Tag Archives: fears

The One After Me

I will pass it onto another generation. My daughter will have an eating disorder in her teens, because of something I said. Then she contemplate suicide, and have to see a counselor, and I’ll be helpless. I was so close. She’ll be closer. Her avalanche is worse. Her building is taller. Her car won’t hesitate to swerve. Her knives a bit less scary. Her bathtub waters a bit safer. Her pill bottles on a lower shelf. I can’t do that to another human being. I can’t create something knowing the pain I’ll pass down. I can’t.
I can try. But it won’t do any good. I’ll have to watch all my mistakes go down a line, in order, knowing it’s my fault. I could have prevented it. I can’t. “Oh you could try.” He’ll say. “I’m sure it won’t be that bad.” What are the odds I’ll have a daughter stronger than me? I can’t create something to die. I don’t love me enough to duplicate what I’ve been through. I’ve seen it pass already, grandma, to mom, to me. I can stop it with me. That’s my choice. Not yours.

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If I Wrote It Down

All the fears
Noted, logged, cataloged
At the end of my book
Under the back-cover flap
I’ve tallied them up.
Two years, twenty seven days
Spent worrying about meals.
Three thousand four hundred and two
Thoughts on car wrecks.
Eight hundred minutes
Clutching at the fear of heights.
I wrote them all down.
I can see how I spent my whole life.
Accounted for in little terrors.