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21 Dec

“Who, If I Cried Out, Would Hear Me?” On Twitter, Tales And Tragedy

When I received the call telling me that my father had died, I cried. I cried loud, I cried hard, I fell to the ground and clutched at my aching chest and I wailed. And then, curled up on the floor, phone in hand, I tweeted.

I tweeted because it was instinct. I tweeted because it was the only thing that I could think of to do. I tweeted because I needed to get the words that were reverberating in my head and smashing against the walls of my mind out out out and into the world so that I could step back and see them/hear them/feel them and know that they weren’t just the narrative of some nightmare conjured up by that corner of my soul that holds and nurtures its darkest fears. I needed to face the words, and know that they were true. I needed to take control of the narration of the terrible story that was unfolding. I needed to speak. I needed to write.

So I tweeted.

9 Nov

Jesus In The Sky With Dinosaurs

When my father died a few months ago, my daughter drew this picture:

budge grandpa

‘This,’ she announced as we huddled over it together at my mother’s kitchen table, filling in the details, “is Grandpa’s Death House. It’s where he lives now.”

“I’m sure that he’s so happy that you made him such a wonderful Death House, sweetie. So happy.”

“He IS so happy. I made it so that every part of it is happy” – she pointed to the clouds made of hearts, the pink motorcycle balancing on the Christmas tree, the friendly shark (“because he needs pets”), the flowers nestled under the window through which the tiny shadow figures of her and her grandpa can be seen standing arm in arm – “so that he will be happy there. It’s where he lives now.” She pulled her crayon back from the picture and studied the finer detailing around the friendly ridgebacked shark. “Can we go visit him?”