Life Among the Never-Winged

Once upon a time I was writing a book called, "Just Another Love Letter", about angels behaving badly. Now I just quietly ask myself each day, "What the hell am I doing?"

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Location: The Rocky Mountain Empire, United States

My friends always knew I was going to hell. My only hope is that God likes good jokes and bad redheads.

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  • Thursday, April 05, 2007


    Please, feel free to continue the six-word stories. I'm glad eveybody's having so much fun with it!

    I was in a hurry, just there to pick up some white eggs and dye, some odds and ends, so I almost walked right past her.

    There was a small crowd; there always is when they're that age, and they always say the same things: How old are they? Aren't they cute! They're twins, aren't they?

    They ooh and they awww and they flatter and they are totally oblivious to the dark circles under the mother's eyes and her tight smile.

    She had a double stroller and a full shopping cart, turned backwards so she could pull it through the parking lot while pushing the stroller.

    This seldom works smoothly, if at all.

    One of the admirers, a woman I'd place in her fifties, remarked, “Oh, they're sound asleep, aren't they?”

    “They are now,” she answered quietly, followed by one of those half-smothered, desperate little sounds.

    “Hey,” I said, smiling. “How are you doing?”

    She looked at me. Her smile quavered. “I'm...” She stopped and looked down. The crowd dissipated. I felt myself blushing.

    “I know.” I said. “Can I take your cart for you?”

    “Um. Yeah. Thanks.”

    I followed her to her car. I talked to cover her tears. “I have twins too. It's hard right now for you, I know. Four months is rough. And you think you'll never sleep again--”

    “They take turns. One goes to sleep--”

    “And the other wakes up. Yup.”

    She wiped her eyes. We reached her minivan.

    “You get the babies in, I'll put the groceries in, ok?”

    “Thank you. Ok, yeah. Thank you.”

    “Sure sure sure! No problem!” I loaded the groceries into the back. The van still smelled new.

    She came around the back to load the second baby in the other side. “Thank you,” she said again.

    “No problem! Mothers-in-arms, right?”

    She came back after she put the second 'baby bucket' into the car seat base.

    “What did you say?” Her eyes were watering.

    “Mothers-in-arms.” I smiled at her.

    “More like mothers-in-not-enough-arms,” she said. And we both laughed, then kept laughing because for some reason right then it was the funniest thing anybody had ever said.

    And because when you laugh that hard, it's ok to be crying at the same time too.

    Labels: , ,

    22 people left me a love letter:

    Blogger Maggie wrote in a love letter...

    Wow, Nancy, that was so perfect. I don't know how many times this happened to me. And yes the babies are cute and yes you love that they get attention, but those days like you described. You feel invisible, tired, in need and no one thinks to notice you. You are a hero. She will remember you for sure. Hopefully you will bump into her at the grocery store again.

    Btw, this made me cry. Just because.

    6:40 AM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Schmoopie wrote in a love letter...

    You're a great one Pants!

    7:59 AM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger patches wrote in a love letter...

    You left that woman with one of the most wonderful feelings a person can have when faced with insurmountable obstacles...."Wow, she gets me."

    I can't wipe this stupid smile off my face.

    9:27 AM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger meno wrote in a love letter...

    It's great to learn from you what that woman really needed. Thank you for providing it for her. I'll bet that you helped her get through for a little while longer.

    11:13 AM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Lisa wrote in a love letter...

    Ya big jerk.
    You just made me cry like TWO little babies!
    It still feels like yesterday...
    But, no, they are talking like grown-ups about how best to position the flattened cardboard box on the stairs for maximum velocity...

    Still. That was the sweetest thing ever. Thank you for doing it, and thank you for sharing it with us.

    Also, I love your labels...heh...

    11:31 AM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Mona Buonanotte wrote in a love letter...

    Wow...this post made me teary. You are just amazing, y'know? Just

    1:55 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Anonymous Rudi wrote in a love letter...

    Twin time
    Mensch needed
    Nancy there

    2:55 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Scott from Oregon wrote in a love letter...

    Never let twin boys watch Three Stooges Reruns. EVER.

    You should have gotten her name...

    3:09 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Anonymous clowncar wrote in a love letter...

    I don't do heart-warming well, but that was pretty damn sweet. A little miracle of communication and connection. Good for you.

    Happy Esther.

    4:01 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Nancy Dancehall wrote in a love letter...

    You nailed it, Maggie. It's the same for all new moms. You love the attention your baby(ies) get, but you're just sooo exhausted. Moms need moms.

