What comes up, what comes down

change of direction, by mark notari on Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons

It can’t have been more than a year? two? ago that one of the kids – should I put my money on Young J or Young A? – asked me how babies came out of me. I’m one of those “need-to-know” moms of boys. I didn’t feel like having the whole uterus talk because honestly, it was a weekend morning and they would have stopped listening in a millisecond. I give my kids books to learn that stuff.

So I made a grand sweeping hand gesture from my belly, downwards. “You came out” – whoosh! – “that way.”

The question may have been repeated once or twice more, and they dug the hand motions. End of story.

This morning I went back to my beloved exercise spot. I knew I wouldn’t be joining anyone in anything remotely strenuous – just some breathing, some foam rolling, stretching. I honestly spent most of the time talking – my latest type of workout – with two students there I’ve known for a while. They were learning about my new normal. I used the back massager a little. I drank water.

But even a low-calorie workout like that one serves to reorient your mental map. Back in the space where I have focused on the body before, my brain started thinking about my body again. I was talking to K after, who is going to help me with the rap song, and suddenly it hit me, the direction my thoughts were going. (Yes, I do know they are going in every direction.)

“My melanoma showed up on my back first, right? Then, it spread to my lungs. And now it has moved up to my head. IT IS COMING OUT THAT WAY, THROUGH THE HEAD!”

I don’t know if this is a scientific, metaphysical, or simply science fictional observation, but I’m going with it.

Everything good in my life has emerged from below, heading earthwards. This thing bedeviling me now, heading the other direction. Up, through my brain -which has gotten so offended at the attack it’s working overtime to compensate – and then out my red hair, and off into a filthy province of space, where it will stay, away from me, forever.

That will work.

As will other earthbound things, like our new four-month old neighbor, Onslow.


3 thoughts on “What comes up, what comes down

  1. This is the second time I have heard this name Onslow. The first time was in the British comedy, “Keeping up appearances”. So when are you getting a puppy? And your hypothesis that the melanoma is coming out of your head and into the space leaving you forever, sounds absolutely right and worthy of further deeper contemplation!


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