you thought I was silenced, but you thought wrong. lol.
I haven’t written a whole lot this past year. But I’ve kept up occasionally with a notebook. It helps.
The school year has been incredibly trying. But yesterday inspiration struck. And it was a slice. And it was Tuesday.
From hammocks comes a careful weaving of family stories. Stories I would love to hear when my extended family would get together. When we would all gather at my grandmother’s house, and commune. As the third youngest of ten children, my mother was one of the last in her family to have children. As such, I have many older cousins.
I love hearing stories not about my mom but about “Tia Mary.” As an aunt who would help her older sisters with the careful work of raising children. A glimpse of who she was before she met my father.
Daniel, an older cousin, loves to recount a story from when he was too young to remember. As an inconsolable toddler, my mother would wrap him in the hammock and rock him to ease his fussiness.
Everyone in the family loves to exaggerate the story. How there was blood, many stitches, gross child negligence of the highest order. My mother is insistent that he just tumbled to the ground, cried for a few minutes, and went right back to rocking happily on the hammock.
These stories swing back and forth into memory.
Much like facts: it has been years since I’ve seen Daniel, his brother, his sister. We don’t talk anymore—our own planets swinging in wide arcs, light-years from each other. Or the fact that he almost died of COVID. How he struggled to recover fully and swing back into life. The fact that he is considered a lucky person as other friends and family are not. So many others have not been so lucky. Hopefully, from time to time, their memory can swing back to us so we will not forget.