My Name was Supposed to be Elizabeth Ann

— Stories from the Roads (Not) Taken

Home from the hospital, my daughter says, Why, Mom? 

The big things, yes. Fire and flood. Hypocrisy and hate. 

But that’s not what she means today. Today, she means the mystery of unintelligible suffering. 

When she was little, I knew all, healed all. Her growing stole my magic. Her growing made me mortal.

Now she is the healer. Now she knows more than I have ever seen or will. I hold her as she weeps and tells me of the woman she could not save.

Is she your first, I ask.

She shakes her head, steadies her voice. I’ve seen other people die.

Her words are rocks too heavy to lift. 

Instead, knowing it will not–cannot–suffice,

I say, I’ll make us pancakes for dinner. 

Blueberry, her favorite.


This is dedicated to my daughter, an RN and my superhero. You are my heart.

3 thoughts on “Comfort Food

  1. mariettashaw says:



  2. Peyton Ellas says:

    Good post. Very strong. You managed to pack a lot of different emotions in a very short piece. Well done.


Leave a Reply to mariettashaw Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: