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Each of us has our own unique GPS system... Truth-telling is the most thorough navigation tool.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Here I’ve been wallowing in the loss of my lover nonstop the last three months. Bemoaning the fact I can’t call him and get him to deliver within a few hours or days, one of those sessions that use to give my life it’s meaning. I pushed him away. I caused the riff. I said goodbye. Now there are minutes I can’t breathe because the lover he was to me in our deepest moments, is lodged under my breath. If I move, I’ll bust apart.

My mother was sick with cancer last year. We got her through chemo. She stopped taking her thyroid medication and was a day away from death before we discovered the problem. She slept on a hospital bed for four months, and had to be strapped into a wheelchair for much of that time or she’d slither out the bottom like a silver fish. Yet, these past five or six months, she seemed to be getting stronger, returning to her elegantly spunky, opinionated self.

Lately, there’s been talk that in addition to her COPD, which can’t be cured, she also might have Hydrocephalus - Water On The Brain. I had no idea my mother was so much weaker than she was just two weeks ago during my parent’s fiftieth wedding anniversary.

I chose to come down and spend Oscar Sunday with the folks. I knew she’d love that. I’d bring the bottle of Mumm’s, given to me on my 45th birthday, I’d not yet had reason to uncork. It’s much more fun to watch the Academy Awards in the same room, than to make eight or fifteen calls back and forth all night. Tonight she took the plates to the table before we'd placed the slices of flank steak on them. This week she was asleep by 7:30. She’s been scuffing the bottom of her right foot on the ground when she walks more than before.

Laying at the foot of their bed, with them holding hands up at the headboard, they couldn’t see my silent tears. Here I’ve been moaning about my celibacy for weeks. Going on and on about what I’ve lost. And like all loving mothers, she listened and sympathized. What about what she is losing? Can I hold her and comfort her when I’m so devastated I might lose her?

Feeling as if an uzi had blasted through my heart region leaving shards and malfunction, I felt the desperation to write and say, I CAN’T STAND NOT TALKING TO YOU. Not wanting to weep, or sniffle, or show my distress I was able to just feel that internal chasm widen and deepen until it took over most my body. We watched the awards and shared the Mumm’s with strawberries and cashews. We talked about the superficiality and hype of the whole dang drama and how distressing it was to have to sit through so many commercials.

I massaged my father’s neck and shoulders. I snuggled and rubbed my mother. I’ve always said, I have the depth of my mother’s emotion, and my father’s inability to deal with it. I’m feeling it now, feeling not only the loss of my orgasms, but also the eventual loss of the one who has loved me more than any other person on the planet, given more of herself to me than any other being. The thought that she’ll leave me had me speechless. Afraid to turn around, afraid to show my tears, afraid to speak and bring to the surface all the terror we three were feeling inside our own hearts at the thought of something breaking up our party.

Reese Witherspoon thanked her parents for always being proud of her, regardless of her actions or behavior. I didn’t have that. When I won awards and was popular, they were proud. When I walked off the beaten path and didn’t use my potential to succeed but to burrow down deeper and discover my true self, I felt their lack of pride in me loud and clear.

I know now, they only wanted me to be happy. In their eyes I haven’t been as happy as I could have been. I’ve hidden much of the happiness I have felt, fearing it inappropriate. I want to hide no longer. Every day I have with her left, I want her to know how grateful I am she’s been my mother. How fortunate I am to have her depth, and ability to care and communicate. After all, not having sex isn't nearly as negative as not having life.

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