“There are two things children should get from their parents: roots and wings.” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
They don’t let me write publicly about them anymore. Not by name, anyway.
They captain their own ship now. Except, of course, when they’re steering toward rocky cliffs or when the sea is too stormy, then I get the helm. Or maybe they are the stormy sea, and I’m the boat. Or vice versa. Or maybe I’m a particularly powerful head wind, slowing their course, and try as they might they can’t steer out of it.
Or maybe I don’t yet know what metaphor to use for this time in our lives – a time when our intertangled selves, which has been one whole thing for so long, are disentangling into three separate beings. (But whatever the metaphor is, it involves being yelled at for “all my rules” in the same thirty minute period that I have to remind them – yet again – not to leave trash, dirty socks, and a pile of papers strewn over the living room floor.)
All of which is to say: they’re teenagers now. Continue reading
Inspired by NaNoWriMo, I’ve committed to finishing my memoir. Finally. After almost a decade of cogitation, percolation, and procrastination. Voice building. Muscle building. Gut building. I’ve decided to call it Hell is for Children. Because, this. I’ll have a first draft done by the end of the month and a draft ready for an agent by the end of the year.
But, my god.
The monsters are visiting me in my sleep. I’m 3 months alcohol-free, but after a long day of writing, I’ve been dreaming that I ingest opiods and red wine. I hate it, in my dreams, but I can’t get enough. I wake up in the morning with the residue of guilt and defeat on me. I get it though. I get why I drank. I get why my brain seeks it, even in my sobriety. Lidia Yuknavitch said at the Ojai retreat that “your wound is your superpower.” And if my wound is PTSD (and it is), then my superpower is this outpouring of guts and honesty in the form of structured words on a page. My voice. My muscles. Continue reading
Unchaste Readers: Women Reading their Minds is a spoken word series that creates and recreates itself bimonthly on the 3rd Tuesday in Portland, Oregon.The Unchaste Readers are women aged 21 to 71 who speak of finding and losing all of the things that women find and lose. They hold our hands as they tell hard stories that they’ve survived or are still surviving. They make us laugh at them and at ourselves in the kindest, most creative ways.
The Interviews of Unchaste Women is an interview series of former readers, which is hosted on the Unchaste blog. I was fortunate to have read my mind for an Unchaste show in 2013 and so was asked to participate in the interview series. Here’s what I had to say: Continue reading