She was born a caregiver. She’s so smart and can literally do a thousand things at once, and juggle every one down to the detail in her mind. She went to nursing school to learn a trade that would provide an income for her 4 kids and family, but nursing was really her destiny. She… Continue reading It’s Not Really Work
I brought the roses to her from Memphis on Tuesday. She couldn’t smell them so I rubbed one of the blooms across her cheek so she could feel how silky it was. They are so beautiful in the vase sitting across from her bed. This morning when I awoke to go into the kitchen, I… Continue reading Myrtle Irby, My Grand, The Great
This tiny little bird is going to gather a few more stories here with us before she flies. I’m not sure why that’s surprising. After all, she parented two small boys singly after their father was killed. She put herself through nursing school when women didn’t really take on careers like that. She married again… Continue reading She’s Not Flying Yet
Today I celebrate 25 years sober. In a week, I’ll celebrate 52 years of age. It’s a good marking point for reflecting on a life affair with sobriety. I managed to survive the first 17 years without alcohol by honing my sarcastic and comedic skills. I coped with the shit show of my life by… Continue reading A Life Affair With Sobriety
It’s a word typically used to describe a characteristic of a group of living beings. It’s been used in many different, and quite varied, settings. “Homeless community”. “Church community”. It’s a way that people categorize themselves, identify themselves, and label themselves and others, good and bad. Some communities carry a negative connotation. Some make people… Continue reading Community
Dysfunction in my family of origin went unnoticed by me until I started college. Silence in my childhood home was only interrupted by the most mundane of conversations – “what’s for dinner?”, “Unload the dishwasher before I get home.”, “Get your shoes before you miss the bus.” My mother had a new arts and crafts… Continue reading The Importance Of Picking A Damn Good Baby Daddy
The only one who had a plan and a purpose for me was the Universe.
My destiny was to never be enough.
I entered your journey as a mistake - my life a burden to yours.
Holiday season is here. Break out the turkeys, casseroles, Christmas carols, gifts, and family. We all picture the cozy family gatherings viewed through a frozen, candlelit window pane amidst snow softly falling. We don’t ever imagine the actual train wreck it is for many of us. The reality is, for those among us in recovery, those among us who are LGBT, those of us who are desperately trying to establish our own truths about our identities as adults, that family ends up being a place where we don’t belong. Aunt Edith is going to whisper (loudly) all the latest gossip about cousin Ned’s latest stint in rehab so that everyone within a 50 mile radius can hear it. Another relative is going to ask gay cousin Jim what happened to his last “friend”. Granny is going to get pissed because the rolls are burning and no one can be bothered with helping. And God knows that someone is going to bring up politics.
I light up her dark eyes. I contribute to the worry lines on her weathered forehead, and to the laugh lines near her soft eyes and soft cheeks. I make her proud just because I exist. I made her a grandmother when she was 43 years young. I was born into a family in which I never fit. Most who share my DNA are strangers who have always spoken a different language than me, figuratively. I was an accident, an unplanned pregnancy. My father, her son, did the honorable thing and married my mother. In the way of her life, she turned lemons into lemonade. I am her first grand.