I miss her the most at night.
She’s been gone almost five weeks and although it’s been easy to fill the days with friends and exercise and work and even a little bit of travel mixed in for good measure, the nights aren’t such a simple story.
Being a writer is a strange thing, full of contradictions.
One one hand, you think you have something worthwhile to say. If you didn’t, you wouldn’t be writing. There’s a sense, deep inside of you, that you can tell stories in a way others can’t. You can sift and hum and weigh, and finally find it -that perfect word or sentence or phrase to express a previously inexpressible feeling. The worn-down feeling of a relationship on its last wobbling legs, the suffocating experience of being a mother to small children, the warm crush of close family, the hot rush of a sexual encounter.
On the other hand, your words are shit and your sentences are garbage and your sentiments are trite, overwrought, and pedestrian. You’re just repeating what other (better) writers have been saying (more skillfully) for decades.
A few weeks ago I went to see my doctor about a mole on my arm (as you may have guessed, this will not a particularly sexy blog post). She referred me to a different doctor, who would probably be unhappy if she knew I’ve been calling her The Mole Lady in conversations with friends and family, especially since she is quite elegantly named.
Anyway, this morning it was finally my appointment with The Mole Lady, where she decided it’d best to remove the whole thing – “the whole thing” being a pencil-eraser-sized dot on my left forearm.
It started off well enough, the sharp prick of the anaesthetic needle, no feeling at all while she used a scalpel to cut away the small chunk of flesh. But then came the stitches.
I’ve been feeling unsettled lately for two very specific reasons.
First, because in a week’s time, Olive will be flying across the country to stay with her dad. He moved to Ontario at the beginning of April, and our custody arrangement has changed significantly as a result. We are still working out what will work best for Olive, but the likeliest outcome is that Olive will live with me for the majority of the year and for a portion of the summer, when time off school permits longer visits, Olive will spend time in Ontario.
I have a lot of feelings about this. Part of me is desperate for a break and part of me is excited that she’s going to spend time with her dad and part of me is deeply, deeply uncomfortable with the whole situation because she’s going for seven weeks. Seven weeks.
You know when you think you know something? You know this thing so well, in fact, that you don’t even think about it anymore, it’s just an accepted part of your worldview. The sky is blue. Olive never stops talking. E=MC2. These are just facts! Generally accepted truths!
Well, this afternoon one of my own personal truths shattered and I am still reeling from the aftershock.
In case it wasn’t obvious already, this story is about boobs.