Tag Archives: United States

Pain is the new black


The interesting and artful disorder (some would just call it a mess) in my daughter’s room is shifting. Her yellow, pink and green walls are becoming more visible as I pull posters down, pack her books and cd’s and sweep away the dust. I can’t bear to remove the large posters of the mother animals kissing their babies, even now I tear up as I write. In one picture a long-necked giraffe mom bends down to nuzzle her new clothes-stick legged baby. The other picture is even larger – a close up of a baby elephant, so innocent, standing protected between its mother’s feet.

How dare my daughter grow up and leave me.

Mother and daughter, Urawa, Japan

Mother and daughter, Urawa, Japan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I met her at the airport recently as she stopped here in North Carolina on a trip from Los Angeles to South Carolina to visit a friend’s family. In the name of über security I couldn’t enter the airport so she walked to greet me and we hugged on the marked border of Exit and Enter. As we came together in our mother/daughter embrace our tears burst forth and wracked our faces and bodies. My bunny shook she cried so hard. I got to kiss her puffy cheek, my favorite thing to do with both my children.

Then it was over.

“Oh mom,” she said.

Oh, my sweet girl. Oh my walking heart.

The ever alert security fellow would not allow HRD to renter from whence she’d just come so she had to stand in line again for another sweep. Glad they are doing their jobs. But, oh gosh, my husband was one of the many who made it through airport security within the last year carrying a knife. He’d forgotten it was in his carry-on and even though his carry-on went through the X-ray machine and on to the plane it escaped everyone’s notice. Dude held the little knife up, amazed, when he got home.

“We should call the media,” I said.

TSA Passenger Screening

TSA Passenger Screening (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“I don’t want the attention,” he replied. Understandable in this world of competitive headline saturation.

So I, a mother who brought her identification, a print-out of her daughter’s itinerary, a letter from the government bearing her daughter’s name and our home address (the same address on my driver’s license) could not get a pass to enter the airport and eat breakfast with my older teenaged daughter.

There needs to be some sort of visitor security check-in line for people who don’t want to board a plane but want to visit with someone passing through, or just walk a close family member to a plane. Just one woman’s opinion but it’s a good one.

Meanwhile, the interesting assortment of flotsam in HRD’s room awaits. Usually I cry as I clean. It’s hard to raise your babies  – hug them, squeeze them, feed them and clean them – so they can leave. In the world no one will ever love our babies more than we do, no one will care so much about them in quite the same way. Give it up, give it over, let it go.

It’s really hard.


Thoughts of Survival

Who Killed Who?

Who Killed Who? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I escaped death. The surgery anesthesia didn’t kill me, the doctor didn’t slip on a damp towel while he was injecting me with heart-slowing solutions and my hospital gown did not inappropriately open, not while I was conscious anyway. Success!

A lot has happened in a week and a half: the hikers being held for ransom in Iran were released,  a 13-year-old boy in Colorado was sentenced to 8 years in juvenile hall for killing both of his parents and stabbing two younger siblings, a drone killed an American-born Muslim fanatic in the dusty hills of Afghanistan, Amanda Knox was found not guilty on appeal in Italy, 700 people protesting The Man were arrested in New York and protests are springing up across the country like fungi.

Plus, I’ll say it again: I didn’t die. Notice that not too many news organizations picked up that story but it is big news around here. When I say “around here” I mean in my mind. But let’s not quibble.

I have to say protesting The Man in New York falls into “these are a few of my favorite things” category. Granted, all protestors didn’t profess to be marching against The Man, but there was no cohesive reason to march en mass beyond unified indignation at tunnel-visioned, monolithic callous disregard for middle America. Or so it seems. If I could I’d be up there marching too. For what? I don’t know! Truth, justice and the American way I guess. Every good protest has a little theater thrown in.

Who are the voices behind the protests, movement to #OccupyWallStreet?

Then, about a week ago yet another “kid” in the town of Cornelius, NC killed his parents. I’m not talking about the 13-year-old boy in Colorado. This particular “kid” was 25-year-old but he lived at home and supposedly had mental issues evidenced by a few past run-ins with the law – but nothing that screamed “Future murderer here. Everybody look out – especially you two, the people who named him, hugged him, rocked him and changed his diapers when he was a baby!!!”

Who knows what the “kid’s” parents thought to themselves about their future killer or what they talked about behind closed doors. I think about those last violent moments, what it would be like to be killed by your own child.

Remember that 15-year-old boy Kip Kinkel in Oregon who shot his father, his mother then went to school and killed two students? He shot his dad in the back of his head. Did Kip cock the gun in another room so his dad only heard the pull of the trigger?  Then Kip went out to meet his mother as she got out of her car, she was coming home from accepting a teaching award. Kip walked up to her with his gun that he’d gotten as a gift, said “I love you Mom” and pulled the trigger.

Sometimes love means never having to say you’re sorry. Not this time.

I imagine beyond the human instinct of not wanting to die, a parent being confronted with death at the hands of their own child would feel deep regret for the life their child was now setting themself up for. I can’t even begin to uncover all that is turning our youth into unfeeling, impatient automatons. Start with the obsessive behavior toward video games, glorified violence in movies and on television, ear buds that separate people from each other and constant reliance on the Facebook/cell phone world.

Oh pish. I’m blathering. I can’t right any wrong all by myself, but venting is underrated. I’m glad to be back.