MaMoMeMo
May is motherhood memoir month

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In-laws, Steps, & Halfs

We need some new terms for family relationships… Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash I accidentally referred to my half-brother as my step-brother in a post, and he was quick to text me about it. I was writing about my stepfather who begat my half-brother, so you might understand the confusion. The slip-up highlights the problem with these terms– these are my real family. My “step”-father was a step up from my real, or biological, father; my “half-brother” is more whole to me than my real, DNA-equal brothers. And I once had a son-in-law that felt every bit like a soul son. Putting an X in front of that term didn’t cross out any of my familial feelings when he and our daughter divorced. I have a sister-in-law who is more of a sister to me, and more of an aunt to my daughter than my real sister, and that’s…

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…

Impostor Mom

Do you ever feel like you’re making it up as you go? On a good day, I like to think I’m throwing myself out in front, then seeing if I can catch up. But sometimes I just end up stressed. Maybe I’m throwing myself in too many directions. Things look ok on paper–the to do list–but so many items we do as parents, and just plain people, never actually show up on the list. And then there are all those distractions, like putting away stuff so we can actually get to the stuff that really needs doing. So when something fun comes up, I often feel as though I should just say No. Get the work done, especially if there is a deadline. And yet… we all need breaks. So I went to mountain bike camp. For the past 5 years I’ve worked for REI, the outdoor co-op. But, can…

May Day- another birthday

Two years ago today I wrote: My youngest turned 9 today. Halfway to 18… all she wanted for her birthday was a kitten. We have not had good luck with cats for this little girl who loves cats more than anything in the whole world, and she loves a lot of things, mostly animals. She was offered the chance to go back to Wizarding World in Orlando (since we’d bought year long passes last year when we went). “That would be #2 on my list,” she said. No.1 was visiting a vet. Could she see what a vet does and just hang out with him or her for the day? My friend arranged a trip to a llama farm where there are new baby llamas. That will have to do for now. And a kitten. I drove 2 1/2 hours each way to get this kitten. I would do almost…

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