Liner Notes 3/27

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Cooper had a stroke in the kitchen last Tuesday and then a second stroke in the car on our way to the vet and that's when everything fell apart. I had been holding it together until then, or so I thought, and then I lost it. I lost every ounce of dignity and "fuck that, man!" attitude and became fetal and impossible to console.

Cooper spent the day at the vet and I don't want to talk about next steps because I have no fucking clue how to be all no worries sunshine person about a dying animal. I've had Cooper since I was twenty. I don't remember life without him and certainly don't want to. He's like an appendage at this point, but he's also in pain. And I don't want to hurt him. I want to keep him alive as long as I can but I don't want to hurt him.

I was so exhausted last week trying to respond to people and not be pissed off, to mourn and explain to the kids what was happening - to figure out what our next steps were, to hold babies down so they could get their shots, to carry on... to listen, to ignore, to yell at things and Hal for not being more upset and everyone and everything and LEAVE ME ALONE I JUST WANT TO BE ALONE BUT EVERYONE IS ASKING FOR SHIT AND WANTS TO BE PICKED UP WHAT THE FUCK NOT NOW OKAY FINE I LOVE YOU. 
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It's funny because last week was a repeat offender in the shit department and yet, as I was sorting through all of these photos, I couldn't see any of that. And then I was like, "well, fuck me. Maybe my photos do seem staged? Because last week looks amazing but it was actually totally horrible. Last week was a mess of tangled necklaces."
... but not completely. 
I guess that's what I wanted to write about today. The fact that there are things nobody can control and that there are days and weeks and moments that feel completely impossible to ride - to accept - to understand and that beyond them, there are other things. There are moments. And moments are everything. They are bigger, even than the story. There are worlds away from pain and anger, just across the table. 

I wanted to punch things last week and I did. I punched the floor. I punched a pillow. I had a panic attack in front of my babies while Hal was with the big kids at swimming lessons because Revi would not stop throwing garbanzo beans and I didn't understand why.

I tried to explain to the kids what was happening with Cooper and became a belligerent person even though I know that was the absolute worst thing I could be.

I failed.

I stuttered.

I was late to pick Archer up from school. He was upset.

I was late to drop Archer off at school. The school called.

But the world continued to spin and children continued to eat and sleep and go to their eighteen month check ups and bathe and brush teeth and get dressed and live and laugh and play house and drag each other around in wagons and upward and onward Spring Break, whooo!!!
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And that's just it.

That's just it?

There are moments of beauty and goodness everywhere and they are happening simultaneously. They are happening during the worst weeks even though everything feels terrible. Even though you think, everything is terrible... everything is the worst. I will never understand anything ever. 


When you have kids you're afraid they will see you as who you truly are. You're afraid they will see you crying because of the dog and that they will cry, too. You're afraid they'll see you angry and become angry, too. That you will fail them because you're a complete mess of a crazy person. Because you sneak out for cigarettes when they're sleeping and you curse and you overreact to things you shouldn't react to. You're afraid that your tears will make them feel out of control. Because they are your children and if you can't hold it together how can you possibly expect them to?

You're supposed to be the rock.

And when you're not...

Then what?

What happens when you're not the rock?

And then they surprise you. They surprise you because they don't cry when you cry. Your son puts his hand on your shoulder and says, "Mom. It's okay. Cooper's had a long life" and your daughter will ask if she can draw him a picture and suddenly you're sitting there and the people you are supposed to console are consoling you. And you have a picture on your lap of a rainbow wearing a crown.
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And you needed this. You needed them. You needed this moment of sadness with them coming to your aid. They are your children and you're supposed to protect them but sometimes they protect you. They protect each other and they protect themselves and they protect you.
IMG_7344 IMG_7345 IMG_7346 IMG_7347 Spring Break, whoo.