Skip to main content

The sob-fest

My eyes are puffy today. Not because of my recently diagnosed dry-eye -- a condition that I still cannot mention with a straight face -- but because I had a complete sob-fest last night, brought on when I looked at one of the cut-out hands that I put in Sweet Boy's bday thank you cards.

It flashed across my mind that I had not traced and cut out his hand for his 1 or 2yo birthdays. And the tears just burst out of my otherwise overdry eyeballs. Uncontrollably. someone had just died. It was right before bed, too, and Big Daddy was all wtf about it (which I don't fault him for...he tried to console me, but the only words I could eke out were "his...little... hands! Won't...get that...back!" and I know when he saw the cut-out hand in my hand, he thought, uh oh, irrationality alert!), so I ended up sitting in the sunroom in the dark crying until I couldn't breathe anymore.

As I write this, I'm cringing now at the pitifulness of the scene. So pitiful that even the cats kept their distance!

I hadn't had a good cry in months, so maybe i just needed the release. But really, am I going to be a crying mess all throughout his life? Because the kid is going to keep growing up! Whether I like it or not. And I most likely will not be able to document every small change, no matter how many photos or journal entries I write. And I will most likely always feel guilty that I rush through every day without truly paying attention to the details, and I will most likely always regret that I yell at him so often, and I will most likely always feel inadequate as a parent. So get a grip, woman!

This is another reminder that I become more like my mother every friggin day. A realization that might have contributed to the sob-fest, really. I can handle inheriting personality traits, because you have some control over that, right? I mean, I can choose whether or not I want to say things like "Do you want me to give you something to cry about?" or whether I grit my teeth when I discipline my child. But I can't control the medical conditions or physiological breakdowns that I am bound to inherit.

Around this time every year I get all macabre and melancholy about the dying-young thing. And obviously with every year that passes, I feel it more distinctly and dwell on it a little more. Because 47 is way closer than it used to be! Apparently my eye doctor's comments about medical ailments being hereditary hit a nerve deeper than I'd realized. Don't far as I know, there is no direct medical connection between dry-eye and cancer, just in case you're wondering. Evidently, though, it's the leap that my neurotic subconscious made.



  1. T-
    Yes you look like your Mom, and yes you may say things that your Mom would have said, but you are not your mom! There is one very big difference between her and you, you have chosen to be much more healthy than she was- and that my friend will combat the genetic link that you have! (God I hope so, because if not I am dead at 49!)

    Also, you have to live life and not just record it. So, give yourself a break and remember it is ok not to take every second in memory- because if you did it would be filled with stinky diapers and throw up all ove ryour friends! (Wait that is a memory! :-)

    We love you, and remember relax . . . the perceived "bad" stuff that you think you are doing are also helping to create that wonderfully balanced little boy!

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Awww, hugs to you, too! If I end up having to see someone, I'm sending the bill to you and Christy!

    But I agree with Christy, the memories are there, even if we can't see them on command. And who says a cut out of tiny hands is the memory that means, or will mean the most? Perhaps for you, it will be something completely different, something you already have, and can recall. You show him you love him on a daily basis, he shows you back, and really, what more can you ask for? I mean, we're all messed up, so it's time to reject the idea of perfection. Maybe if we did, we'd be closer to it.

  4. Thinking so much about time and how fleeting it is can be a major downer for me, too. You have the added emotional load of the loss of your mom at a young age (for both of you) so I can see how things like this could push you over the edge.

    Regardless of how many items go into Hayden's memory box, you're sure to have thousands of great memories of him stored within your own head for a lifetime. And you'll be able to tell him all sorts of stories about them so he can "remember" them, too.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Grace happens

Today Honey's roommate in room 364 at Maine Medical Center was discharged. Some other day I'll tell you about why Honey is in the hospital again, but this story is about the roommate because it's way more interesting. Let's call him Elton, because all I really know about him is he plays guitar in an Elton John tribute band and he's originally from the very northern part of England, bordering Scotland. (Or as Honey described it, "that place in England where the Roman Empire decided, nope, those Celts are crazy, and put up a wall.")

Elton was in room 364 before Honey arrived, and what struck me immediately, besides his delightful accent and soothing Liam-Neeson-esque voice, was his gentle, good-natured manner. He was going through heck from a botched surgery and compartment syndrome - pain and gore and fear of losing the use of his dominant hand - yet he spoke kindly and softly to every person who came into his room. Every time a nurse walked in, Elton gree…

Math lessons

I was really great at school as a kid...but I'm really lousy at school as a parent. And I was reminded once again of this while sitting at my son's conference yesterday.

Seventh grade has been hard on all of us. Beyond the obvious physical changes -- Happy has grown at least 5" since this summer and now looks me in the eye (yeah, remember I'm super tall!), his voice is weird, he can't get out of his own way -- we're all trying to navigate his ever-changing need for independence. His teachers want him to take more responsibility for his learning, which in theory sounds like a great plan for all kids at this age; they have to not only learn how to learn but also learn how to advocate for their learning.

In reality, though, when you're the world's most laid-back 12-almost-13-year-old who really only wants to listen to music, play drums, video games, and action figures, taking responsibility and advocating for your learning is not highest priority. In fact…

Happy curls?

I dreaded the passing of the peace each Sunday when I was a little girl. Every week the old church ladies would comment about my hair...
    "Shirley Temple curls!" they cooed; I didn't know who Shirley Temple was.
    "So soft!" they petted; I didn't want their wrinkly, gnarled fingers on my head.
    "I pay a lot of money to have hair like yours!" they exclaimed; I couldn't figure out why anyone would pay money for frizzy, fluffy, brillo-pad hair.

I hated my curls. I felt embarrassed by my hair -- it was short, kinky, cut badly -- quite different from the long straight hair my friends all wore at the time in my life when I just wanted to fit in. Oh, how I wanted a ponytail! Or a braid my hair on a Sunday morning with ribbons hanging down, that was a dream.

Today during the passing of the peace, I found myself next to one of the older ladies in our church. Every week I marvel at her elegance, the way the dresses, the slow and grace…