Her Bad Mother

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Pitiless, The Mercy Of Time

When a family loses a child, we feel it. Whether or not we knew that family, whether or not we knew that child, we feel it. We feel it because the shockwaves of that loss - that loss as felt by the mother, the father, the family, the friends, the community, that loss as felt by the world, because surely the earth itself shudders, a little bit, when one of its flowers is cut too soon - the shockwaves of that loss reach into our very souls, to the furthest corners of our souls where we keep, hidden in the dark, away out of sight, our worst fear. And the shockwaves of that loss - snapping, lashing, electric - light up those dark corners and awaken the beast of our fear and we tremble.

We tremble because we know. Every single one of us has imagined what it would be like to lose a child. Every single one of us has lived and relived this imaginary terror. Each and every one of us has held our children in our arms and felt the warmth of their breath on our neck and had a single, heart-stopping thought: what if? And then we've all squeezed our children more tightly and waited until our hearts resumed their beat before letting go, a little sadder, a little older, a lot more grateful for the time that we have.

So when someone runs out of time, when someone is forced to really let go, let go let go let go, we know. And our hearts stop for them, for knowing.

My heart stopped today. I am sadder, older, more grateful, now that it has resumed its beat.

Requiescat in pace, Madeline Alice Spohr. Your home, now, is timelessness.

(Donations to March of Dimes in Maddie's name can be made here. Online memorial to Maddie is here. If Heather's - Madeline's mom - site doesn't load when you click the link in her name, be patient; the server was overloaded and the site is being moved.)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Story Not My Own

This story that I`ve been telling about my brother - my lost brother - is not my story, not really. It is becoming my story - that is, it is becoming a story that matters to me, a story that involves me, a story that I am driving forward and that is driving me forward and so has become part of me, part of my life, mine - but still. At the end of the day, it is not my story. It is my mother`s story.

She is telling it here.

And it is breaking my heart all over again.

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Monday, April 6, 2009

Mondays Are For Zombies

It's Monday, it's raining and I think that my house might be haunted. It's either that or the cats are messing with me. Odds are good either way.

Yeah, Monday. What's there to say that hasn't already been said a thousand times already by the Boomtown Rats?

1.) So my mother calls me Friday afternoon and says this: "I just sent you another post to publish. You're going to kill me."

Me: "Why?"

Her: "Because it's about that time you brought home a stripper."


Her: "I had too."

Me: "He wasn't really a stripper, and I didn't really 'bring him home,' in the sense that 'bring home' implies."

Her: "He said he was a stripper, and he was in our house."

Me: "STILL."

Her: "Wait 'til I tell the story about the first time that you and I talked about hand jobs."


2.) Traveling around the world isn't getting me away from my mother and her blog-cum-child-torment-device, but it is providing some amazing insights into just how much mothers around the world have in common. You should join in.

3.) You know that I'm not really all that outraged about my mother's blog, right? If anything, it's a boon. There's no reason for me to write lengthy essays explaining why I'm so messed up when my mother's out there giving the world a live demonstration.

4.) I have an essay in this book. You should buy it.

5.) I also have an essay in this book. You should buy it, too.

6.) Oh, yeah, and this one too. More than one essay, actually. So maybe buy more than one copy of this one. You know, so that you can fully appreciate the breadth of my talent.

7.) I guess Monday is not all that bad when you wake up and realize that, yes, you are, kind of, a published author and that's kind of awesome. And odds are that neither the cats nor the ghosts have themselves ever been published. So. They can just suck it.

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