May is motherhood memoir month


Last Day of 12

It still does not fail to amaze me that I have a 12 year-old, but especially this 12 year-old, this child I was sure I didn’t want. At the time I found out I was pregnant I was 46, applying to grad school, literally filling out applications in the physician’s office, just getting a yearly check-up, but feeling a bit tired. We already had five kids. The oldest daughter was 25, trying to get pregnant. The oldest son was in college. One son was high school age, and another junior high. Our youngest daughter, a surprise when I was almost 40, was a third grader. It was finally my time to go back and get the graduate degree I’d put off for 20 years. Except I was pregnant. Our oldest daughter wanted to have a baby but was having trouble conceiving. She asked us to pray for her. As I…

Where You Begin, Again

Forget the flowers- write about fears, and all else your heart runs from. May is (Motherhood) Memoir Month- You don’t have to be a mother to have a motherhood story- It’s where YOU begin, or began, or begin again. I am always and forever beginning again, a firm believer in new beginnings, but also in finishing what I’ve begun. I’m not as good at that. I’m better at starting over. Right now I’m working on finishing a memoir about my mother- what it means to be a daughter of a manic mind, and how her recent death has changed our relationship. It’s a complicated, conflicted relationship, and writing about it helps me understand it better, helps me understand me better. Meanwhile, the writing feels messy. However, I’ve found some tools to help bring order to the chaos. As I write toward my goal of bringing completion to this work during…

Growing Pains

Mothering is difficult. And then it gets better. Here’s poetic evidence for Mother’s Day: Yesterday I wrote about Daughter #2, the poet. At the Central Oregon Writer’s Guild this last year she read her award winning poem, and then she read this: Growing Pains Thank you for teaching me to fold things I am still not good at it when it comes to cloth but when it comes to feelings I can sort by color, texture, pattern, And put them to bed in the right drawers Sorted and named and placed All because of you And for dusting the blinds in my room I know you hated it (and so did I) but now I am so good at letting in the light growing towards its warmth even when I’m not sure how clean I am myself I am lighter because of you And for letting me ruin your horsehair…