I don’t know how to write here, right now.
I don’t know how to write here, because I am caught between the imperative to move forward in my life, in this life, in my life as Catherine, and the imperative – the desire – to dwell a little longer in this space where I am still my father’s daughter, where I am Cathy, where I can take all the time that I need to sort through the story, the mystery, of his life. What that has to do with me being able to write here: nothing, and everything. This is and always has been a quote-unquote mommy-blog, of sorts. It has been about my life as a mother. But the space that I am in now – it is quite a different space. My children have been very much a part of this journey, but only a part, and I have been at a loss as to how to tell the story of mothering through this kind of grief, this grief that reduces me to childishness. I am living this experience as a mother, but I don’t know how to frame it, in writing, within the context of my motherhood, and so I don’t know how to write here.
Of course, there is no law that states that I must only tell, here, stories that fall neatly within the genre of motherhood-memoir. And I have told stories, shared reflections, that fall outside of that genre before. But this, these stories, threaten to overwhelm me, to carry me away on another narrative altogether, one that has more to do with childhood and memory and mental illness and infidelity and love and suicide and robots. It’s a narrative that I want to follow – that, I think, I need to follow – but I’m not sure that this is the place for it. I’m not sure where is the place for it. And until I figure that out, all my other stories are smothered under its weight.
Emilia starts junior kindergarten today, and, oh, how many words would I have spilled about that experience, were I not so distracted by my grief? Jasper seems to have a speech-development delay: all of my angst around that would have been, should have, laid bare here. Kyle recently took his first trip alone with the two of them and it nearly killed him: that story might have been the funniest thing that I’d ever posted here. I’m not telling those stories, because I’m stuck.
My beautiful big girl at the site of her grandfather’s memorial.
I hope you’ll stick around while I figure this out.