Snapshot

I forget sometimes that other people read what I write on this blog. Or maybe I underestimate the impact of my words.

My cousin lives in Minneapolis. We’re not particularly close, although we care about each other. We talk a few times a year. I talk to his mother, my aunt, more often and she keeps us up-to-date on each other.

He texted my husband recently to find out if I was okay. He and my aunt saw my last blog post about being depressed and isolated (see it here) and were worried about me.

I called him back the next day and assured him I was okay, though still somewhat depressed. I think I sounded kind of perky. I tried to. Was that dishonest? I don’t think so. I am okay and also depressed.

Or maybe my therapist is right–I’m grieving. My brother died July 12, 2013. Since he died two years ago, I’ve had one medical issue after another, barely healing from one surgery before needing the next. I told my therapist it feels like emotional PTSD. My friend, Kim, a grief counselor, tells me the symptoms of grief are the same as depression symptoms. Oh. How do I know the difference? Does it matter?

My grief is bigger than my brother dying. I miss having a body that I don’t have to think about. I miss being able to chase after my grandchildren. Adaline asked me to jump with her the other day. I told her I couldn’t really jump. “Oh, you can’t do that anymore, Amma?” she said. I wanted to cry. I was angry because I had to add jumping to my list of things I can’t do. I felt old.

I started this blog when I had one grandchild, Adaline. I wanted her to know me as a person with feelings and fears and hopes and problems. Now I have 2 more grandchildren–Maggie and Atticus. And I still write so they will have a way to know me when I’m not around anymore. I’m getting to know me better, too.

I’m sorry that I worried my aunt and my cousin. I write these posts as the spirit moves me and they reflect the moment that I’m in. Two hours after I finish, I might be far beyond those particular concerns and feelings. But my written words stay in that moment.

Each blog post is just a snapshot, a captured moment in my life.

I think I should write more on days I feel good!

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Published in: on July 9, 2015 at 3:56 pm  Comments (9)  
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Closet Radical

My first date with my husband was a protest march in 1972.  I was against the war in Vietnam, but I mostly remember sitting on his lap in the back seat of Gary Ulicny’s VW bug.

When my girls were little, I was a group leader in La Leche League, a breastfeeding support group.  We advocated for what is now called “attachment parenting” and wondered whether stay-at-home moms could be feminists.  We felt pretty radical at the time, with our Snuglis and our homemade baby food.

In 1995, I was part of the “Mothers’ Bar Brigade”, sponsored by the local AIDS Service Agency.  We took baskets of condoms in multi-colored wrappers into the bars of Greensboro the night before Mother’s Day. We went to gay bars and we went to another bar that had so many strobe lights I went temporarily blind. It was way past my bedtime.

At one bar,  I handed one of my colorful condoms to my daughter’s friend and said, “Your mother would want you to use this.”  I’m sure I ruined his evening.  The next morning, Mother’s Day, a reporter who had followed us around for a while quoted me in the newspaper.  Monday, I think my kids bragged about their cool mom.

I’m reading a book called Mothers of Intention: How Women and Social Media Are Revolutionizing Politics in America (why do books have such long titles these days?).  In 2010, more than 2000 people, mostly women, attended a BlogHer convention in NYC.  That is too many women to ignore.  The more I learn about the world of blogging—“The Blogosphere”—the more I feel kind of radical again.  I want to go to a BlogHer convention.

I started this blog so my grandchildren would know me.  Of course I hope to influence their values and beliefs.  And maybe make them laugh.

I hope they’re proud of me.  And I hope they’re a bit radical, too.

Published in: on September 30, 2011 at 3:24 pm  Comments (8)  
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