I’m a writer, and I’m asking where do the words come from. And many of you reading this are also writers. When we sit down to create, it can be a slog. And sometimes we ask ourselves: Who truly wants to read what is firing in my brain?
I think the answer is many of us do, maybe all of us do.
Because writing IS the HUMAN EXPERIENCE—–LIVING is where the words come from.
So today, while many of you are separated from your mothers because of COVID19, or deeply missing your mothers because they have left us–I thought I would offer some thoughts that might fire up a tear or two, or might stimulate you to write me back and say YES, I’VE FELT THAT. YES, THAT’S HOW IT WAS FOR ME. Because the excerpts below are all from the stories I have written–the experiences I have had, the emotion that boils over from those experieinces–from living.
SO, I OFFER: JUST A FEW SENTENCES. I won’t take up much of your time, and by the way, HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY, HAPPY WEEK.
- from: SOMEDAY IT WILL BE DECEMBER In the depths of July, Claire began to think about sex. Constantly. In the dense smoke of blue moonlight trailing along her bed, the child within her waxing stronger with kicks so definable she wanted to cry out “hey.” Because at first she had been in complete denial–but now the denial stage was over, she in thrall to the pregnancy…
- from: FACTS OF LIFE Then my fourth-grader looks at me and asks: “Mom, do men always want to hurt people?” And I hold her and say, “No, Cara, no. There are wonderful men in the world. There are men who love their children and want to take care of them and their wives. They go to work every day to take care of their families. That man today was sick in his head…”
- from: FRAGILE When she tucks the two of them in bed that night, they are exuberant. As she goes down the stairs to be with Adam, they call over and over the words, “Love ya, see ya in the morning, good night. Love ya, see ya in the morning, good night”… Tess listens, the words falling on her with their weight of wonder. And welcoming all of it, she holds them, keeps them like a charm her two have hung gently around her neck.
- from PUMPKINS Though she could hear Heather’s chatter in the next room and feel the light and space around her, Rachel was still looking down, still seeing her mother-in-law’s face and remembering what a doctor once told her at a cocktail party. “You wouldn’t believe the number of children women are capable of having. Why even after they’re dead, you can cut open the ovary and there they are–all those seeds.”
- from WHEN DID MY MOTHER DIE (Ruth is on the phone with her mother’s best friend. Both Ruth’s mother and the friend will die within the year, but Ruth is struggling with how to care for her mother.) Tears formed in Ruth’s eyes. She didn’t want Eleanor to leave her. “I want to say things to you. Before. Like thank you for being Mom’s friend, being my friend. Thank you for all the great talks we had and there was so much laughter. And you always liked me. I love you, Eleanor.” The birds were scattering now, climbing up the watery sky. “So bye now, Ruth. Be good, take care of your mother for me,” and the called ended. Ruth turned away, sobbing. But you’re so fortunate to still have her.
The above are all part of my collection A Mother’s Time Capsule ( available on Amazon) Photo credits, more photos on my Pinterest Board, BOOMER HIGHWAY.