Learned To Let Go

My uncle, Henry, always says waves are unpredictable, like my mother. Her disappearance as he explains it or her abandonment as I describe it, still remains a mystery.

“That’s really been on my mind a lot lately,” I said.

“Get some coffee Matt,” Uncle Henry began.

His voice was deep and rough, it’s the sound of the ocean during a storm. He slid the glass door open and the cool air made me shiver. We took our coffee mugs outside on the deck that overlooks the Mendocino Coast, and watched the early morning fog drift over the water as it pulled away from the shore. Bo, his dog, stayed curled up in his bed by the fireplace.

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Orbiting The Question

A couple of things kept me from writing blog posts over the last few weeks. One is my DNA test. I had it done through Ancestry.com, after a lot of thought. Actually, what I really did was purchase the test then let it sit in a drawer for almost a year. And not because I forgot it. I just didn’t want to find out that my mom and stepfather were wrong.

When I was fifteen and feeling pretty smug about who I was, my folks broke the news that my biological cocktail wasn’t made in-house. They were in the middle of a nasty divorce, and I’m pretty sure my brother and I were being asked to choose sides. I chose my father’s side (and I use that term loosely) because we’d always been closer. He’d spent more time with me and accepted my emerging personality of follower and worshiper. It was many years later when I truly acknowledged the costs associated with that relationship. That is another story.

My mother did offer to name my biological father. She did offer a bridge over the chasm of reserve and divorce, but I was angry at the time and unwilling to allow a newcomer into my tiny circle of chaos. We left that subject behind us, like a condemned building, and never returned.

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A gold vein of routine

Tonight there was something soothing in the rhythmic hum of the dishwasher next door. I could hear it best from my bathroom, a tiny space with just enough room for a toilet and a bathtub. I sat there and listened for a moment, or two. Everything else melted away, and I felt my shoulders fall from their perch next to my ears. They’d been there all day. Continue reading “A gold vein of routine”