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Category: Family Frets

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Familial Fantasies

Familial Fantasies

I do not have the children I expected. They’re like me in ways I wish they weren’t. They express traits of their father’s that are not amongst my favorites. But, on some days I can see the best of myself and my spouse shimmer within them. I treasure those days. Even then, when I am hopeful and happy (relatively), I worry and cannot sideline the stereotypical Westside mother I embody. I push for more. Always and forever more. I am the Sisyphus of parenthood, my children the recalcitrant rock that will not heed my guidance up Opportunity Hill. My children are late bloomers. Some days I have to dig deep to believe that they will bloom at all; those days… READ MORE

Legacy Upended

Legacy Upended

“It’s been 30 years, “he said turning the page in his calendar.  “30 years …” his voice trails off into the purgatory of what might’ve been. Parents are not meant to survive their children. And yet there are many who exist in this backward world, having outlived those who should be our legacy. Life’s natural rhythm is flipped for us – because of … who cares what took them. They’re gone we have outlived those who should have laid us to rest. Biological, step, adoptive or other, our children are meant to mourn us. It’s wrong for us to weep on their graves. “I thought that I might just crawl into her tiny grave with her,” he shared when he told… READ MORE

Remembrance

Remembrance

How is a life remembered? Which stories seal our fate? I forget more stories than I care to admit. The more time that passes, the more stories accumulate, making more for me to forget. Which shall I memorialize? Which should I tell you? Do I recall the ones where I am the hero who saves the day? The half-truths that will win me accolades, praise I’ll wish I deserved? Or, do I go with the truth? Dare I share the flawed, imperfect actions behind my best of intentions? Do I let the one about that night slip? The fragrant, spring night when you crawled off the bed and fell on your head? Or the one where I may have broken… READ MORE

COVID Tree: Part 2 The Tree

COVID Tree: Part 2 The Tree

No one has talked tree since Turkey Day. But the calendar has turned to December so a tree we must buy. I pine for the smell of pine. I miss the imperfect bit of nature, imperfectly grown and decorate that lights up a corner of our family room – and our family. “Where is the best place to buy a Christmas Tree?” I type into Google. I order a six-foot tree that will be picked out by strangers and delivered on Monday. Plastic is not our future – using plastic to procure pine, that’s the answer. This year, I’ve got it – I smile as the sun sets – wait, the sun is setting…. it’s time to light the menorah.… READ MORE

COVID Tree: Part 1 Thanksgiving

COVID Tree: Part  1 Thanksgiving

COVID coping mechanisms are copious chez moi. Compulsive cleaning is among the more productive of our pandemic proclivities – one that has revealed actual floor space in our basement. But it is space that reopens an old wound. “Do not even think of asking me to put that monstrosity together,” my husband admonishes, pointing his finger at six large, lumpy burgundy bags strewn across the floor. Sometimes we look for plastic perfection to lighten up the long dark days of winter. Sometimes this is a mistake. A mistake in six plastic parts. Plus, a base upon which the contents of said six bags are assembled. Let me explain. Back in 2018 we were still recovering from  a particularly harrowing trip… READ MORE

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