Mother’s Day (Early and Late at the Same Time)

Sacrifice – WordPress Daily Prompt

Close to a decade ago I was just old enough to be considered an adult but young enough to not truly understand what being an adult meant. In the way of slighted kids, who grow up hearing the worst words from the people meant to protect them, I was a little wild.

Not to shy away from statistics I, of course, found myself pregnant.

But this post isn’t about single mom-dom,  or growing up, in a way, with your child.

This post is for the mom that I met in the hospital.

When I went into labor it was thirteen weeks too early. My child and I were immediately separated. I remained in one hospital for a very blurry three days and my child was whisked away to another that could care for a baby her size.

Months would pass with visits to a NICU unit firmly worked into my schedule. It was all overwhelming and I didn’t have a very good grasp on what being a parent was going to really mean. Visits in the hospital were spent staring into an incubator and occasionally being able to stick gloved hands inside. Nothing like what home life would become.

I was typical, in a time just before smartphones, I was still selfish and naive. I was a millennial without a way to broadcast my idiocy to the world.

Then, one day as I strolled down the hospital halls I passed a woman clinging to the rail and whimpering as she tried to walk.

Where was her family? Or did she have one?

Where was a wheelchair? There were none.

I started to continue on my way but something made me stop. I stared down the hall at her, bent over and crying as she shuffled along.

It would have been all too easy to just move along, wash my hands, don the gown and gloves; but her soft cries pushed at my mind and another force took over.

I went back for her.

I didn’t know where she was going but I didn’t care.

I slipped my arm around her and helped to hold her up as she walked. Through tears she explained that she was going the same way as me. To the NICU. Her c-section was still fresh, having only given birth a handful of hours before. She wanted to see her baby but there were never any wheelchairs. So she decided to make the walk.

Knowing the pain all too well I walked with her to the NICU, helped her get a gown and the gloves, before making sure the NICU got to her to her baby, ideally with a wheelchair.

People say becoming a parent is about sacrifice or that anytime you vow your life to another you are taking a path of sacrifice and compromise. It’s easy to lose yourself among the weeds on that kind of path. It’s easy to forget that you don’t have to give everything.

It’s also easy to forget to look around and realize when that sacrifice is needed. It took nothing for me to walk with her that day but she taught me an amazing lesson. In the time it took us to make it down the hall she taught me what being a parent was about. She taught me that sometimes the sacrifice is a lot and sometimes it’s nothing but that you will never know it’s needed if you don’t look up and recognize the lives of others around you.

Ticking

Hope – WordPress Daily Prompt

I’m going to admit right now, I’m straight outta ideas for hope at the moment. I opened my computer, saw the prompt and thought Well shit. 

Then as I was scrolling through my computer I found a document just labelled “classic writings”. Hmmmm. It turned out to be a file that I had hastily pasted several older writings of mine into. 

So I’m going to break my rule and rather than try to produce something original on the spot (that’s the idea of challenging myself right?). I’m going to use this piece. I wrote this about nine years ago.


Sometimes I hear the ticking, loud as can be in my head. The incessant ticking. A time bomb that waits years to release its poison, but when it does it is my time. I know then, when I hear, that I must go to work. My work is dirty, faithless, but it is my work . . . it is beauty, by my definition. Yes, it is loveless, taking the souls of the few good men who are mixed with the souls of the hated. It is safe to say that he has his hands in good here, he knows what he has done and lately the ticking does not stop. I sweep away one after another, whisking them to the hidden realms. I sometimes pass War, he is at his best these days. The creation of atomic bombs and nuclear weapons have set him astride a metal cannon of a horse. Faster than lightning he descends and he does not leave until his work is utterly done . . . and mine is just beginning. Occasionally I hear Kindness and Hope crying, locked away in our masters dungeon. They are my sisters yet I feel no love or despair; I feel no emotion. Mercy is the only one left, she alone has not been caught. Everyday he draws closer to her, everyday she saves one more soul that should have been his. Her work is small, but greatly aggravating for our master.

Still I hear the ticking, the clock telling me that someone else has run out of time, that someone worse has survived. I glide in on the darkness, the deafness of those last few moments. I laugh out of fear; the fear pasted across their faces as they feel my cold breath on their skin. I give them one second, just one, to decide; then they are swept away with me. Down we go, through the realms, down to the very bottom where the underworld lies. Where one shall be judged and await the future of their soul. They will all go back, they will all be deposited once again. Only a few, a select few, stay. These are the good men, the wise men . . . the enemies. Indeed our master has his hands soaked in the blood, just the way he prefers it. I rest until I hear the ticking, but these days it is constant. Yes, indeed, the ticking never stops.

