Last Updated On May 13, 2018

 

The moon is combing her hair In the mirrors of the river And a bull is looking at her Hidden among the thicket..The rosemaries of the mountains kiss his forehead The stars and constellations bathe him in silver And the little bull is fierce and of valiant caste -Gipsy Kings

 

 

As I was jockeying for a decent cart at Tops yesterday, a woman approached me. She had an infant carseat perched in the front of her cart shrouded by a pink chenille blanket.

She began, “Would it be terrible if I just…”

Before I even processed what was taking place, I found myself internally dividing in response to “would it be terrible” as I reviewed my own sins of parenting past.

Would it be terrible to leave her in the car while I run into the store?
Would it be terrible if she recognized the golden arches of McDonalds before the age of two?
Would it be terrible if I binge watched Forensic Files so hard that she thought the narrator was someone she knew?
Would it be terrible to put undiluted juice in her bottle?
Would it be terrible to sneak over to the neighbor’s house during nap time?
Would it be terrible to put my wine cooler in the cup holder of my double stroller?

WOULD IT BE TERRIBLE?! WOULD IT?!

The woman in front of me wants a cigarette and is considering leaving her carted baby parked by the window inside the vestibule.

“I mean, I would be staring at her right outside the window. That should be ok, right?”

I look around for someone who knows things. I come up empty.

I can smell her desperation. And it smells so fucking familiar. Yes, the desperation for release but also the special desperation of motherhood where you just need someone to tell you what to do because there are too many considerations and too many expectations and too few resources and NOTHING MAKES SENSE ANY MORE!

Being no better than most humans who identify with other humans and find it a little too close for comfort- I am straddling two conditions. One half that detects familiarity and has compassion, and the other half that feels disgust.

So naturally I was like, “Listen, I know your vagina is ripped to hell and you haven’t slept for at least six weeks but you should really adopt some healthier habits. Whats another lifestyle change? I mean you are a mother now, you don’t have unapproved needs.”

Actually I offer to sit on the bench next to her cart and read the paper while she takes a pit stop.

I wasn’t completely transparent with her as to why. I didn’t believe the child was in any danger on the other side of the glass from her mother. Statistically I was fairly certain the trip across the parking lot or the second hand smoke both carried more risk.

I was afraid for the mother. I was afraid for the judgement and wrath she might incur, and afraid of the fall out if someone decided to call the authorities. Given she was a woman of color I felt both these ramifications would be harsher and more likely.

I wonder in how many situations it makes more sense to fear for the mother?

Before she went out, she lifted the blanket to check on the infant.

I glanced perfection.
Pink bow of lip in concentrated slumber,
Raven curls pressed to forehead,
Full lashes alight like butterflies on delicate lids,
And the most adorable tiny pink gingham sneakers laced on her feet.
My breathe strangled on this ephemeral thing.
Those sneakers that will never fit long enough to ever touch earth….

But I averted my gaze quickly as to not give a “I want to steal your baby” vibe. Besides, this was practical mama time. This was help another mama out time. A time for connectedness and solidarity in vice and survival and in some very limited sense, community.

Happy Mothers Day

 

Last Updated On May 13, 2018

 

The moon is combing her hair In the mirrors of the river And a bull is looking at her Hidden among the thicket..The rosemaries of the mountains kiss his forehead The stars and constellations bathe him in silver And the little bull is fierce and of valiant caste -Gipsy Kings

 

As I was jockeying for a decent cart at Tops yesterday, a woman approached me. She had an infant carseat perched in the front of her cart shrouded by a pink chenille blanket.

She began, “Would it be terrible if I just…”

Before I even processed what was taking place, I found myself internally dividing in response to “would it be terrible” as I reviewed my own sins of parenting past.

Would it be terrible to leave her in the car while I run into the store?
Would it be terrible if she recognized the golden arches of McDonalds before the age of two?
Would it be terrible if I binge watched Forensic Files so hard that she thought the narrator was someone she knew?
Would it be terrible to put undiluted juice in her bottle?
Would it be terrible to sneak over to the neighbor’s house during nap time?
Would it be terrible to put my wine cooler in the cup holder of my double stroller?

WOULD IT BE TERRIBLE?! WOULD IT?!

The woman in front of me wants a cigarette and is considering leaving her carted baby parked by the window inside the vestibule.

“I mean, I would be staring at her right outside the window. That should be ok, right?”

I look around for someone who knows things. I come up empty.

I can smell her desperation. And it smells so fucking familiar. Yes, the desperation for release but also the special desperation of motherhood where you just need someone to tell you what to do because there are too many considerations and too many expectations and too few resources and NOTHING MAKES SENSE ANY MORE!

