Thursday, April 21, 2011

We Go On

I feel some better and let me just say right here and right now that I have the most precious friends on earth and that includes you, yes you, and thank-you.
You know who you are and hello, I love you. I love you true.

Here's what I think is going on.

Jessie's leaving. And as we all know, I'm not dealing with that real well.
Each of my kids left at some point, although Lily only went across town and Jessie, too, for that matter, when she started college but when you can get home in twenty minutes, it's not really that traumatic for anyone.

We all know this. And we all know that I am 100% into Jessie leaving because Jessie needs to spread those long gorgeous wings of hers and make her journey into this world and she has a man who loves her and they're going to make a home together and try that on for size and I love everything about that plan.
I don't even mind driving to see them.
That will be good too.

But. When Hank and May were little, like two and four or something, I separated and then divorced from their father and because it drove me to the point of madness when they had to go to their father's house (which I wanted them to do, I desperately wanted him to be part of their lives and he was and it's been so good that he has and continues to be so) I had to do this disassociation thing to preserve my sanity.
I had to drop them off and say good-bye and then somehow convince myself that I had no children. Of course I didn't really convince myself of that. It was impossible. But perhaps I did some sort of splitting thing- something that worked for me at the time but looking back, I realize it was not healthy.

And I believe that I am still doing that when one of my children takes off.
It's part of my bones now.
And this before-part- this part where Jessie is still here but is certainly going and plans are being made for her graduation and for her moving is a sort of limbo, a sort of well, I'd almost describe it as purgatory.
It is honestly going to be easier when she's gone.
Because right now I feel like every time I see her I not only have to admit that yes, she is quite real and that she is my daughter, I also have to fight the urge to just...okay, I don't know what. Does ingest her sound too weird? I was just talking to May about this and she reminded me of Where The Wild Things Are and how the monsters tell Max when he is leaving, "We'll eat you up we love you so!"
Do I want to put her back in the womb? My pocket? Do I want to tuck her into my overalls and keep her safe because I honestly believe that that very emotion- the need to keep my child safe- is the one that has tormented me with any separation whether the children were babies or whether they have been adults?

And believe you me- I know with every fiber of my being that I cannot keep my babies safe even if they are only twenty minutes away. This has, as I keep saying, NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH LOGIC.
It's a form of insanity I came up with to prevent me from being insane.
It's not really working.
It's not really healthy.

But. It is what it is. And some days it's just going to be harder than others.

I found myself after my walk eating my lunch in front of the Real Housewives of New York which is crap, crap, crappity McCrap! but it soothed me. Okay, it anesthetized me. And I thought that I could probably just sit there all day long, watching the McCrap of rich bitches but I didn't. I went to town and bought some Easter Basket stuff for Owen and went to the seafood store and bought shrimp and went to Goodwill and fell in love with a little Peruvian or something boy and went to Publix and got horseradish and pears and string cheese and green beans and when I got home, people had called to check on me and then May called and we talked and we laughed and my god, how that helps.
Because that girl went away. Oh boy. Did she go away.
And she came back.
And she calls me and we laugh and we laugh and it's going to be the same with Jessie. One way or another.

And May reminding me of the monsters and how they wanted to eat Max because they loved him so made me feel so much better somehow. Like maybe I'm just a wild thing and not a monster.

Owen's coming tomorrow and no time for the blues with him around. And on Sunday we're going to Lily's house for egg hunting and brunch and won't that be lovely? Lily will host the party and I'll bring angel biscuits, and the torch, for this year at least, will be passed, and I will love all those babies of mine so much that I'll want to eat them up.

But I won't. I'll eat some ham (HAM!) casserole and biscuits and fruit instead.

And right now I hear that Mr. Moon has gotten his Cutlass started out in the garage. I hear its deep throaty growl across the yard and there- there's something to look forward to. Me and Mr. Moon in the Cutlass, the top down, us driving somewhere together, our time at last.
Maybe we'll be driving to Asheville, North Carolina. Maybe we'll be driving to Las Vegas.
Who knows?
But that old American car will eat up the miles and we'll smile, smile, smile.

