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A Mother at Twilight

As told to Riva Pomerantz

This happy, loving, playful puppy is my son. Drawn to the magic of his singular charm, we laugh and bask in the sunlight of his twinkling eyes. This writhing, gnawing dragon is my son. Slashing, smashing, leaving a trail of blood and tears behind, he rips through heart and home.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

split picture of childThis happy, loving, playful puppy is my son. Drawn to the magic of his singular charm, we laugh and bask in the sunlight of his twinkling eyes. His imagination knows no bounds; his antics are a daily delight. This child pets rabbits with the gentlest touch, he quiets babies with his silken voice. He shares his snacks with glee, bestows a loving kiss on me. This angel is my child. And I cherish him.

This writhing, gnawing dragon is my son. Slashing, smashing, leaving a trail of blood and tears behind, he rips through heart and home. There is no stopping the unbridled rage. There are no words large enough to plumb the depths of the torrential pain. His pain. My pain. I hold the shaking, aching body, my breath coming in small, stiff gasps. He breaks free now, and plunges. A sharp kick to my leg. Spittle stains my face. His teeth reach for my arm. This monster is my child. And I mourn him.

How could this be? Where has he gone? That sweet, cuddled, coddled child who I carried and raised, who I held for long nights and sang to gently. Where has he gone? Where have we gone wrong? I kissed his bruises, I read him books, I never hit and seldom yelled. I gave to him, again and again from the wellspring of my love. Where have those vast deposits of love gone? Aren’t they supposed to be preserved forever, forming a solid, stable, joyous foundation? Isn’t there a Law about love, like Conservation of Energy? That once instilled, it lasts forever?

My aching musings laugh at me shamelessly. Laws of love? they snort, then guffaw. For that oft-invested love seems to have all but eroded in the frigid chill of stormy blasts. I cower now in fear, shrink from this child I don’t know anymore.

 

 

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