. 9pm rolled in with dark plasma sky. The books stood in solemn and silent rows in the front display of the bookstore. I thought I might scream. Tear out my hair, in the old fashioned expression of the poet's madness, or cut off an ear, like a great painter, or smack myself in the face, like an American Beauty. Mr. Curry held my hands firmly.

Maggie, he said.


Look at me.

I did.

He said nothing for a minute. The steam of crazy, of fear, of panic, was unbearable. I felt a sudden rush of pity for this sweet man, who loved such a lunatic, such a woman who could never ever forget the nature of existence was a parallel between horror and joy, pain and pleasure, love and fear, life and death, a woman who after the throes of orgasm is aware of what a wolf howl that bodily explosion is against the dying of the body. Why should he have to suffer because I could not escape my mind?

He pulled me close, to his face, so that I could feel his breath on my mouth. Maggie, he said. My husband is a mover. He works for Mayflower. He wears long shorts and tennis shoes and tee shirts and has a shaved head and many tattoos. He comes from a very hard drinking, hard living, very emotionally rough and enormous Irish family. He grew up hard. He experienced two great deaths at a young age. He was never coddled, or fussed over, or given any great opportunities. He barely eeked out a high school degree, befuddled at the time with drugs and drinking. He has been my best friend since I was 19. Maggie, he said,

If all there is. If all there is is THIS- you ( he kissed me ) and our children, and this tiny small life with all of us together in it, the whole way through, all of us together till the end, doing the best we can, then that is enough. That is enough.

And if I never knew what an epiphany was, I found out then. My mind cleared in a graceful curtsey, exiting the cortisol and adrenaline and gut pain of fear, and leaving the calm resolution of truth. In one small moment my consciousness talked to itself in some secret morse code, and I heard these things: I am not alone / I am experiencing life and there was one billion in a quadrillion chance that I, personally ME, who I am, would end up being born, and I made it, I did it, and in place of all those possible people who did not make it here, I will not whine, I will not worry / I am the stupidest wench ever if I cannot look at this man in front of me and spend this night loving him hard, loving him naked and sweaty and fiercely and with all of the trembling passion I was using up in this panic, and

that is exactly what I did.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Your tenderness is almost unbearable. Your skin, your mouth, the pink tint of your eyelids, the skin inside your thighs, your naked feminine parts, earlobes, the roundness of your big toe, like sea-stone, your unhinged uninhibited laughter, your squat on the toilet, song in the shower, your hiccuping tears, finger in nose, the open slice of your mouth in sleep, long long arms round Daddy's shoulders, long long legs wrapped round Daddy's waist, the honeysuckle delicious sugar of your breath, your soft self-talk during play, the fever of your complaints, your absolute unabashed need to be cared for, watched over, protected, loved.

Our silent knowledge that I will not write, even here, in case the words are magnets that draw power into our lives and make the possible true.

When bad things happen, you are the pulse that the family keeps watch by. You are the soft baby of the family, the newest born to this life, the changeling, the one whose eyes are still a star, innocent. If you are moving in your unconscious ease and trust, then we are doing our job. Your hurts are still transitory. Your pain sharp but once gone, totally forgotten. The moment still captures you entirely. If Mommy is sad and solemn faced, you are concerned, and then you are rolling in barrel laughter on the floor with Daddy. Your brothers alternately protect you and push you around. You trust the boundries of their tease.

I look into your face and your pliable limbs and I see much more than the beauty of youth. I see what is renewable and what is the spirit of human life, before we are more complicated with the deductions of our mind. You are the reminder that life moves swiftly and that the most true and comforting response is the one we allow in and allow out like blood through the arteries of the heart. In, out. In out. Your smile flashes like the sunlight through the curtains.

I love you beyond that curtain.

Thursday, June 18, 2009


The memory distills. Memory distills. It comes out whole and is mercilessly dessicated by the infinite neurological structures of the mind. We experience, we live, and we remember, and we call this remembering 'life', but it is not. It is the art we make of life. The image that holds the emotion in one shot. The snatches of words that encapsulate the beauty. The smell that recalls the terror.

