I said I wanted to go. Even though I didn't really want to go. But I felt like I was supposed to want to go. Or something. So we went. I drove my mom back to the cemetary, back past the funeral staging area where we waited in our cars for what felt like forever, in the cold and the rain. Where I had stared out the window and told Jason I wanted to be cremated, then stared at my feet and silently regretted my choice of footwear. The weather was beautiful this year, so we parked farther away, where the car wouldn't possibly get in the way of any other funeral. We started walking down the grassy aisles and I silently regretted my choice of stroller. I should have brought the sturdier one, not the cheap car seat stroller frame that got stuck on every lump and divot in the ground. The ground that was full of bodies. My mom got turned around and confused about the rows. The rows and rows of identical markers, so we marched up one and then had to turn around and the stroller got caught on a bit of raised earth around the... Read more →

I Want To Belieeeeeeeeve

I have no idea how we got on the subject of Bloody Mary -- the ghosty sleepover dare, not the drink -- but somehow, we did. A little vodka may have been involved, but I am definitely sure that tomato juice and celery were not. Jason and I both grew up in very, very religious households, and because of this, had both achieved adulthood without ever -- EVER -- attempting the Bloody Mary game. We believed that just by THINKING about Satan or evil things, one was technically inviting demonic influence, or even full-on possession. That shit was real, man, in an incredibly literal sense, and the idea of actively baiting a ghost/demon/evil spirit like that was a genuinely terrifying prospect that neither of us would ever mess with. I have a vague memory of standing in a darkened bathroom after first hearing the story from my friends...and THINKING about maybe giving it a try, and the very second the idea popped into my head, a car drove down the street and a glimmer of the headlights flashed in the mirror and I freaked out and ran back to my room, hid under the covers and prayed for forgiveness and... Read more →

Mommy, Read Me A Story About Death & Destruction

We're headed back to Pennsylvania AGAIN this weekend, travel exhaustion and desperate homebody desires to sit on the couch be damned. Grandma's memorial service in on Sunday. We're taking the boys, since it's really not a "funeral" -- no viewing or casket or urn, just a family-and-friends gathering at her nursing home. My mother-in-law thinks their presence will be a welcome distraction for everybody, especially Grandma's remaining friends, who do always adore visiting grandchildren, no matter who they "belong" to. (Of course, my mother-in-law also thought it was totally appropriate to take the boys to visit Grandma last week, when we were in New York, and she was officially on her deathbed -- a decision that, after Jason saw Grandma on Saturday, he was little upset about. Yes, it's a natural part of life and all but HE was so rattled and shaken by how sick and already dead she looked, and would have preferred our two- and five-year-old children being spared that particular sight. Or at the very least, being consulted ahead of time would have been nice.) (Free babysitting! No such thing. There's always a price tag. Like say, your babysitters jumping the gun on the whole death... Read more →

Angel On Your Shoulder

Last night things returned to their usual clusterfuck: Ezra woke up at 2:30, and less than an hour later Noah appeared at my bedside in near tears over a dream about plane, Grandma and Ceiba -- something so vivid, apparently, that he still runs to my side for a reassuring hug every time a plane flies overhead. We attempted to return the boys to their respective beds around 4:30, which lasted for about an hour for Noah ("My tummy hurrrrrts. And the plane! The plaaaane!") and about five minutes for Ezra. I grumpily and blindly reswaddled Ezra's arms in total darkness and tried to put him in his swing (look, the 30-Day Shred is making my muscles sore enough -- I am now officially cherishing every inch of my personal space at night), but that didn't work either. Defeated, I brought him back to bed, carefully flipped down the loose sheets and blankets, curled around him protectively with my back to Jason and Noah, and fell sound asleep. At some point I felt a hand on my shoulder. It squeezed and shook me a little, the way Jason does when he's trying to wake me up or make sure that... Read more →


So first of all, this is the second time I've written this entry, since I somehow managed to close my browser AS I SCROLLED THE MOUSE UP TO THE PUBLISH BUTTON, so please attribute any anger to that, and not the subject matter. The first version contained a shocking amount of non-bitterness, and really demonstrated my growth as a person, and while we're at it, let's just say it was the greatest thing ever written in the history of the English language, and this version is going to suck because GAR BLAM ANGRY. Second of all: thank you. Thank you to everybody who commented on my last entry. Your responses were all so reasoned and diverse and thoughtful, and while it did get a little overwhelming at times, overall they made for excellent reading yesterday while I LAID AROUND IN BED WITH A GROSSLY SWOLLEN MOUTH FROM HAVING MULTIPLE CAVITIES DRILLED AND ALSO THEY SOOTHED THE PAIN IN MY HEART FROM THE DENTAL BILL I PAID. A DENTAL BILL THAT INCLUDED A COMMA. Oy. But that's a different entry o' bitching. Today's entry is about y'all, and how much I appreciate the time you took to write about something so... Read more →

Crisis of Faith & Salsa

We went to Chipotle for lunch on Sunday. Jason stood in line while I snagged an empty table. As I tried to navigate Noah and a high chair across the crowded restaurant, hoping to not whack anybody in the ankles, I felt the weight of the high chair vanish. A young man wordlessly took it from me and carried it to my table, while I thanked him repeatedly, surprised at the unexpected help -- and also at how surprised I was about the unexpected help. He sat down at his own table, bowed his head and prayed silently over his burrito. I remember how my family used to pray over meals in restaurants. I remember not caring for a lot of years, and then I remember caring so very much. I remember my face flushing with embarassment as my parents prayed aloud over burgers and fries at Friendly's, while our waitress hovered nearby, unsure whether placing the ketchup bottle on the table would disturb our communion with the Lord Father in Heaven. A few minutes later a family asked the man if they could join him at his oversized table since there weren't any other seats. They were obviously eating... Read more →