Okay. Please bear with me. I'm in the middle of a process. I may not be dealing with it in the best way, but I'm dealing. And I'm not alone.

Neither are you. Whatever process you're in the middle of. You are not alone.

And there's no shame in it, whatever it is. We are animals and we are humans and we are monsters and we have fears and we have very, very sad times and we can peek out of the curtains and say help and it'll somehow be okay.

It's all part of the process. A least this is the theory I'm working with now.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. I have lately been having thoughts of sheer panic because Hannah drives now and picks all the kids up from school and daycare for me during the week and god it is a help but every single thing I cherish the MOST is in that car at the same time, and I think I can keep them safe if I never let them drive. Or leave the house. But it isn't true, which we DO know, but...but.

    We are all going through something, so I imagine if we all kind of keep loving each other through it, we will all be ok-whatever THAT means, right? :)

  2. I'm not alone? Really?

    Oh. That's good. Thank you!

  3. well, ms. moon, i know a bit of what you are feeling and you are definitely not alone. there will be a new normal and it will hold gifts in its hands but in the meantime you have to weather the transition, the UNRESOLVED, and as we know so well, that is sheer hell. breathe, dear one. that's all you can do for now. breathe and believe.

  4. Yup. The process. I keep having to remind myself that there is no end to it -- that it's all process. I have a daughter who will, essentially, NEVER leave (except at the end) -- and the process for reckoning with that is not harder or easier than reckoning with the leaving of my boys. I guess that means that it truly is a process, and whatever you can do to stay sane throughout is fine.

    Love to you. And I wish you could drive that Cutlass out to southern Cal -- or I'll meet you in Vegas.

  5. Well, thanks for this chat. My son got his first college packet in the mail today and I got tears in my eyes at the mailbox. It's one thing to think of it in the abstract and another to have it show up in an envelope. We have another year together, but what a process of figuring out where to be and where to go.... I'm not ready for any of the babies to be gone. But that is the way of things, isn't it?
    I just love the visual of you and Mr. Moon with the top down, driving to Asheville or wherever.
    Thanks for sharing your process and your heart with us, it's amazing to me every time how much someone else's honesty can help make sense of my inner mayhem.

  6. As you know, my eldest has been 500 miles away with his Dad for going on 4 years. He's only been back a handful of times and has refused, no, CHOSEN not to visit us in almost 2 years now. I am very familiar with your coping mechanism. But I try so hard now to strike some sort of balance in my heart and mind. I'm just pleased your relationship with Jessie is loving and kind and you will miss her for all this right reasons.

    Hugs to you!

  7. I agree... somehow the "impending departure" is always harder. You just wanna rip that band aid off! Like every time you see the person, you can't fully enjoy it because part of you is grieving about them leaving! sigh...

    It sure is a process... one after the damn next. :=p But you do sound like you're acknowledgement of it and allowing May to tickle your funny bone and your friends to help in what ways they can is all good steps in the right direction.

  8. God, yes: when I divorced, my little Jonah was barely two and I did just that thing: disassociate, try to act for those three or so days he was with his father (not, like your children's father it seems, a human I could/can bare to stand, but--divorce sans lawyer is a terrible thing) because otherwise, it would be unbearable. Even now, when he's almost 6, I can barely keep from crying--not the night that he's gone, but the night before the day he goes to his father's house. The anticipation is perhaps the worst. And so I blogged and cried and blogged and cried. Oh, and drank.

    And you should know it stopped me cold when I read that, Ms. Moon, and my little monkey brain went: holy shit, I wasn't the only one who did this. Thank God.

  9. Today I cried because I thought of my daughter grown up and gone, and then I cried because she may never grow up and live on her own. It is indeed a process.

    Sending you mountains of love.

  10. Life is a process from start to finish. I am sure that you will be okay as Jessie embarks on part of her process of this life. Enjoy that car ride!

  11. Mama, I can understand how you are feeling, because I think I might be going through with a mini-version of the same thing. Of course, I'm thinking about how I am leaving everything I know and love- you, daddy, Lily, May, Hank, Owen, Melissa, and it goes on and on. It breaks my heart to have to go through with it, but at the same time, I know my heart is strengthening and growing and I am ready for this new love adventure.