I remember like this:

Dr. Tseng ' So your tests came out just fine..it looks like you are pregnant' his face smiling wide Asian smile

Mr. Curry on the cell phone ' What? Are you serious?' the sound of my footsteps echoing in the underground parking

Swinging open the doors of my work, my smile enormous, their faces expectant

The toilet's smooth clean white face, my vomit

My mom 'Let's celebrate! Let's go to dinner'

The store's long hallways of food making me sick

Mr. Curry's hands on my stomach

Lola singing to the baby

Dakota ' Mom! Congratulations! ' he is actually happy about this baby

Ian's easy acceptance

My voice 'Watch out for my stomach'

The ultrasound, the baby, the heartbeat, Mr. Curry's hand in my hand, his eyes

The night, the dark, the bed, the pain, the blood

' Wake up honey I think I'm having a miscarriage'


The rest for Mr. Curry and I. Memories that will never be remembered exactly right, colors off, faces changing, blurring, voices too high or too low, but the distillation will capture the right temperature of our hearts, the terror in the rushing sudden breaking of Nature in my body, the experience of human life in one rapid crack of the frozen lake, when we fall in the water and simply struggle to stay aware of what is happening.

Then, the smoke of memories.

*photo, Petrina Hicks

Sunday, June 14, 2009


The milk in my breasts is gone. My stomach is still unfamiliar to me, my body strangely soft and muted, like soil ready for planting. A kitten claws my toes. I cannot take a bath and I want to very much. I cannot have sex with Mr. Curry and I want to so very very much. He took me downtown to the Gaslamp District today for a food tasting tour. We went quietly from place to place, his arm around my waist, my hand on his broad thick back. I had a dollar margarita, then another, and then we were giggling and for the rest of the tour we flirted and kissed and bemoaned that we could not go home and tear our clothes off. I have to have my doctor appointment and be told when my body is ready for my husband. I don't know about my body right now. It is a stranger to me. I am exhausted. I am puffy faced. My health problems attached to Endometriosis have swung back into gear after being let loose at the gates with the miscarriage and surgery and blood transfusion and days of pain killers and little or no food. My stomach is swollen out in Irritability and I pop probiotics dutifully, take my Vitex to balance the hormones, the Fish Oil for it's magic powers, drink water, sleep. My face and gums hurt. I get migranes. My body is leaking strange sap and I am creaking along trying to nurture myself back to health. I want a baby so badly my uterus flutters and it feels as though our baby is still in there. I had a moment where I thought Maybe...Maybe there was twins? And they missed one? Mr. Curry's sympathetic look when I mentioned this was all I needed. I knew it was crazy. My mind is swampy. I am afraid when Mr. Curry goes to work he will die in a car accident. I keep this to myself. I am afraid I will not get pregnant again. Mr. Curry won't hear of it. We will, he insists, we will, and don't let yourself believe anything else.

We sent the kids to my mom's on Saturday. I was a mess. I could not think, the buzzing in my head so loud, a migrane, and exhaustion- my thyroid is surely all out of whack again, and I need an adjustment. Mr. Curry worked for extra cash and the boys were mercilessly teasing Lola, so I finally snapped and yelled at them how selfish and mean they were being, because they could see that she had no one, and Daddy was sleeping and I was hurting and they had each other and their sister needed their protection and ...and... Mr. Curry woke up, accessed the situation and got us all out of the house. We dropped Ian off at his mom's and L and D off at my mom's and went home and cuddled and kissed and I gave Mr. Curry a very good time for a wreck of a wife. We watched a forgettable movie and I mused on the guilt bothering my stomach. My kids, my kids, my kids...I called, and they were fine, fine. Playing with Grandma. Ready for bed. I'm sorry, I told them, I know I yelled, and I'm sorry. When they came home today, we all behaved beautifully all day. Dakota and I spent two hours bathing the dogs in the bathtub, ridding them of fleas. My back hurts.

I am home and I would not want to be anywhere else.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Gimme Shelter

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


I sat at the keyboard last night, fingers on the keys, trying to write out this thing in my heart, but the words would not come. This is not something I am used to. I tried again later, after dinner, and still, no words. Silence. Just the sounds of the kittens crawling round and jumping and playing and mewing, and the dogs randomly barking, Dakota wrestling with Mr. Curry, Lola walking round the house the way she does so often, singing and talking to herself, playing with her dolls. This morning, my heart bursting, I still had silent fingers. This hour, I went to the list of blogs I follow, and read NieNie's new entry, entitled Love. And the words came unstuck from my heart and began pushing and moving toward my fingers.

