Ever since my father passed away in April, I’ve been talking to my mother a lot more. We haven’t had the best relationship, my mother and I. It’s long and complicated. Mostly, she’s wanted to be close to me, although she doesn’t actually like me as a person (and I don’t much like her). » Read more
I woke up cheerful this morning.
Normally, this wouldn’t be big news. In general, I have a very positive disposition.
I do get grumpy. I do get sad. Things can and do annoy me.
Part of being a resilient person involves acknowledging reality. And anyone who has any sort of meaningful, » Read more
“If you want people to like you,” my mother said. “Be quiet and smile.”
“People love a mystery,” she advised. “And when they don’t know who you are, they fill in the gaps with good stuff.”
That was her advice to me. And for her, it certainly worked. She was a cheerleader in high school. » Read more
I’m sitting in a pew, attending mass at the church I attended growing up.
It’s been 7 years since I went to a service here, on another visit to my hometown, but surprisingly little has changed since then.
Actually, surprisingly little has changed from 30 years ago, when I was a small child doing my best to remain quiet and tolerate the unending boredom, » Read more
I look at my phone. Sigh involuntarily. Because it’s one of those series of texts.
I miss you, she says. Everyone else bores me.
She proceeds to insult or tear down every other person in her life, pointing out what she perceives to be their flaws. » Read more
Sometimes people are surprised to learn that I grew up in a rural area in a highly religious family with very traditional conservative ideas of what gender roles should be.
But for me, it’s always there somewhere in my psyche.
Even as I grew up, moved away, and found a social group with different ideas about sex, » Read more
Lately, my life has shifted quite dramatically. Since I’m getting ready to sell my house (as part of a cross country move), I’m basically living out of a single suitcase. I only use the microwave to cook, never the stove or oven, so I won’t have a big mess to clean up in the kitchen. » Read more
It was something I was told a thousand times growing up. If you’re going to go out, leave a note.
By my mother when I was staying at my parents’ house. But not just her and not just there. Everywhere. At all the other places I stayed. Friends’ houses. With other relatives. » Read more
Jealousy is in some measure just and reasonable, since it merely aims at keeping something that belongs to us or we think belongs to us, whereas envy is a frenzy that cannot bear anything that belongs to others.
-Francois de La Rochefoucauld
I was alone a lot when I was growing up. » Read more
“You’ll be fine,” my dad said, as we waited in line for the roller coaster. “It’s not so bad.”
But the old man was tricking me.
My first clue was the screams that we heard as we waited in the enclosure. “They’re just being dramatic,” Dad had reassured me. “Some people ride these things just to scream.” » Read more