The other night we went to Gigi’s Playhouse. It was teen night – young people with Down syndrome, 17 years old and up. They were getting together to hang out. We’ve done this before, met with groups, hoping for connections, hoping for more than a simulation of a night out with friends, hoping for friendship.
i broke ella’s tea cup. she found a set at an estate sale that was pretty perfect and upon carrying it in from the yard, it slipped from my hand. way to go, mom. its tough not to venerate your mother. to gloss over the past and the short comings and hope your own children
joshua and i celebrated 19 years of marriage a couple of weeks ago. the first four years of it there were no children. no mazzy. no abe. no ella. i remember the counseling and the fighting. i remember how hard it was to suddenly be married in a new city where i knew no one.
i smell her hair. strawberry shortcake. thin arms and legs with a head too large for any human body. i inhale and wish for the scented air i remember from the doll of my youth. i would have taped that doll to my face like i once tried to tape mazzy’s pacifier to her head
don’t worry, mom. she says it enough lately that i’m starting to wonder that perhaps i’m more anxious than i know. mazzy turned 14 last week. it’s been less like a blink and more like a night of sleep. time passes unaware, but it happened. you were just out of time in a way. mazzy
the grocery store is its own particular type of torture. i must be thankful for the resources to be there, the choices, the strength in my legs to walk the aisles, to push the cart. i know. i must be. but when you’ve done something a few hundred times it loses that certain something and
this thing keeps happening as my 13 year old daughter listens to pop music. it takes me by surprise. maybe it’s the scientific algorithms or maybe not. mazzy will play another teen anthem about taking life and love by storm and somewhere a few bars in – i have to stop myself from weeping. mind
a mother can forget her child. it’s true. it’s in the bible. and it’s true in my life. i like to go and have a cup of coffee alone. i’ll read until i forget where i am. i like to get lost in thrift stores and have long conversations with friends i love. i can
it’s late at night when my mind and heart are vulnerable to old words spoken. words that were jumbled together any way you like, but always say the same thing. “i reject you.” “you are unwanted.” “you are unloved.” these stupid words from a person who has no memory of speaking them, they can stick around like
the boy has started a comic book club and i have a tooth in my front pocket. the girl smiles at me. both of her front teeth have gone missing. things go missing sometimes, like whole summers, entire years even. a new friend and i talk about how we’re subject to the seasons – how fall