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Browsing Tag: love

No Matter What

All of our biggest conversations happen in the car. We were on our way to gymnastics, deep into a Depeche Mode song, when Quinlan asked me to revisit a story I’d once mentioned about a boyfriend I’d had when I was younger. “Mom? Did he throw you into the lake?” It took me a moment before I realized what she was talking about, then immediately swore to always downplay any single story I told her again from there on out. “No, no, honey. That boy never THREW me into a lake. We were in a canoe on a lake, and he was teasing me by rocking the boat over the deep water.” “And that’s why he didn’t become your boyfriend anymore?” “Well, not because of just that. But I was upset because he knew I was scared. But there were more moments after that when…” I couldn’t think of a way to explain it. “He wasn’t mean. I just started to feel bad about myself when I was around him. Like, sad.” She seemed to understand what I was saying. “So I knew it was time for him to not be my boyfriend…

With the Pumpkin, Of Course

My mom skipped a lunch with her girlfriends today to watch Cian in his 10-minute long Halloween parade. She then, despite my not-so-forceful protests, whisked him away so that I could go home and focus on writing (more on that later–let’s just say that this writer mama is working hard). I admit that I got a little teary. It could be lack of sleep. It could be from being overwhelmed. It could be that crying a little is my usual reaction to someone showing me kindness. But as we were switching cars outside of my son’s school, she looked at me: “Do you want to cook with a pumpkin?” I squinted at her. “Huh?’ And she handed me a pumpkin. It was this huge thing meant for cooking, grown by a friend of hers, and my Mom had happily taken it from her to pass along to me. If you don’t know how much I love a pumpkin, there you go. I may have hugged it. And then, as if my day weren’t already made (the little things), she slipped me a bottle…

Eight Years

Last Saturday, the 16th, marked eight years since my dad died, and as is now typical each spring, April always makes me feel a bit…strangled. I can’t see the blossoms open on the pear trees in this valley where we live without thinking of walking out of the hospital that day, after a week of watching and waiting and crying and waiting some more, to see that spring had happened while we were in the otherworld of the ICU. As most of you already know, it was almost exactly a year later that David’s dad died after another battle with disease, after a car accident. April? Not the best memories lately. I’d wanted to go to Arlington with my mom to visit my dad’s grave this year. But life, or really, a kids’ soccer game, and the dog, and all the other tiny details of a Saturday in the suburbs got in the way, and we ended up walking around the grotto of Mt. St. Mary’s University instead, quietly talking our way along the mountainside, stepping in between shadows and sunshine as we slowly moved under the…