On the first Saturday of August, I woke up to a perfectly sunny sky and the news that my vibrant, youthful dad had abruptly passed away of a heart attack in the middle of his kitchen. There are lots of things to be said about the days immediately following that, but to put it lightly, it was the worst. There was nothing I could do to bring my dad back no matter how much I wished for it, and on top of it, I suddenly developed a slew of new responsibilities I never knew existed. As his only child, I was the final decision-maker for everything that happened to his remains, his personal possessions and the plans for his funeral. Luckily for me, several family members stepped in to help me out, but most every plan or legal document needed my signature to move forward, and that was scary. It was like a dark comedy film come to life. Keep reading »
Mother’s Day is when advertising distills motherhood down to home-cooked brunch, a bracelet, or a fragrant bouquet. But for far too many people, the relationship with their mom is a complicated one. Not all mothers have been nurturing and caring; not all daughters and sons have overcome the trauma of their childhoods as adults. There can be a lot of love in a mother-child relationship, but also a deep well of pain. That’s why The End Of Eve: A Memoir, by Ariel Gore, is the perfect antidote to Mother’s Day.
Several years ago, Gore, who is the editor of Hip Mama magazine, was happily in a relationship with her partner and raising a college-aged daughter and a toddler son, when she got some news. Her narcissistic, emotionally abusive mother, Eve, announced she had cancer.
So, Gore and her family picked up their lives and moved to spend the last couple of years caring for Eve — who, in turn, made everyone’s lives difficult in every possible way, like reporting Gore and her partner to Child Protective Services for (nonexistent) child abuse. But Gore was dedicated to both caring for her sick mom and trying to keep her relationship with her girlfriend together.
As a memoirist, Ariel Gore is gifted: she is able to tell a heartbreaking story of illness and betrayal with the perfect mix of respect, humor and irreverence. I called Gore at home to talk about The End Of Eve, which I absolutely devoured. Our conversation is after the jump!
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This piece was republished with permission from Role/Reboot.
Wednesday morning, 7a.m., the radio alarm blaring. Keep your eyes closed. Don’t move, because you have miraculously woken up in your old life.
The bed’s warm, your husband’s snoring next to you. Only the snore is more of a low whine, accompanied by a rough pawing against your back. The dogs, nudging you to get up. Your brain, moving slowly, registers this as a logic puzzle. If you’ve gone back in time, and your husband is still here, the dogs can’t fit on the bed, and the alarm is set to beep.
The dogs do fit on the bed, and the alarm is set to radio, therefore he’s dead and time is linear after all.
Your mind veers toward the surreal these days. This person who was Here is Gone, and it’s not much of a leap to think other seemingly impossible things may occur. But there’s no time to delve into that, the dogs need to get outside; you’ve got to be at work at 8:15. Keep reading »
After a relationship ends, you prepare yourself for hard nights missing the other person. Your friends comfort you by telling you someone else out there is even better for you, and that happiness is just around the corner. But no one prepares you for the loss of the people who come with the breakup; the innocent bystanders left in the dust. What happens to them? Friendships end and family ties are severed, all with the understanding that it would make things easier. But does it?
Last night, my sister called to tell me that my ex-boyfriend’s mother passed away— a woman who I was very fond of and close to for the more than three years I dated her son, Pete.* Keep reading »
I am the quiet, depressed one who is stabbed to death, but returns from the grave to seek my revenge — which sounds about right. No one’s going to stab me to death and get away with it! You? (See larger image here.) [Funny Junk]