Fine Lines

Disclaimer: This social eReader program I'll be working with over the next few months is launching this weekend, and they asked me to write about the launch. Instead, I decided to write something niceish about my mom. However, they're having a Mother's Day sale with 50% off all ebooks so if you didn't get your mom/baby momma a gift, A) you suck and B) you can get her a nice, inexpensive book through their social eReader here

When I became a mother 14 years ago, I stopped having the black and red film-grained Robert Rodriguez style dream about murdering my own mother. I stopped dreaming about getting caught in a mudslide engulfing the home I lived in with both of my parents until I was six once I stood in the field where that house once stood

Time gave me the ability to dream my way through most of the after-shocks of our life together. Twenty Mother's Days later, I'm almost not angry anymore. Twenty Mother's Days later, I can think about her and not feel hate or confusion or sadness, and thanks to the wonder of blogging, I can look back just four short years and see how far I have come with this.

Twenty Mother's Days later, I can remember things about her that were beautiful.  

I remember the sweetly salted heady scent of the sides of her breast, the space between where her nightgown ended and her flesh began, where I would tuck myself into her soft, ivory rolls and listen to her read us stories, her voice so beautiful the words on the pages rolled off her lips like a song. 

My mother didn't let us read children's books - she said they insulted our intelligence. She also thought a whole lot of them were demonic and/or homosexual, which in her tragically broken mind were equally dangerous threats. Instead we read the Bible, which isn't the least bit traumatic to children oh no, and - here's the one thing that woman did so very right - she read us her books. 

She would read to us whenever she was sane enough to. Twenty years ago, I couldn't have remembered this. I think I only do now because I still read her books. 

If she'd read me a Golden Books Grover story, I would have long ago forgotten this. Instead, she read me The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and The History of Physics, over and over again until I could read those books myself, alone in my room, from memory. For her, it was just the choice to read us clever, intellectual things, but for me, it was begin gifted the one perfect, unbroken piece of her to keep forever, untarnished and alive on the pages of those books. 

There's a fine line between genius and insanity; my mother is living proof of that. 

Because of her genius, I've always read my kids my favorite books, from the time they were babes in arms: Alice in Wonderland, The Phantom Tollbooth, World War Z, and of course, The Hitchhiker's Guide. Because of her insanity, I got to discover Shel Silverstein with my kids, and Robert Munsch and Maurice Sendack and everything in between. So that worked out okay.

My kids have never, and will never, meet my mother. I will never see her again, so long as we both shall live. The only way I can ever give them a piece of her is to share this gift she gave me with them, and so when we can, we snuggle up on the couch, me just soft and round enough for them to sink into, them still just small enough to fit under the fold of my arm, and we read together. 

And somehow, oddly, she's there with us. And I'm okay with that. 

It's Not a Black and White World

I'm not one to make a huge fuss about mother's day, for a few reasons, the biggest one being that I am not the mother of the person who'd ultimately have to go all out to make the magic happen.  I usually just cook breakfast crepes and then open my presents that the kids made me in class.  And anything else that might happen to show up.

Mother's Day, 2008.  Yum.

2008; that was a nice year.  *ahem*  And then The Donor goes to work in the afternoon and the kids and I watch some wholy inappropriate movie before bed. 

It works for us.

I could tell you all about how the actual mother of the guy who'd ultimately have to go all out to make the magic happen was with us for Mother's Day, and that same guy had to go into work at 10 in the morning.  And that she had to board a cruise ship at one to get on her way to Alaska for the summer, so all my plans got delayed.  And how it turned out that only her bags had to be checked by one and we had until three together. And how my head almost exploded.

But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that because of this, we had time for a lunch by the fountains and some serious discussions in past and future tense.

Peas and Cues
Present, Past and Future Tenses

I could tell you how everyone got sick and tired of me hiding behind my camera preserving the moment in pictures and right as this one turned to tell me to knock it off in exactly those words, right in the middle of my goddamn picture, I realized that there was a clean and easy way out of this whole Motherfucker's Day debacle. And then I read the sign.

Throw mama from the rail

And I could tell you how I let her live and as luck would have it, we managed to survive just long enough for everyone to still be completely die-ablely adorable for one last fucking picture that I was taking dammit and you'd better smile, so help me god.

The Fam

Four out of five isn't half bad.  But, of course, I'd need to point out that the camera I was hiding behind all day was shiny and new and started in a D and ended in an SLR and was almost more fun than the can of cool whip from the year before.  Almost.


And I suppose I could tell you that the suddenly less cute than before video store guy still charged me $34 for my overdue movies even though it was Mother's Day and that I decided to plant flowers rather than go to the grocery store for dinner stuff to make it all better.  And then I could tell you that The Donor and I got into our Annual Fight over the fact that he'd actually wanted to cook me dinner when he came home from work and couldn't because I was covered in mud and worms and fertilizer and our fridge was covered in cobwebs and tumbleweeds.

But then I'd have to add that he ended up taking all of us out to dinner at 7pm on a school night and we had a really good time and I had a really good margarita. 

Until 3of3 decided throw her face at the cobblestone sidewalk, and oh how she succeeded.

And I could tell you that the night ended with her screaming herself to sleep and the boys fighting until they passed out and The Donor crashing out on the couch, but the truth is that he woke up and gave me something in addition to the camera that had come this week, something that had just been cut that day.


And also something that had been cut way back in the year we'd first met.


Which is disgustingly romantic and made me a very happy momma, indeed.  Mission accomplished.

And crawling, on the planet's face, some insects, called the human race. Lost in time, and lost in space...

I had this whole Father's Day thing written. I was going to title it Mother Fuckers, in the most literal sense of course, and it had an accompanying soundtrack. It. Was. Hysterical. And then, what should pop into my reader but NukeDad's tear-jerking, touching, beautiful eulogy to his father. Seriously, if you don't read Nuclear Warhead Family, just stop reading this right now and go. It's people like him that make me thank sweet little baby Jesus every day for the internetowebosphere. Go. I'll wait.... Back? Okay. Rather than write my standard thesis-style comment in his box, I thought I'd just go delete some crappy old post no one will ever read in my archives, keeping me on track for the big 1K, and tell you a little story about dads.
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