the meeting

in the meeting
she tells me about how 
i should be doing
this and that with my son
and every night just five minutes
that's all she asks
this woman is young
and professional with a quiet voice
but i don't feel quiet
i feel like a pressure cooker 
like the bubbles inside me
are stronger than my skin
i know she doesn't have kids
but don't other parents tell her?
doesn't she know what it's like
you pull out the set task
and the tears
and the head shaking
and "No! I don't want to!"
doesn't she know?
what if it's just me
just me being a bad Mum
how would i know?
i go home with the kids
and cook tea and read stories
and clean teeth
and i talk to him
not about that
not in front of them
although inside 
i'm still all frothy
with bubbles of pressure
and my eyes are aching with it
as i kiss my little ones
and tuck them in
and walk out to tell 
him about my day
but i can't
because the landslide
has begun
the landslide of bubbles
oozing and sobbing
out of me
all the way up from my toes
as i let out 
how i'm not doing it
what the therapist says
i'm not doing it well enough
and the therapist can tell
and because of me
our son will always struggle
and i don't know
how to be better
and he holds my shoulders
and looks into my eyes
and waits
so calmly for me
to see a whole new reasoning
laid out like a red carpet
laid out in his words
neatly as bricks

at the next meeting
he is there
calm as the boulder
that no landslide could budge.

10 thoughts on “the meeting

  1. God, this is so beautiful.

    I remember when looking after my mum. She had a plan for getting out of a situation she and I hated being in… a plan for us to fight back at the world.
    One of the health visitors, who looked about 12, explained to this incredible woman who had raised me through a gazillion anxieties, who had survived family traumas, wartime bombing raids on her country, etc…
    well basically, this fresh-faced health visitor tore her plans to shreds.
    Since then, I have seen similar things happen more times than I can count.

    And I have seen people who, despite all the glib, prescriptive, perceived-wisdom BS thrown at them, have made the world feel more human, simply by being something you can’t see through glib, prescriptive lenses.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. brilliant poem: you capture your inner torment well; what I really like is the portrayal of your partner, showing how important it is to have someone strong and supportive beside you; you are indeed fortunate 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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