    Thanks, Schmoop. So are you. :-)

    And I hope she got some sleep too, Patches. :-)

    You've been there, Meno. Those first months are exhausting and lonely and downright scary sometimes.

    Thanks Lisa! :-) Wow. Mine go down the stairs on their tummies without the box. Which always makes me wonder why it doesn't hurt, since they're External Americans and all, know what I mean?

    Thanks, Mona. :-) Oh! I just remembered Poetry Friday! Um....

    Spring into
    the springs
    in Spring.

    Aw! you called me a mensch! Thanks, Rudi!

    Oh NEVER, Scott! Unless I'm watching them too. :-) Always preferred the Marx Brothers though. Harpo's dreamy.
    Normal things like getting names never occur to me. I'm socially autistic. Zero people skills.

    Oh I don't know, Clowncar. You wrote a heartwarming tale of a mom defending her kids against squirrels. ;-)

    Happy Esther.

    5:23 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger amusing wrote in a love letter...

    I love those moments when you know just what's needed. I once had a mom behind me at check out and her baby was making those noises. You know. The ones that start to make you anxious because you know just where they are going and that any minute your baby is going to start screaming and you will be in line at the grocery store and everyone will stare and you and think you are a horrible mother and do you leave your groceries but you've just spent all that time gathering them and besides, the freezer stuff will rot cuz you can't go put it all back and you feel the knot in your stomach start to clench and the tears start to come to your eyes and.....

    I let her cut in front of me and her sigh of relief was the biggest reward in the world for me.

    7:37 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Blogger Lynn wrote in a love letter...

    It's nice to have an angel watching over you...clearly you were hers.

    11:20 PM, April 06, 2007  
    Anonymous d-man wrote in a love letter...


    Twin cheerleaders, yes. ;)
    Twin babies, hell no! (I hope)
    I don't think I could
    at all...

    6:25 AM, April 07, 2007  
    Blogger Scott from Oregon wrote in a love letter...

    mother's with twins
    shared their pills.

    11:48 AM, April 07, 2007  
    Blogger Mother of Invention wrote in a love letter...

    How full circle to be helping another to whom you can really relate the whole experience. Having never been a mom, this has made me more cognizant of their side of the story. If it was local, you'll lkely run into her again.
    My sister had twins and was so overwhelmed, she hardly made it out of the house for 6 months, and the girls hardly ever made it out of their sleepers!

    HA! The word verif. was "mums"!!!

    5:35 AM, April 08, 2007  
    Blogger Stucco wrote in a love letter...

    When did the groping and tearing off of clothing start?

    6:51 PM, April 08, 2007  
    Blogger Nancy Dancehall wrote in a love letter...

    And those moments are all too infrequent with me, Amusing.

    Aw, thanks, Lynn. And thanks for stopping by. :-)

    You could cope, D-Man. :-)

    Heh. You can't stop, can you Scott? :-)

    I was glad I had chance to help her, MOI. Heh, the WV thing. Stuff like that happens around here all the time. Stick around. :-)

    When you went to bed and started dreaming, Stucco. ;-)

    7:52 PM, April 08, 2007  
    Blogger JustCallMeJo wrote in a love letter...

    Very cool, nancypants.

    3:00 AM, April 09, 2007  
    Anonymous Rudi wrote in a love letter...

    Stucco: You have to wait until just after the cheesy music begins. :-)

    12:35 PM, April 09, 2007  
    Blogger Esereth wrote in a love letter...

    I think it's hard for a blogger to describe something nice she did without sounding greedy for kudos. But this story, you sounded only empathetic and much more concerned with her than anything else. Really well-written.

    1:54 PM, April 09, 2007  
    Blogger Irrelephant wrote in a love letter...

    I used to believe in angels, Nancy. They were always white guys with perfect robes, golden halos, and huge snow-white wings, and they chilled with Jebus when they weren't cow-tipping in Montana. As I got older, I let go of those ideas about religion and Gawd and angels, and replaced them with the sure and certain knowledge that we make our own Heaven or Hell, both for ourselves and for others while we walk this earth.

    And sometimes, if we're very, very lucky, we can be someone else's angel for a little while.

    *carefully smoothing feathers over the Velcro straps that hold your huge, snow-white wings on* There. You look lovely.

    6:15 PM, April 09, 2007  
    Anonymous Rudi wrote in a love letter...

    "carefully smoothing feathers"


    7:34 PM, April 10, 2007  

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