When I was young my mother gave me her empty spice jars. Empty plastic spice jars of Schilling bay leaves. Little metal boxes once filled with white pepper.
The smell of the dried spices still lingered in the containers, like ghosts of meals past. I loved playing house with them, setting them in neat rows on an old quilt in the backyard which was my “island”.
Last night I opened a little jar of curry, and found it empty. Thrilled with nostalgia, I knew just what to do. I rinsed the jar out and gave it to Zoe.
She lit up like a bonfire and took it to her room.
At that moment I realized, in all crystal clearness, that I am a mom.
“Who is my daddy?”
The first time Zoe asked me this, I didn’t know how to answer. I thought I was prepared for this question. She was three then, and after seeing daddy’s pick up their kids every day at preschool, she began to wonder. Where’s mine?
“I’m not sure where he is.”
This was true. Kind of. I really know he is in Montana. He will never leave. But I could fake that I didn’t know. After all, young boys move all the time. Being the free spirit that he is, I half expected and half hoped that he would do something wonderful with his life and become a successful artist, living in a cool studio in Alphabet City.
“Why doesn’t he want to see me?”
Explaining this to her is like describing music to a deaf person.
“He can’t take care of you like I can.”
This is true.
Every day she looks more and more like him. They could be twins. I think she is gorgeous.
I am waiting for that day when she asks me to find him. I am waiting for that day when she is engulfed in teenage angst and threatens to run away and live with him.
I can’t help but feel guilt on so many levels. He should know her. She should know him.
We had an agreement. He can’t take care of himself, let alone a child. I didn’t want him to feel regret, or feel pain or obligation. This was my decision, and I expect nothing from him.
But still, every time I brush her wild hair, or look into her almond eyes, or receive that giant, wide grin, I see his face, and I wonder how happy he would be if he could see her now.
The bad news is: I’m stuck.
The good news is: I know a lot of amazing people who will help me un-stick.
I should have known better.
Mother’s Day. The parents came up from Portland for brunch and hanging out, and my mom was deliriously happy to have her hands in the dirt and be my yard guru. As a rookie gardener (I’ve had houseplants before, maybe some cactus or an herb or two, but never a whole YARD), I depended solely on my mom’s advice, even though I know her advice is a complete crapshoot. So when she bought me a jug-o-Roundup I said Thank You, put it in the garage and followed her advice to “spray it on that patch of weeds and in-between the cracks in the cement”.
Yesterday I hauled out the big plastic bottle of weed killer and read the simple instructions: spray on leaves, as the Roundup contains a magical enzyme that kills the problem. Simple! Easy! Alrighty!
Something in my gut felt weird as I sprayed the mystery liquid. I wanted to hide the bottle from my neighbors. I felt like I was doing something wrong. Roundup. I was unsure, but continued my savagery. I wore flip flops, a tank top and a skirt. I stepped on some high grass that was doused in the chemicals. A few rogue drops landed on my bare toes. I didn’t wear gloves.
This morning I told my co-worker (and organic gardening veteran) about my Roundup experience. It felt like a confession. I felt like a typical obese American who can’t be bothered with actually BENDING DOWN to pull a weed, or, even better, learn to accept and live among them. I felt like a little girl who did what my mom told me to, even though it wasn’t what I wanted to do. I felt like a lame rookie gardener. And I felt a wee bit squeamish, especially after reading this: http://www.organicconsumers.org/monsanto/roundup.cfm
“Roundup shows adverse effects in all standard categories of toxicological testing, including medium-term toxicity, long-term toxicity, genetic damage, effects on reproduction, and carcinogenicity.”
If my next child is born with two heads, now you know why.
I’ve been having these incredibly vivid yet boring dreams lately. It’s making my life rather confusing. You see, this morning I went into my room to grab a pair of mint green underwear that I had folded the night before and placed on my dresser. I walked into the room and…the undies weren’t there. I could have sworn I spent a good amount of time last night folding laundry, and I was absolutely positive that I set out some choners for this morning. Positive!
And then things got a little fuzzy.
Wait. Did I fold laundry last night? Do I even own a pair of mint green unders? Actually, no. Now I remember. I didn’t fold laundry. But I dreamed I did.
Similar things have happened. I went to check my Facebook account becuase I just accpeted a friend request from an old pal. Only her account wasn’t there. It didn’t exist. I only dreamed about it.
It makes me wonder if perhaps even this isn’t happening. I could potentially wake up and check my blog tomorrow morning, only to realize that once again I dreamed of doing the mundane activities that I do in my waking life.
This bed reminds me of Thailand.
From This is Glamorous
It’s my new morning mantra, and somehow, it works.
I like to think that I really do have a say in how my day goes, and in turn, how my life goes. What would make today the best day ever? Accomplishing a goal? Completing a project that you’ve been wanting to complete for some time now? Telling someone how you really feel? Simply enjoying the moment and feeling free?
Try this: sit down with your cup of coffee and make a list of everything that you would like to happen in order for today to be the best day of your life. And, I promise, it will.
Nothing says “do me” like a giant neck zit.
Cinco de Mayo! Finally, a valued condiment gets its own holiday.
Hi Tumblr. I like you better than blogger. So 21st century! So tres chic and user friendly!
Let the pinkness begin.
…the number of times I’ve considered hopping out to Borders and buying Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s book “Stop Whining, Start Living”.
Don’t, sad little vacation brain. Don’t succumb to the self-help section so soon!