Yesterday we had to put one of our kittens to sleep. The black one that L called Boo. He was breathing strangely and not moving much and although he wasn't in pain, something was wrong. I took him to the vet, L at my side, and the vet examined him carefully, sweetly. She let me know we had to have an X-ray to know what was wrong. I drove home and took down the silver pot from the secretary I was handed down from Grandma Elizabeth, and drew out $200 dollars from the Rent Money. I stood there with those hundred bills in my hand and tried to understand what was the right thing to do. If I spent that money, we wouldn't have enough for rent. If I didn't spend it, we wouldn't know what was wrong with the kitten, and we could either let him suffer or have him put to sleep when possibly he was meant to live a long and happy life. I knew there wasn't truly a black or white answer. Morality is not stagnant, when the two questions you ask yourself each could hurt someone. I knew Mr. Curry would not choose to spend the money. He would think of our family first, and how the landlord has already extended so much goodwill when we bounced two checks after my Endometriosis surgeries two years ago, and how very difficult it would be for us to rent a new place, for various reasons. Mr. Curry is the protector of our family interests first and foremost, and because of this he is a sanctuary, my safety. I stood with the money in my hand but I knew I had to get the kitten that X-ray. A gross numbness came over me as I thought of our baby, born at 13 weeks, already gone, which is of course, what I had been thinking of all day. I just couldn't bear how I knew I would feel in the next weeks if I let the kitten die without at least trying.

Mr. Curry came home as I was contemplating, and I swooshed the kids into another room so I could talk to him alone. I explained the situation to him carefully and told him I understood so much how he would feel about it, and how upset I felt thinking of upsetting him. He could have been so angry. It's hard in a marriage when a person makes a decision that directly affects you in a negative way and you didn't have a say in it. He sighed and put his hands around me and I knew by the look in his eye he would let me do this thing, and he would understand. And he did.

The kitten had the Xray, and the poor little thing had his intestines all smushed up into his chest cavity, an abdominal hernia of the diaphram, probably due to our dog Wolfgang and his enormous love of kittens, always licking them. We keep the kittens apart from the dogs all night and anytime we aren't home, but we do let them mix in the living room when we are there, and Wolfgang must have picked him up in his mouth, probably gently, the vet said, but for a kitten that tiny, it's not gentle enough, and the small tear was enough to do this damage. The available surgery was $1000 and without gaurantee the kitty would survive. We had to put him down. Lola sobbed and sobbed and Mr. Curry met us at the vet; he talked to Lola in that soothing, difinitively male voice that has comforted me through so much, and had L and I leave while he held the kitten as it went to sleep.

He came home with the kitten in a box as he promised Lola, dug a hole in the backyard, and L placed a note inside before Mr. Curry buried Boo. We put roses on the top of the cement blocks, placed so no animal dug up the grave. I looked at the header Mr. Curry marked 'Boo' and the numbness began to wear off. I felt sick and sad. Losing the baby makes me hyper aware, as it does with most, of the losses possible in life. I could lose anyone I love at any moment. Death strips away the safety net we have between us and this constant awareness, and I have been left raw and constantly aware of how fragile life is.

Mr. Curry and his strong and loving hand on my back as we sped to the hospital the night we lost our baby. Mr. Curry and his firm voice with the nurses, telling them what they must and would do for his wife. Mr. Curry and his eyes, his enormous Irish long fringed and green-brown eyes, on me like a meditation and a prayer, a conduit that allows me to experience love in a way that I have never before-- love not only as a feeling, but as an action. Love in works. Love in his all night vigil at my side. Love in his constant protection of me, not because he thinks I am weak, or incapable, but because we both deeply believe that marriage is a sanctuary and that sanctuary is built on the knowing that even if we are opening our mouths in ugly pain or anger or having childish tantrums of the spirit or acting out some wounded misunderstanding born of childhood griefs, our hands are linked, our paths are in the same direction: we struggle greatly, neither has had an easy life from the start- but love in action has been our guiding light and has contiunued to surprise me and upflift me at the most unexpected times. Mr. Curry and his smile. Mr. Curry and his sweaty head pressed against my face as the doctor took away our baby. Mr. Curry and his drunken laughter at parties. Mr. Curry and the long fullness of his beautiful body pressed against mine in nakedness. Mr. Curry and our children. This is marriage? I never knew.