    And you know I'll still be reading your blog every single day. I tried to read your blog at the hospital today and for some reason *cough cough* it was banned. I'm so proud to be your daughter.

    I would love it if you and Daddy drove the old convertible up to see me. I bet it would be the most beautiful of drives. <3

  12. "And May reminding me of the monsters and how they wanted to eat Max because they loved him so made me feel so much better somehow. Like maybe I'm just a wild thing and not a monster."

    Preach, Sister Moon.

  13. Processing too. Meet you in Vegas.

  14. Jessie is a big girl but she is still your Baby. The last one to leave the neighborhood of the nest is harder, non? Good thing you have the O-Boy nearby. It is not easy having my Girl and my Corn Tiger so far away.

    Sending hugs! x0 N2

  15. I agree with N2--Jessie is your baby. Your feelings are justified! I don't know how I'll handle it when the time comes here. But you are right--it is part of the process in life.

  16. Kori- Sometimes I wonder why we have children at all. It never changes, this need to keep them safe.

    Amna- Nope. Not alone.

    Angella- Breathe and believe. Both at the same time? I will try.

    Elizabeth- Vegas is sounding better all the time. We could definitely get some process-inducing ya-ya's out there. Ooh boy.

    Mel- See? By the time your son leaves for college, I'll be on the other side of this and I'll be able to say, "Oh, it's okay. I survived. You will too."
    I hope.

    Ms. Trouble- I don't know how you bear the sorrow. Well, yes, I do. You've done what you've had to do. And I know how lucky I am. I do know that.

    Ms. Fleur- Spot on, sugar.

    Sara- As much as I know that divorce is sometimes the only way, I can't help but wonder at the insanity it causes all the way around. No, you are not the only one who does this. Believe me. Bless you, honey.

    Terena- And enough love back to fill in the valleys.

    Syd- Thank-you for dragging me back to solid ground. You are so good at that.

    HoneyLuna- My blog is banned in the hospital? Well. That's another reason never to go there! Oh honey. It's all going to be okay, wonderful, terrific and just-as-it-should-be and you know me- I'm batshit crazy. That's not just an expression around here. I look at the picture of you and Vergil on the refrigerator and it calms my heart. You are ready for this. You are so ready. And I am so proud of you. When are you coming over this weekend?
    I have some mighty good shrimp in the refrigerator...
    And I promise not to eat you. Not even one toe.

    gradydoctor- I'm preaching to myself, you know.

    Omgrrrl- I'm thinking...

    N2- I know how lucky I am. You must miss that little boy and his mama so much.

    Michele R- Life is fucking hard sometimes.

  17. I will be over tomorrow after I get some homework done. And if you want to eat one toe, I will allow it- I don't much care for my little ones anyway. As long as I can eat some of dat scrimp.

  18. Toes sort of look like shrimp anyway. I think for my birthday this year I want toe salad with pink dressing.

  19. My son left for a year and I grieved then he lost his fancy job and apartment and moved back home and the next time he moves out I'll have to go through it all over. It makes me crazy that he doesn't want me to live upstairs in an attic like the crone nature wants me to be. It's going to kill me this time. I am so feeling this.

  20. You must be SO PROUD to have a banned blog. I am PROUD of you! Way to go, Mary!!!!

    Personally, I think that's better than a damn blog award.

  21. Oh Ms. Moon, I love you. You are so frickin' good at expressing what you are feeling thinking experiencing. It is very obvious that you have your shit together (or as I like to say sometimes to the younger crowd - you have your poop in a group) and your processing things as well as you can.

  22. This must be so hard, the babies leaving on their own adventures. I go through mini versions of this when the kids go to stay the night with grandma and stuff. I can't imagine the feeling of it, but I'll be here, reading along and caring about you!

  23. I'm dreading the day my kids leave home, and start life apart from me. But I guess that's how it is. Life goes on.

  24. Ahhh Mary, I bet it's hard. But we're all here for you xx


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