Twig is in the window, chasing a fly. oh, she just ate it. good! we’ll need her fly-catching skills come summer time.
i was at Sondra’s place last night, chopping up a placenta with a pair of kitchen scissors. peeling it back from the membrane, examining all the sinews and huge blood vessels that have grown a baby boy for the past nine months. its not just one piece – it comes off its membrane is clumps looking like muffin tops of meat. its not like any meat I’ve seen before, spongy, grey-red with big cherry-black clots in it. firm and slippery. it goes into the dehydrator so the momma can consume it all over again, recycling those nutrients back into her body. Sondra has one wing down, and since shes not left handed i had to be her hands.
placentas smell like periods. musty, earthy, like metal. they don’t smell like raw meat. they just smell like blood. its a little queasy if you really pay attention to the smell. i have an apron, gloves, theres sterile pads everywhere, a bucket of bleach for the utensils. and i look up and say “this feels illegal.”
Sondra is a counselor, and i have definitely abused her services many times before. i know i can unload on her and she’ll know exactly how to listen. i told her, with my hands in gloves and covered in someone else blood, “i haven’t been able to relax in two days” she nodded and said we would sit together for a bit after the placenta was finished before i went home.
placenta chopped into tiny pieces and put in the dehydrator. clean up the bloody pads, gloves and cloths. we put the dehydrator in a different room and close the door, open the window. its going to smell really bad for 16 hours.
Sondra calls me over to sit with her at the little table near the window where theres a vase of deep purple tulips and its bright and theres a breeze and it doesn’t smell like placenta. I’m already crying before I cross the room to sit with her, which I didn’t expect. she waits calmly for me to go join her, pushing towards me the box of tissues. she puts on her counselor hat and facilitates me sitting still and digging through all the crap.
i just feel like i’ve reached my limit right now of what i can handle. chores, children, a part-time job that happens at odd hours so it breaks up my day into weird chunks, never knowing if i can count on getting enough sleep, not knowing if Jim is going to up and move us to a different country because he can’t get his shit together and decide if he’s going to finish up his PhD, which means i dont know where or if the girls are going to school next year, or where I’ll be able to find work, or even if its worth me getting invested in building my business here in Toronto at all. I’m tired of waiting for him to decide what to do. playing videogames instead of doing job applications. pouring everything into this momma who just had her boy and is waaaay to over attached to me because she doesn’t have anyone else. cordelia has been a huge shit recently, because shes picking up on all the conflict going on. shes just screaming and crying all the time, which is what i would like to be doing. i am not getting along with her that well recently. blaze is reflecting back my energy in different ways, but i can see its disrupting her as well. i have no relationship right now with that other guy who lives here. i put the girls to bed, then i go to bed. I’m asleep before he turns up usually. i’m going to bed earlier and earlier and i still feel like i cant get enough sleep.
the first thing i did yesterday morning was drive all over the place downtown, picking up my clients other suitcase of baby stuff and taking it back to the hospital for her. IN RUSH HOUR. do you know how completely vile and unpleasant it is to drive in the heart of Toronto at 9 in the morning? and to have that be the first thing you do in your day? most of the streets you are not allowed to turn left OR right on. so what happens is that you are on the road even longer than you would have been in the first place. how is that helping traffic? i got home just in time to trade places with jim – i get home, he goes downtown for a meeting. Cordelia starts screaming and crying. the best i can manage is to throw a plate of food at them, turn on a show AGAIN, and try to go hide somewhere. Jim comes home in just enough time for me to put my shoes on and go teach.
i am running out of time now, i need to go clean up before Bernie arrives.
Twiggy has just realized that if she slides her claws across the glass in the window, it makes a sound her wild ancestor cat instincts really find interesting.