The Truck

Abandoned – WordPress Daily Prompt

 

“Have you been abandoned?” The reality of it all drops on me like a ton of bricks. Have I been abandoned? No, I’m here of my own volition. 

He moves closer with every breath, his eyes running the length of my body, undressing me. Every fiber of my being wants to scream but I’m overwhelmed by his thick cologne. “You can stay here.” He leans in, no doubt wanting a kiss but I reel back. No. Nope. No sir. 

Shock, disappointment … “Did you slip?” Something like that.  “Are you ok?”

Without another word I turn and run.

My pride carries me back to the rusty red pick up on the corner. I even hold the tears back until I’m ducked down in the passenger seat.

Have you been abandoned?

This truck contains all of my possessions. What’s left of them anyway. A bag of clothes, a toothbrush, a hairbrush … There’s not much else. The doors creak in the wind as cars rush by. For a moment I try to consider the gravity of the situation but the gray fabric slouching above me pulls my mind elsewhere.

What a piece of shit. Him and the truck.

Have you been abandoned?

The words echo. My gut knows the truth but my mind isn’t ready to consider that. None the less, the words leak to the forefront. I could go home. 

I shake it away. Even if I wanted to I don’t have a phone to call them.

No, this stupid old truck is home now. This stupid old truck that was driven around by that stupid prick of a boyfriend.

Have I been abandoned? 

The smell of cheap cologne haunts me. I had almost given in for a hot meal.

Almost.

Fuck. 

A fresh bout of tears rocks my body. The force surprises me. Huge tears pour down my cheeks. Each one a fresh reminder of those words.

Music

Music – WordPress Daily Prompt

 

 

Music moves. A slow steady rhythm, a pulse to our world. It rises and falls with the tides, swings in and out with the winds. It pushes you. It binds you. It sets the backdrop to everyday, every moment. Even a second can be described in perfect harmony. Whether you run to it, love to it, think to it or just listen to it. It seeps through your pores infusing itself until it becomes you; the very breath that keeps you alive.

It’s the essence, the steady pulse of a city street or the slow breeze of a beach. The emotions that you hold on to, hoping to squash before they become too much; it grabs those and whips them around like a dog with a toy. It tempts you, pushing you to places you never thought you’d be. It races through your body, a rising, until you’re soaring.

Just when you thought you couldn’t take another second, another chord, another note. It releases you, washing you clean. It embraces you, bringing you back down.

It’s anger and violence. It’s loving and gentle. It’s loud and raucous. It’s slow and sensual.

It’s every second of every day. A rhythmic movement to the world around you.

How Many Ways

Scars – WordPress Daily Prompt

Let’s talk about the bruises and bumps. The cuts and the digs. Let’s talk about the scars.

Bloody knees and scraped arms come by easy. Cuts to the soul are harder to find. Dig a little deeper child, find the rough, dry spots.

Slide your fingers along the lines. Revel in the stories of darkness that formed canyons in the mind. Dig a little deeper dear.

Words can’t bleed but they can cut straight to the quick. Let’s count all the marks, the small pocks that form this crater.

Foundations of self hate, built so deeply into your form, they manifest through every cracking smile.

Cry yourself to sleep at night, cradling those cuts close to your heart. Wish for another chance, a fresh start.

Reset, refresh, bring it back to zero. Find a center away from the cliffs that have formed.

Jagged edges force your saviors away.

How often do you stare off into night, counting the ways?

To know is to know the scars. To walk the path is to travel among broken glass.

Bumps and bruises will heal, scars will forever be etched. Forming deep lines along the smooth surface of the mind.

They swallow you whole, consuming the being until there is no more.

Stare into the night and wander.

How many ways there are.

 

Curve

Curve – WordPress Prompt

Your lips caress the inches from one bend to another; tickling my skin as you travel the lines. My fingers breeze through your hair, every strand curving between my grip. You move recklessly, clinging to the curves as you race. Adrenaline pushes us to travel faster and faster. A mist veils the curves as we slip and careen. The race ends suddenly, a crash of souls that tumbles across the finish line. Your fingers glide along the curves, tracing every move.