Showing posts with the label Chapters

What Happens When the Fat Lady Sings--Part I: Journeys (Chapter 4)

Journeys Nicole’s latest letter arrives just a few days before Sheldon and I leave for Sioux City. How does she expect me to answer? I just don’t understand her, this brown-eyed child of mine, this child who has demanded her independence from day one. From a distance, you see this lovely 20-year-old girl, with long black hair, long legs, slim body. When she sashays into a room, she makes an entrance. Heads turn. Men drool. Women round up their men and cling to them. You wonder how she slides through life so effortlessly. But when you meet her up close, you notice that her eyes are glazed, her hair not quite clean, her teeth gray, her skin bad, her mind dulled from years of drug and alcohol abuse. Not the willful child who struggled out of my body. Read more here .

What Happens When the Fat Lady Sings: Part I--Journeys (Chapter 3)

Journeys --------------------------- We know a thing by its opposite corollary; --------------------------- hot by having experienced cold; --------------------------- good, by having decided what is bad; --------------------------- love by hate. ---------------------- ---------------------------------- -- Sylvia Plath (Music. Theme to “The Twilight Zone.” Spotlight, beginning as a pinpoint of light and broadening into a tight circle of light, comes up. Samantha , the fat woman, about 40, vivid red hair falling to her waist, steps into the spotlight. She wears summer clothes: a Prussian Blue knit top, white shorts, scruffy sandals. A striking woman, she stands straight and places her arms akimbo. Spotlight broadens to encompass the entire stage, which is bare, except downstage left: a car, a red Jetta, obviously well-used, is parked, its trunk open. Several suitcases, duffel bags, etc. are stacked behind the car. Music fades.) Samantha: I begin my journey alone. A journey that begins

What Happens When the Fat Lady Sings: Prologue--"My Other" (Chapter 2)

My Other The acceptance letter and the invitation to the family reunion arrive on the same day, an unseasonably hot day in late April. My past and my proposed future stuffed into the mailbox, a tiny dark space, pulling me in different directions. I’ve been dreading this invitation, knowing it would be arriving soon. Now that the card, a sentimental thing with a collage of mothers, fathers, and children, is in my hand, I’m almost relieved that the waiting is over, and, yet, those echoes draw me in... WHO: The Mallorys, Bacons, O’Flahertys, etc. WHO: Danny O’Flaherty! WHAT: Family Reunion. WHAT: Command performance. Be there. WHEN: June 20, 1990, from 10:30 a.m. to ???? WHEN: From the beginning of your existence to ???? WHERE: The Lake. WHERE: Wherever you go, wherever you live. COST: A favorite dish, plus $25.00 per couple, $7.50 per child, to help defray the cost of renting The Northwest Quadrant of the Winnehaha Pavilion. COST: More than you’ll EVER be able to afford. RSVP: Sally Mill

What Happens When the Fat Lady Sings: Prologue--"My Other" (Chapter 1)

My Other I first became aware of my fat when I was two. Yes, I think that awareness came first, that moment when a blob of fat jiggled into memory, unblocking Jungian canals of prehistory. It was only after fat-consciousness that I became aware of me as an entity in and of itself. In an instant, I went from nothingness to a wiggling amoeba to a suddenly complete human being sitting on a horse on a merry-go-round. My breath caught me by surprise, almost as if someone had jumped from behind and frightened me into existence. Now, what? Colors, sounds, smells, touch, and taste flooding my body. Feelings– wild and random and terrifying, like a sea of voices screaming in tongues, pushing me under. I can’t breathe! Then, something–someone?–moving through the canals of my brain– organizing, filing, and deleting. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.....AIR! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh...! I wasn’t feeling dizzy as the merry-go-round spun around and my horse pumped up and down, like a wave ebbing and flowing and ebbing and f

Memoir Madness: Driven to Involuntary Commitment