Musings and rants of a middle aged wife/mama with a few short stories (even poetry!) sprinkled throughout. I'm a sucker for happy endings.
LOOSE END The newlyweds in their stylish, designer wedding attire looked positively gorgeous and radiant as they laughed and talked with an older couple. I drew a deep breath, then walked over to where they were, holding a tray of champagne flutes filled with Dom Perignon.
Honest to a Fault
I‘m not used to attending parties where copious amounts of alcohol are served, not even while in college. They frown on that in the Southern Baptist college I received my business degree from. Yet here I was, at the company Christmas party, feeling woefully out of place. While everyone else imbibed heavily with various alcoholic beverages, dancing uninhibited; I stood awkwardly in a corner, nursing a red Dixie cup half full of too sweet, lukewarm apple cider. Dale, my supervisor, encouraged me to attend. He’s always telling me I need to loosen up, so, I took his advice. Normally, I would be home curled up with a book or attending a church service. I hoped I had put in enough of an appearance and decided to call it a night.
Sonny Came Home
It was a great day for fishing. The weather was not too sunny or hot; a gentle breeze blew once in a while. I checked my line, then slowly reeled. Nothing, not even a nibble. The fish don't seem to be biting. It would be dark in another hour. Nevertheless, I recast my line. Pleasant memories came to mind of a time when my children were younger and I would take them fishing. Now that they’re older, they don't seem to have much interest in it.
On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair. . .ugh, I did not want to hear that, considering I was driving through the desert heading home. I kept scanning through the stations. I wanna wake up where you are, I won’t say anything at all. . .and settled on that. I had the highway all to myself, no surprise considering it was just after two in the morning. Night driving is ideal for my line of work; I can drive wide open getting where I need to go, although I was really in no rush to get home. Michelle, my partner of nearly three years is pregnant and wants us to get married, even though I told her from the beginning I wasn’t keen on the idea of being a family man. I reminded her that we weren’t in the dark ages anymore; there was a simple remedy for her problem. She went ape shit after I mentioned that. There is a good possibility I don’t have a home to return to.
I always felt like a burden to you and Dad. I was never coordinated enough, pretty enough, confident enough. I was clumsy; always falling and hurting myself, breaking things because I was curious and heavy handed. You were such a young mother and you and Dad always worked so hard; I tried to help by cooking and cleaning up; however, my help always seemed to cause a bigger mess and made you impatient and stern.
Before we married, my husband (DH) asked how many children did I want. I told him maybe two; four at the most. He asked if I was open to adopting; it was something his family did and he wanted us to continue the tradition. His older brother was adopted, as were several cousins and an uncle. I told him, sure. Maybe we would have two children and adopt two. I really wanted to have at least one biological child. But, it was not meant to be. DH seemed to handle our infertility struggle better than I did. When I got to the place where becoming a parent was more important than giving birth, I was ready to adopt. First, I needed time to grieve.
I come from a family of very fertile women. In fact, all of my female cousins in my age range became pregnant in the same year. Once at a family barbecue one of my uncles joked, "Yeah, it was in the water and Kim drank sodas that month." His statement elicited many laughs. I laughed, too; however, a nagging thought loomed in the back of my mind: can I actually conceive and bear a child? When I expressed concerns to an aunt, she laughed and assured me that I was needlessly worrying; every woman in our family was made for this, in fact, her mother (my grandmother) had her last child in her late thirties; I would be no exception, according to her.
Tan, Spot, Oreo and Midnight
It was a cold, winter afternoon, a Sunday. My husband took the kids on an outing just so I could have some me time. So, what to do? Clean house? Nah, I do that every day. Read? Maybe. How about a run? It had been months since I ran. I used to run regularly; I even trained for marathons. Today’s temperature hovered around the mid-thirties; cuddling up with a good book and reading uninterrupted was sounding better by the minute.
Longing for Normal
The latest virulent COVID variant swept the country, claiming adults fifty years and older and immunocompromised persons; anyone else under fifty seemed virtually immune. The government declared a mandatory quarantine to rid the country of the virus once and for all. A more radical solution of segregating youth from their families was advised by the Consortium, a think tank of doctors, sociologists, intellectuals and government officials. Defiant families were forcibly separated and sent spartan military camps. My brother and I were sent to Our Lady of Lourdes Preparatory, a refurbished abandoned Catholic boarding school near the sea since our parents fully cooperated, as did most others with the high hopes of getting back to normal. The separation was supposed to only last six months; it’s been fourteen months since I last saw my parents.