Thursday, March 4, 2021
No menu items!
More
    This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclaimer for more info.
    This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclaimer for more info.

    Latest Posts

    GXRL Talks Sex with Lavinia CEO Katie Enright

    An orgasm is so beneficial for our mind, body, and soul. It changes the relationship we have with ourselves and our partners. It creates confidence, both in the bedroom but also in everyday life. That's why at Lavinia, our motto is "Live Life to the Climax." We hope this product will encourage everyone to have a better, more climactic life.

    Child Custody in the Time of Pandemia

    I am still raw from the March 13th sting when we, terrified by a novel virus, canceled classes at the high school where I teach -- where my youngest attends -- and floored it home without a backward glance, locked ourselves up tightly, and refused to open for friend and stranger both. I forced smiles for all the kids in my care, "What an adventure!" it said. We got this. I got this.

    Simply Insignificant

    Lately, I have been feeling a bit small. There are so many BIG concerns in the world right now that my life feels ... well ... unimportant.

    Maintaining is the New Thriving

    Don’t misunderstand me: Sierra’s death is in here, waiting, like lava bubbling deep inside a sleeping volcano. It will have its day, as such losses do, whether I want it or not.

    On predictions of death

    My father always smelled like Purell. This was before the pandemic, before people lined around blocks at Costco to fill their baskets with hand sanitizer and toilet paper. He never had toilet paper, though, he always took mine. This was before when being unwell seemed to belong solely to him. 

    His was an early form of contract tracing. 

    “You made me sick.” He would accuse me, always reclined in his bed. The sofa was reserved for holding court, friends visiting his perpetual sickbed. His belly was a giant mound atop which he interlaced his fingers. “I hope I don’t get bronchitis again, Jesus.” And he did get bronchitis again and again, for which he blamed me, or whoever he had figured out gave him his most recent sickness. To his credit, he was usually right. But I didn’t give him the sores on his face and arms from obsessive scratching. I didn’t give him arthritis, probably.

    I wouldn’t say he was immunocompromised, like someone with lupus or cancer. We’ve learned a lot more about those things since the coronavirus. Rather, I think his body had given up the fight for wellness out of sheer expectation. 

    “I’m going to die soon,” he would threaten. “I’m not going to make it past fifty.” But he did, and sixty too. And while as a child I would protest, terrified that my daddy would die and leave me all alone, as I grew older the protestations softened and quieted and turned into a shrug. You can only fear a warning for so many years until you become tired of being afraid. 

    I ask my husband for a cigarette, and he pauses for a long time and then says “But where will you ash it?” As though he needs to know the outcome of my choice so he can decide whether I get to have what I want. Like my father, he sometimes treats me like a child. When you are small, everything is a gift that you are expected to be grateful for. For my father, this gift was in the form of his stories, which he would tell for hours without stopping, and in the end, he expected gratitude. I rail against even a whiff of it now, and when I get the cigarette from my husband I ash it on my stomach sullenly, reclined in bed, just like my father did for all those years. 

    I am like him. When I am angry, my eyes flash contemptuously and I say nothing. I feel wrath and hatefulness and plan cruelty. It passes. I’m glad that is mostly all.

    When you are a child and you are clever, people clap their hands and praise you and ask for more. But as you grow, it becomes something you have to hide, otherwise you are prideful, or vain. I still want that praise. I am still a child by my own making, and want to be taken care of. “You are selfish.” I can hear him hiss. “I did everything for you.” 

    But I think about the times he was sick, so skinny his pants would fall down and he would hobble around with one hand holding them up and then hide in his bedroom for days at a time. I think about visiting him in the ICU, his face ashen and sleeping like a small child himself after his gallbladder went septic and his liver failed. I remember all the times I didn’t go play because he couldn’t keep up, so I sat with him instead and we fed the ducks, watching them waddle up to us and fill their mouths with bread from a bag I clutched in my tiny hand. 

    He didn’t die and hasn’t still. Now, his name makes my mouth turn dry, and my lips into a tight line. “Was it really that bad?” people ask. But it is a question because they are uncomfortable, and don’t know what else to say. A question for the sake of it. 

    “Yes,” I say. “but he did everything for me.”

    NP Saunders
    NP is a writer based out of Toronto, Ontario, and is a proud mother of two children. She received a BA in Sociology at Concordia University and spent many years working in theatre production. She is presently working in the tech industry and has spoken and written on mental health in the remote workplace.

    1 COMMENT

    4.5 2 votes
    Article Rating
    Subscribe
    Notify of
    guest
    1 Comment
    Oldest
    Newest Most Voted
    Inline Feedbacks
    View all comments
    Stacy Bodus
    1 month ago

    This resonates in me. The honesty makes me see how I’ve pulled punches in my own writing about family. I’m inspired. Thank you.

    P.S. You probably didn’t give him ingrown toenails, either, probably.

    Latest Posts

    GXRL Talks Sex with Lavinia CEO Katie Enright

    An orgasm is so beneficial for our mind, body, and soul. It changes the relationship we have with ourselves and our partners. It creates confidence, both in the bedroom but also in everyday life. That's why at Lavinia, our motto is "Live Life to the Climax." We hope this product will encourage everyone to have a better, more climactic life.

    Child Custody in the Time of Pandemia

    I am still raw from the March 13th sting when we, terrified by a novel virus, canceled classes at the high school where I teach -- where my youngest attends -- and floored it home without a backward glance, locked ourselves up tightly, and refused to open for friend and stranger both. I forced smiles for all the kids in my care, "What an adventure!" it said. We got this. I got this.

    Simply Insignificant

    Lately, I have been feeling a bit small. There are so many BIG concerns in the world right now that my life feels ... well ... unimportant.

    Maintaining is the New Thriving

    Don’t misunderstand me: Sierra’s death is in here, waiting, like lava bubbling deep inside a sleeping volcano. It will have its day, as such losses do, whether I want it or not.
    1
    0
    Hey, Gxrl! We would love your thoughts, please comment.x
    ()
    x