Please Understand

By SaraGrace Griffin

 

To my mother

Who refuses to answer to “mom”

Because it’s too basic.

 

Who sends me Snapchats

Of my favorite tv shows,

A stick of cucumber deodorant

Still in front of my tv,

Late at night when she should sleep.

 

Who mails me hand-written letters every week

Along with gift cards from

Food Lion and Cracker Barrel and Dairy Queen

When she should save her money.

 

Who informs me of crises

That affect me and my friends

Gen-X in the Cape Fear River

Meningitis epidemics

Hurricane Irma updates

When I’m too numb to watch the news.

 

Who texts me good morning

And good night

And sometimes sends rolling puppy gifs

When I don’t respond.

 

Who constantly asks “Are you okay?”

On five different messaging services

When I’m busy or sick or empty.

 

Who cries every time

She can catch me on the phone.

 

Who begs me to come home

When there is a holiday.
.

.

.

I text you “lol”

When I actually do laugh out loud

At Shawn Spencer’s shenanigans

That illuminate my face

In the solitary darkness of my dorm.

 

I beg you not to send any more money

Or sneakily deposit it into my account

And say that you expect

Nothing in return.

 

I drink the contaminated water

After people who could unknowingly carry

Meningitis, my biggest fear.

I pay eleven cents more per gallon

Since I don’t fill up my tank before the storm

Like you told me to.

 

I don’t open your messages

Until I’m almost asleep

So I don’t have to respond

More than “goodnight love you too.”

 

I cry every time

I read your letters

 

And when I hang up

And after I leave you.

SaraGrace Griffin is a senior at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, double majoring in Creative Writing and Psychology in an attempt to comprehend their existence. They love traversing their native North Carolina backwoods and baby-talking to all dogs they encounter. Follow them on Twitter @born2blossom.