The Pet Diaries, part 1

The Pet Diaries, part 1

It’s a sunny wednesday and thunder is in the air.

Little boys run around the yard hoping to find a mouse, a bee or a beetle: since a dog is forbidden, they must find other pets.

Those pets rarely live longer then 2 days.

Huddling together they admire a worm.
I cringe and take a step back, relieved to be sent to find a suitable house for the worm (pet houses are destroyed almost as fast as their inhabitants decease.)

Now the hunt for worm food is on. I am asked for my expert opinion on worm food, so I Google it.
A rainworm? It eats dirt.This sets of a round of awed, grossed out exclamations.

IT EATS DIRT AND POOPS IT OUT.

It is the stuff little boys live for. Who needs a dog when you can have a snakish, blubbery creature that eats dirt, poops it out and which you can cut in two without killing it?

Their life is full.

I stand inside, watching them through the window so I don’t have to stifle my giggles.

The scent of the rain that is to come swirls through the summer air, mixing the joy of little boys’ laughter and the smell of a summer evening like a seasoned chef, fixing it as a memory in my head.

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A trip to Mars

They almost run me over in their enthusiasm when they come to give me a hug.

I hug them back, I think they’re sweet.

They run down the stairs like a troop of wild elephants and the love cools down. Or pauses. Or does the love just get irritated for a second?

I don’t think I should be irritated as I walk downstairs, irritated. I am an elephant, too. An elephant who closes the door quite loudly.

They want oatmeal and I want coffee and quiet but well…in that case I should not have taken three boys. And I would rather have those three boys.

But I also want coffee now. And quiet.

It is 9 o’clock in the morning and there are still many hours in this day. With no quiet.

The sound moves outside.

I sit inside with my quiet. We are good friends.

The sound comes inside again. If I don’t want to come out side and fly to Mars?

Spaceships make a lot of noise, but sure, I’d love to go along to Mars. One simply doesn’t throw away a chance like that.

(The spaceship outside did not get photographed, but we did, naturally, also have […]

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finding and seeking and being

I’m always looking for something.

I don’t quite know what it is.

Something.

Something I want to do.

Someone I long to be. She flees away from me, as if she thinks I’m not ready yet. Or, knowing me, she’s just teasing me.

I keep on looking, and in the meantime I just am.

He looks for me. A worn out knit blanket and a teddy bear that is losing his fur travel with him. He knows very well what he wants.

Me.

He couldn’t care less that I should be peeling carrots and crying over onions.

I sit down with him on my lap and he’s quite willing to share me with my book. He found me.

I hold him tight and his hair smells like summer and sunshine.

I inhale the smell like I’m an addict, because that’s what I am. This is me. I am just a mama kissing a sandy head of hair.

The head dives away under my chin. I slowly turn my head towards my book.

We sit, we are. |

Being might just be the most important thing you can do.

And so we sit, being important, with sand between our […]

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Acceptable and unacceptable blood

“Do it yourself”, I say.

“Just go play.”

I wish he were big and independent already.

“Quit whining.” “Don’t be such a wimp.” “Blood isn’t that bad. That will heal nicely.”

I think my empathy and worrying mother’s heart are hard to find.

But there they are:

Someone hurts his heart. Deep down I feel a raging hurricane coming up, aimed at the cause of his sadness.

Blood that seeps out of your skin? You’ll be fine.

Blood seeping out of your heart? That’s serious business we’re talking about.

I want to hold him close. As if I can stop all the pain this world can give from touching him. As if I can protect him this way.

Still, I force myself to loosen my arms, pushing him out into the wide world every time again.

I feel my eyebrows wrinkle up with worry, feeling his pain deep within me.

All the pain I have ever felt comes floating up like black oil in clear water. Am I worrying about his pain or mine now?

My eyes follow him as he goes on, each step taking him a little farther into a part of the world. Without me.

Because […]

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The last hour of this day

The day has slipped into the night a long time ago.

Children’s sweaty bodies are draped across their beds. Miniature chests move up and down, gently letting air in and out and the little mouths open up halfway to let it all happen a little more conveniently.

Behind closed eyelids little boys awaken in another world, slaying dragons and flying over roofs.

Beside me lies their dad, in whom I can see little pieces from all of them. His labored breathing could almost be called snoring and his mouth opens just like theirs.

I tiptoe down the stairs to close the door and can’t resist going outside for just a few minutes.

To lie down on the damp grass and stare into the night sky. The stars are staring right back.

They can already see the day of tomorrow coming. Far, far away over the horizon. I beg them to keep it at bay for just a few more hours, but all they do is stare back at me wordlessly.

The cool night flows around me, crawling up my skin as if it’s a paint brush just dipped in goosebump-paint.

I don’t want to go to sleep yet. I want […]

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what I need

I’m paid with a price. But He’ll relinquish me if I want to be relinquished. I can walk away and He’ll let me go.

I don’t, because I want to be bought. I want to be bought back and saved and made into me.

The me He had in mind when He was creating my soul.

Because I don’t always know who I am, and what I should do. I don’t always know who I want to be, and what I want to do. And sometimes I am who I don’t want to be and I do what I don’t want to do, not knowing how to stop.

But the one who made me and bought me when I fell into the wrong hands, He knows how to lead me back to the one I should be.

He holds me close to His heart, so close I can hear it beating, and shows me who I can be.

I stay and I trust and I feel the water wash of the grime I didn’t even know was there.

For a second, it feels like He is the cause of the dirt washing up. I consider just turning my […]

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Never alone

For 10 days, purple flowers blanketed the forest floor in the Hallerbos, enchanting thousands of people.

The bluebells do it every year again: prepare all year, to give everyone a peek into perfection for just a few days. They are fragile, vulnerable, and all over the place.

If someone steps on the flowers, they never recover. But they’ll leave their seeds. If uncaring shoes walk on the bare forest floor more then 25 times, the seeds have no chance to take root. The surrounding flowers take years and then some, to encroach on the empty spot and fill it up again.

It can be hard to get back up when all life seems to do is knock you down. Again. And again. And again.

It can seem like it isn’t worth it, when people keep walking over you like you aren’t even there.

When life drags you down with yet another wave, leaving you in the forgotten depths of the ocean.

It’s the most cliche thing to say… But you’re never alone.

Even in the depths of despair or in the black numbness that envelops you, making you oblivious to despair and joy and any feelings at […]

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