smile and shrug

…what else can I do?


2 years gone.

She started middle school without me.  I was there though, for her 12th birthday.  Then came Christmas, and my birthday.  A new year starts.  His voice changed.  Easter baskets scavenged through on a long drive.  Mothers day – the first one apart – that one really hurt.

He turned 14.  He was taller than me.  Middle school graduation for him. Summer camp without me to pack for them.  He started his first year of high school – without me.  She is taller than me now too.  She starts her period.  I buy her bras.  He has a girlfriend now.  I never meet her.

Her 13th birthday, another christmas, a whole new year and the final documents are signed and dated.  Easter treasures left behind the seat of the car, discarded, dismissed, overlooked on that long drive.

Another mothers day no less painful than that first one.  He turns 15, he shaves regularly, he sometimes picks me up and laughs at me, he is more man than boy.  The cavern of loss between us grows deeper, wider, more impassable.

Another summer.  He plays in a band on a stage now.  I watch and just can’t believe he was once so small and tender and trusting.  She learned how to use a tampon, and plucks her eyebrows, and tells me she doesn’t understand why she can’t live with me.  I struggle to navigate the fine line between truth and between what she needs to know to feel safe, loved, and whole.  I’m not sure I”m successful.

2 years gone.  A third begins.

Please god… show up.


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