“I cannot know what it’s like to live in this country with skin that isn’t white. But I can learn from those who do.” A new blog post at Baby Mama.
“Worrying about whether or not my daughter has taken her medication . . . I wouldn’t say that was a good part of my life. But the thought of not worrying anymore feels oddly like a loss. On August 24, we’ll help my daughter move into her dorm room, and I’ll probably remind her to keep her pills close at hand. And then we’ll say goodbye. And that night and the next morning and the next night and the morning after that and the day after that and the day after that and on and on, I won’t be there to tell her to take her pills. I won’t be there to refill her pillbox. I won’t be there to pack her pills for the day. I won’t be there. She’ll be there but I won’t.”
Another post over at babymama.com!
“It’s strange that two little scraps of fabric can send me tumbling down into the pit. How nice life would be if a bikini were just a bikini, a slice of cake just a slice of cake, a breast just a breast . . . but all these things are so fraught for most women, who’ve been taught to be their own severest critics, believing, perhaps, that if they rush to edit themselves, they can stave off the humiliation of having other people notice their flaws.”
Am I excited? I am excited. Look at how beautiful these are:
Out in hardcover late March, from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Expect more posts about this as the time draws nearer . . .
This piece first appeared on the Baby Mama website–feel free to read it there and also some of the other pieces I’ve written for them. Actually, click around the whole site while you’re there. Lots of good stuff. I’m reprinting it here to reach those of you who haven’t discovered Baby Mama yet. There’s adult language below. Be warned.
This morning, I woke up excited to go to the Los Angeles Pride Parade with my twenty-two-year-old gay son. We went last year and had a blast. I had already planned my outfit and we’d made a pre-parade brunch reservation in West Hollywood. This was going to be fun.
Then I looked at my phone and saw the breaking news: fifty people killed, many more injured, in a mass slaughter at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.
I don’t need to tell you how I felt. If you’re a human being, you know.
When my son woke up, I went into his room to talk to him. He hadn’t seen the news yet. I told him. And then I said I wasn’t sure I wanted to go to the parade, wasn’t even sure if we should go. It felt wrong to laugh and cheer and dance after a tragedy like that—and the Pride Parade is all about laughing and cheering and dancing.
And then my son said, “We have to go and show our support. We can’t let anyone scare us away or subdue or quiet us.”
So we went. I didn’t wear the bright pink skirt I was going to—my heart wasn’t in it—but I did wear my “fuck the patriarchy” tank top and Johnny wore his. (Doesn’t every family have matching “fuck the patriarchy” tank tops? If not, they should.) Republican senators had blocked a bill that might have prevented the shooter from easy access to the firearms he used to take so many innocent lives. So, you know … seriously, fuck the patriarchy.
We even kept our brunch reservation. While we were enjoying some really good eggs, we started getting texts from friends and family. Some guy had been arrested in Santa Monica with tons of weapons and claimed he’d been on his way to the Pride Parade. People were scared—he might have been caught but what if there were others who hadn’t been? Would we be safe?
Johnny and I looked at each other and shrugged and drank our coffee. We’d already made our decision. We wanted to be there.
We had a great time at the Parade. Yes, there were some religious nuts who had a very loud loudspeaker and were saying horrible things and damning us all to hell, and yes, there were bagpipers who stopped and played in front of us for way too long, but those were minor annoyances in a morning spent filled with people waving, smiling, throwing kisses, and loving one another.
There’s a lot to be scared of in this world. And there’s a lot to be proud of. I want to be someone who increases the amount of pride in the world and decreases the amount of fear. Join me, will you? Let’s start by going to the polls in November and voting for the candidates who are pro gun-control and anti-bigotry.
And maybe throw on a rainbow scarf or a “fuck the patriarchy” top if you’re lucky enough to have one. Can’t hurt.
I’ll be at the Barnes and Noble in Torrance, at the Del Amo Fashion Center, tomorrow at 1 pm. Please come visit! I will sign anything you want (usual disclaimers apply–I’m squeamish about flesh) and if experience proves correct, I’ll have plenty of time to just sit and chat with you because no one ever comes to these things. This is your chance to push me to write a sequel to EPIC FAIL!