I wrote EMBERS AND ASH some years ago, or so. I don’t remember the precise day, I remember the unhappy circumstance. I needed to come home. I was unwell. Truth, I was out of my fucking mind and the only person I wanted, needed and trusted was the one who birthed me. Her ferocious, constant, capable mother-love was the only thing that was not spinning out of control. The one I counted on, shared every milestone, pain, triumph, the prettiest and ugliest parts of myself. All the minutia that comes with living and choosing the risk of loving. I never wanted to come back home, no, no, no. Not in a million years. That for me meant failure, big time. What would the peanut gallery say? It still stings when I think about it too long, when I’m beating myself up which is more often than not. I’m not well, get over it, fight and it…
Anything written from your truest truths takes time, care and thoughtful consideration. I love The Vast Landscape. I freely gave away my deep, scariest, bravest secrets and biggest wishes. GEORGIA PINE. is the familiar extension, because that’s what humans do, move on, stick to our clan. Reflect on the memories, get comfortable, get uncomfortable, look back, only to be thrust forward. Ligaments wear down in invisible microscopic fragments, day by day.
‘Today was not a day of firsts. There had been so many life firsts, Addie stopped to look up. She did not want to miss one, with four babies there had been multitudes. The daughter responsible for making Addie a mother when she was barely an adult, Georgia showed her how. When she wasn’t doing it right, testing her to be better, stronger, more patient. She made life easier on her sisters, by default. Addie made mistakes with her firstborn, she could not fix. This was a different kind of firsts. Leave it to Georgia to hurt her heart, without meaning to. Addie needed the extra days at the Cove, to do nothing. Feel the sun; remember how much her mother loved it. When Addie asked, did she miss Hollywood, fame? Harrison laughed, shaking her head. “God, no. I got all this,” twirling round and round, stretching her arms towards the beach, house, sky, running her fingers through Adelaide’s gold mane. She knew with her whole heart, Harry meant it. Addie sighed. She was leaving, her quasi adult-child behind, her precocious, ginger. This was not a first. This was an unfirst, experiences they would share separately, living apart. Georgia would have to hold her mother’s hand, ever so gently letting go.’
This morning I told my mother to fuk off. I did not mean it, not exactly. Living here, where I don’t want to be, being sick, bad genes, I blame her. I can’t help it, I do. As I watch her walk to the car, a fragile, old woman it’s too much. She gave me her whole life, I can give her a fraction of mine. She knows I don’t mean it when the venom spews, before I can retract. I was her precious baby, happy girl, her funny, fearless child. I wonder how she felt, when I became a brat. The loud, mouth teenager, forever unhappy. She couldn’t fix me, Lord knows she tried. I called her, every night from NY pursuing my dreams, crying and alone. “You can always come home.” That’s what a good mother does, a mother like mine. She knew I wouldn’t give up, even before I did. Keep at it, she taught me persistence. She was my first call when I booked a modeling job for $12,000. That was a boatload of money, she was proud. I could tell. She has one tone, but a thousand different voices. One for every mood, situation, emotion. That’s what a good mother does. When my glorious, faulty wired mind went missing, I didn’t understand. She listened as I sobbed hysterically, for hours and hours, months on end. She never hung up the line. “You’re coming home, that’s it.” I believed her when she said I’d be ok, that’s what a good mother does. She was right, on Lithium my mind got better. I mustered the courage to go back to NY. She promised everything would work out. I called her, just to check in. She was my lifeline, to sanity. Everything was fine, until it wasn’t. I had seven years in New York, working, living without one psychotic episode. She listened when I was incoherent. That’s what a good mother does. “I wanna come home,” I cried, scared out of mind, seeing dead people. I could not find my way back. Out of the pain, the indescribable fear, the black hole. She came to get me. My seventy year old mother came, to bring her broken, adult daughter home. “Everything will be fine.” She lied, it won’t. On the days I hate her, because there is no one else around she takes it, silently. On the days I hate this place, this house, this illness and exhaustion, it’s mostly because I hate myself. I want to die, I don’t. I vacuum my frustrations, do the heavy lifting for her because she can’t. Because, that’s what a good daughter does.
I write stories, about mother-daughter relationships, that are only partially untrue.
GEORGIA PINE. – excerpt
Addie stressed over the twins, checked on them two or three times a night. She couldn’t breathe, scared they might break. “Comb your hair, brush your teeth. Chop-chop.” Adelaide was never so grateful to see her mother. That was a great day. Harry did that, she could take your worse days and throw them in your face. Make you face your fears, move on.