I sat at the table with my mother, her blue-veined hands tapping out a tune that only she could hear. She smiled at me vacantly. I knew she couldn’t remember who I was, though she seemed to acknowledge that I was benign, something simple and pleasant like the institutional tea set and the cheap biscuits. My mother devoured them greedily, like a little girl at a rival’s birthday party. The activity room had a dozen tables like ours, covered with cheerful chintz tablecloths and circled with residents and their visitors in various degrees of torpor.
A touching work of fiction, based on true events.
We are waiting for an ambulance. After a week of various diagnoses my son is feeling sick, not eating, not drinking, and not taking his medicine…
Annabeth shuts the book and leans over Iris, placing a kiss on top of her damp forehead. She is running a fever and will surely wake up overnight when the medication wears off. It pricks Annabeth’s conscience to know that Iris will cry out for “Daddy” until she remembers that he no longer lives here…
Carol liked to stand in corners when she was anxious. It calmed her down to tighten her focus on a dried drip of paint, the seam in wallpaper, or a crack in the wall of the visiting Professor’s house. Her husband was a professor of History at Sweetgum University. The booming emptiness of the house, like a quarry, played on Carol’s nerves…
Seated at the grand piano, Margot became the woman she might have been rather than the one she was. Gone was the carping woman craving her headache pills; in her place was a maestro.
‘Oh, how wonderful. You’ll have some help,’ people cooed when I muttered through clenched teeth that my mother-in-law was coming to stay. How they thought it was helpful to be driving over a hundred and fifty miles to the airport, with a two-month old breast-feeding baby in tow, I couldn’t imagine.
Krysta opened her heavy eyes and glanced at the clock to her right. The bright red numbers did little to warm her heart as they read 5.45am, which meant she’d had just 5 hours of sleep, AGAIN. She could have closed her eyes and slept all day if it hadn’t been for the little size fives in ‘Thomas the Tank Engine’ socks, just 3 inches from her face, and the chubby little index finger poking her in the ribs.
The air was thick with dust as Betsy’s neighbours rummaged through the clutter in the fusty bungalow. They ignored the dreary sandwiches and orange squash on the kitchen table.
Around the world it’s Mental Health Day today (or yesterday for us Aussies!) and where I live in QLD, it’s mental health week. I believe depression, anxiety and other mental health conditions are a a bigger part of many people’s lives than we know or can even fathom. Motherhood in particular can be an emotionally draining rollercoaster at times and many of us can suffer in silence for years, believing that no-one understands or could ever help us out of the dark abyss that threatens to steal every moment that was meant for joy. But there are people who understand, those who have been there…
I’ve never liked my hands. They’re not elegant, or feminine, or what any girl would wish her hands to be. Palming a basketball wasn’t that amazing when it didn’t transfer to the agile footwork needed to keep me off the bench.
A thought-provoking tale about ignorance versus insight and the often underestimated emotional maturity of a child.
A touching and emotionally raw story based on true events.
A sweet tale of memories and nostalgia.
A sentimental tale about the joys of grandparent duties.