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  • matrescence

    A friend visits with a basket in each hand, her twin sons. She feeds them, changes them, carries them, and lays them down with perfunctory attention. She says, Sometimes I think, “It’s been seven months! Where in the world is their mother?”

    —Sarah Manguso, 300 Arguments (Minneapolis: Graywolf Press, 2017)

    I love this quote. It speaks eloquently to the strange slow shift in identity that comes with mothering, with fathering—the sense that this new life is not your own, but belongs to someone else. It’s distressing, disorienting. And that sense can lead to enormous self-doubt and self-criticism

    And so I’m relieved to know that at last this disorientation is finally being taken seriously—that is to say, that it is being investigated by people who are not sleep-deprived, confused about who they are becoming, too interrupted to make sense of the experience and to hold onto the sense that they make of it. This piece on matrescence--the process of becoming a mother--by Alexandra Sacks, prior to the publication of her book this fall, is part of that exploration. 

     

  • beginning again

    Often we worry and wonder about which action to take. Will our actions produce results? Meaningful results? And will they take us to the place we think we want to go? In moments like this, when we are consumed by restless thoughts, it can be helpful to remember this:

    It is the action, not the fruit of the action, that's important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there'll be any fruit. But that doesn't mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no results. - Mohandas Gandhi.