Being no better than most humans who identify with other humans and find it a little too close for comfort- I am straddling two conditions. One half that detects familiarity and has compassion, and the other half that feels disgust.

So naturally I was like, “Listen, I know your vagina is ripped to hell and you haven’t slept for at least six weeks but you should really adopt some healthier habits. Whats another lifestyle change? I mean you are a mother now, you don’t have unapproved needs.”

Actually I offer to sit on the bench next to her cart and read the paper while she takes a pit stop.

I wasn’t completely transparent with her as to why. I didn’t believe the child was in any danger on the other side of the glass from her mother. Statistically I was fairly certain the trip across the parking lot or the second hand smoke both carried more risk.

I was afraid for the mother. I was afraid for the judgement and wrath she might incur, and afraid of the fall out if someone decided to call the authorities. Given she was a woman of color I felt both these ramifications would be harsher and more likely.

I wonder in how many situations it makes more sense to fear for the mother?

Before she went out, she lifted the blanket to check on the infant.

I glanced perfection.
Pink bow of lip in concentrated slumber,
Raven curls pressed to forehead,
Full lashes alight like butterflies on delicate lids,
And the most adorable tiny pink gingham sneakers laced on her feet.
My breathe strangled on this ephemeral thing.
Those sneakers that will never fit long enough to ever touch earth….

But I averted my gaze quickly as to not give a “I want to steal your baby” vibe. Besides, this was practical mama time. This was help another mama out time. A time for connectedness and solidarity in vice and survival and in some very limited sense, community.

Happy Mothers Day

Last Updated On May 13, 2018

The moon is combing her hair In the mirrors of the river And a bull is looking at her Hidden among the thicket..The rosemaries of the mountains kiss his forehead The stars and constellations bathe him in silver And the little bull is fierce and of valiant caste -Gipsy Kings

As I was jockeying for a decent cart at Tops yesterday, a woman approached me. She had an infant carseat perched in the front of her cart shrouded by a pink chenille blanket.

She began, “Would it be terrible if I just…”

Before I even processed what was taking place, I found myself internally dividing in response to “would it be terrible” as I reviewed my own sins of parenting past.

Would it be terrible to leave her in the car while I run into the store?
Would it be terrible if she recognized the golden arches of McDonalds before the age of two?
Would it be terrible if I binge watched Forensic Files so hard that she thought the narrator was someone she knew?
Would it be terrible to put undiluted juice in her bottle?
Would it be terrible to sneak over to the neighbor’s house during nap time?
Would it be terrible to put my wine cooler in the cup holder of my double stroller?

WOULD IT BE TERRIBLE?! WOULD IT?!

The woman in front of me wants a cigarette and is considering leaving her carted baby parked by the window inside the vestibule.

“I mean, I would be staring at her right outside the window. That should be ok, right?”

I look around for someone who knows things. I come up empty.

I can smell her desperation. And it smells so fucking familiar. Yes, the desperation for release but also the special desperation of motherhood where you just need someone to tell you what to do because there are too many considerations and too many expectations and too few resources and NOTHING MAKES SENSE ANY MORE!

Being no better than most humans who identify with other humans and find it a little too close for comfort- I am straddling two conditions. One half that detects familiarity and has compassion, and the other half that feels disgust.

So naturally I was like, “Listen, I know your vagina is ripped to hell and you haven’t slept for at least six weeks but you should really adopt some healthier habits. Whats another lifestyle change? I mean you are a mother now, you don’t have unapproved needs.”

Actually I offer to sit on the bench next to her cart and read the paper while she takes a pit stop.

I wasn’t completely transparent with her as to why. I didn’t believe the child was in any danger on the other side of the glass from her mother. Statistically I was fairly certain the trip across the parking lot or the second hand smoke both carried more risk.

I was afraid for the mother. I was afraid for the judgement and wrath she might incur, and afraid of the fall out if someone decided to call the authorities. Given she was a woman of color I felt both these ramifications would be harsher and more likely.

I wonder in how many situations it makes more sense to fear for the mother?

Before she went out, she lifted the blanket to check on the infant.

I glanced perfection.
Pink bow of lip in concentrated slumber,
Raven curls pressed to forehead,
Full lashes alight like butterflies on delicate lids,
And the most adorable tiny pink gingham sneakers laced on her feet.
My breathe strangled on this ephemeral thing.
Those sneakers that will never fit long enough to ever touch earth….

But I averted my gaze quickly as to not give a “I want to steal your baby” vibe. Besides, this was practical mama time. This was help another mama out time. A time for connectedness and solidarity in vice and survival and in some very limited sense, community.

Happy Mothers Day