I can say my heart is broken. I can say my heart is full. I can say that I have had a terribly hard and sad life in many ways. I can say that few are as lucky as I.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The First Week Without

I take a Percocet for the pain. It gives me also a brief reprieve from the worst of it , which is in my chest and my stomach and under the bones where my heart is, a physical mass of empty space and pain and infinitely impossible yearning, otherwise known as loss. It is after I take a Percocet that I am writing this. Mr. Curry has taken L and D to my nephew's birthday party. For the children life needs to be part sadness and mostly living and this is the way they will learn about grieving. For me I am still in a small hole and Mr. Curry is the only person that is there with me. I move around the house in the grace of his love and his protection and this is a gift I have and treasure more than is possible to express. His eyes reflect the thoughts and feelings I have about our baby that is gone and we do not have to talk. Sometimes when he is pressing his mouth onto mine I feel such a mix of love and grief that I cannot sit still and have to stand up and move about.

Mr. Curry came home from the hospital briefly to take down the pictures of our baby on the fridge. He moved all the baby things into the spare room which is now filled with the stroller, the bouncy seats, the expensive and safe carseat, the baby book which is the exact one as the babies brothers and sister have, already part way filled with messages from all of us when we found out we were expecting, and the books from Kristi, my sister in law, stacked and full of information about birthing and labor that had nothing to do with what happened to me and Mr. Curry and this baby. Mr. Curry came back to the hospital and slept in a cot crammed next to my hospital bed. Every time I had to pee he had to navigate the many wires connected to the saline, morphine and blood attached by slim tubes into my arms. My arms are covered in large bruises. The sweet and miserable male nurse could not get the tubes in and Mr. Curry held my head in his arms as the nurse tried again and again until I thought he might cry himself.

All night I slept and woke and cried as I made my way to the bathroom, Mr. Curry holding and holding my wheeled pharmacy and making comforting noises and telling me how much he loves me and telling me he knows.

My house has flowers in bunches. My work sent the most beautiful roses with a card that said they love me very much and can't wait to have me back at work and is signed 'your family' and that card truly gave me a moment of peace and I feel so lucky to have such people in my life.
My mom came over and made dinner and cleaned this week. My sister in law Kristi ordered and paid for a delicious dinner from Pat and Oscars. I am very blessed to have love in my life. Dakota has been so loving and thoughtful that I find myself crying thinking of it. He is almost 15 but has the emotional wisdom and compassion of a truly special soul. When I came home he held me and told me he loved me many times. He cleaned and brought me water and told me that he was so proud of me and that I am not alone. These are the things that matter and the only things that truly can help. Dakota did laundry and walked the dogs and held me last night as I cried unexpectedly in the living room until Mr. Curry came over and took his place. I checked in with him this morning to make sure he wasn't overwhelmed with that and he told me sternly never to apologize for grieving and that is what family is for. I wish so badly our baby could have known and been loved in this family. Lola has had the hardest time outwardly. She has had one of those sudden maturings children have when they experience loss. She is understanding that death is real and not just something for old people or movies. We have kept a flow of grieving and snuggling with gentle activities so that the children don't get mired.

I am so sad for Mr. Curry. I know in some ways the experience of this for me was traumatic because it happened to and in my body, but I think for Mr. Curry he is having to try to grasp this horrible thing that happened without any physical reality to link it to. I never realized or had thought about what happens when you lose a baby that is this far along, as far as the process and how you have a labor and a birthing and your body acts as if you had a baby but there is no baby. The pain of that is something Mr. Curry and I have to try to accept but it is hard and I find myself getting furious at my body. My breasts are full and have milk. My stomach is soft and full. Last night I was crying with Mr. Curry when L was asleep and I just hit myself in the stomach in anger. I was furious with myself for not taking my prenatals soon enough and not always sleeping on my left side and for having thyroid problems and for being so sick I couldn't eat my vegetables. I was furious for my body letting this happen to our baby. I don't expect to have peace with this. Some things can only be tolerated.

I so appreciate all the comments and emails of support. Coming here and reading them gives me comfort and especially those of you who have gone through this can understand.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Our Baby Is Gone.

Monday night I began miscarrying. Mr. Curry took me to the ER. After an hour or two I
birthed our baby. My body wouldn't stop bleeding. I lost too much blood. I had surgery.
I had a blood transfusion. I am home. Our family is is mourning.
My little baby had
passed away a week ago apparently. There was nothing anyone could do.
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