Musings on Curvitude

Posted on | May 13, 2010 | 11 Comments |

Today is 11 years since my mother’s suicide. I don’t feel up to saying anything new, but I did want to repost something I wrote a few years back.

I miss my mother’s body.

In our household skin was normal, and it wasn’t the slightest bit unusual to pee with the toilet door open, or to amble naked from bedroom to bathroom – not to mention from bedroom to the kitchen for a drink and back again! As a child, waking up in the morning the first thing I’d do would be to throw myself into bed with mum and dad, and they’d both be naked. (Sleeping without clothes always seemed perfectly sensible to me, and was something I took up myself after I turned fourteen. Pyjamas and nighties always felt right when I was younger, however. But never knickers… knickers were for daytime only!)

My mother has been dead for nearly eight years now, and I moved out of home two years before that. I miss a lot of things about her, but right now, as I was looking through the very interesting topless photographs on Jordan Matter’s site, I realise just how much I miss seeing her body.

I miss, as a teenager, sitting and talking to my mother while she was in the bath. She’d wash her hair and shave her legs, and we’d talk as she stepped out of the water, and I’d watch her dry and powder herself. I miss seeing the way her breasts drooped onto her chest, with their large aureole and perpetually pointy nipples a legacy of breast-feeding two children. Compared to me, her breasts were deeply interesting – my nipples are small and hard to coax out to play, and my aureole are a pale rose colour that match my lips. Hers, in contrast, were a dark colour that stood out against her skin, and the nipples pushed forward in a deep brown greeting that never failed to fascinate me.

I miss the dark birthmark on her shoulder; I miss the delicate rolls of fat on her back – two on each side of her spine (I had no back rolls then; now I have more than she does). I miss the solidity of her thighs and the thick keloided scar on one that she received as a teen herself when she smashed through a window when playing netball? hockey? I can’t remember and will never know, now.

I miss her double-chin, her slightly fleshy upper arms, her prominent hips with their comforting covering of flesh. I miss the pooch of her belly and her strong shoulders and the smell of her talc, her perfume, her deodorant. I miss raiding her closet and putting on her clothes and smelling how she smelled.

I have memories and photographs of my mother, and they are good things to have. But the sheer physical presence of her is gone. The conversations about masturbation and vibrators are never to be repeated (and I would have so many more things to say now, rather than being slightly embarrassed talking to my mum about such topics). Hugging her and feeling her body pressed against mine, not sexual but secure and safe and familiar and home, that’s all gone.

I miss my mother’s body. But there’s enough familiarity every time I see mine in the mirror that I know she is not forgotten.

From March 2007.

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11 Responses to “Musings on Curvitude”

  1. Britni TheVadgeWig
    May 13th, 2010 @ 10:08 pm

    Beautiful post. <3

    I find it interesting that in writing about your mom, even years after her death, you alternate between past and present tense.

    Also, my parents slept naked when I was a kid, too. It was normal to me. I still live with my parents, 20 years later, and they no longer sleep naked. Part of me is sad about that– I wonder if, as a 5/6/7-year-old, my parents slept naked because some sort of sexual spark was still there, and now they wear clothes because that's gone.

    If that is the case, I'm sad for them. And if that is the case, I hope me and my future partner never stop sleeping naked.

  2. Miss Magenta
    May 13th, 2010 @ 10:27 pm

    Death’s never easy, especially when it greets the one you love. My nan died 6 years ago and I was really depressed about it for a long time. I’m better now but I still miss her and her slices of wisdom and apple pie. Just remember she’s in a better place and always around as long as her memory’s kept alive. Stay strong.

    xo MM

  3. Aurore
    May 14th, 2010 @ 3:02 am

    I am sorry for your loss but this is a beautiful post celebrating your mother.


  4. Nzlg
    May 14th, 2010 @ 11:31 am

    **hugs** just hugs..

  5. Coy Pink
    May 14th, 2010 @ 1:58 pm

    I’m sorry about the loss of your mother. This post is just lovely. As the mother of two girls, this post touches me especially. I hope that they grow up and remember fondly these days I spend with them, just as you hold in your mind the beautiful memory of your mother.

  6. Dee
    May 14th, 2010 @ 1:08 pm

    Britni – I never even noticed the tense change (which I’m usually totally anal about). It’s a shame your parents have changed that. I hope Apollo and I continue to sleep naked, too.

    MM – I wouldn’t be here without strength. Especially after one kicker of a breakdown a year after her suicide! Thank you for your lovely comment, though.

    Aurore – Sometimes I can’t say anything better than something I’ve said before.

    Nzlg – *hugs* to you too, hon. Going to the munch tomorrow?

    xx Dee

  7. Dana
    May 14th, 2010 @ 3:37 pm

    *hugs* I have nothing clever to say. Thinking of you.

  8. Dee
    May 14th, 2010 @ 4:10 pm

    Coy Pink – There’s a lot I don’t miss about my mum, but a lot that I do. It’s good to remember, regardless.

    Dana – Thanks for the hugs, poppet :)

    xx Dee

  9. floatingmischeif
    May 14th, 2010 @ 4:19 pm

    This post moved me deeply when you first posted it and still does. Knowing the feeling of losing a mum( been 11 yrs for me too), big hugs to you.xxxx see you Saturday for a real hug.x

  10. Miss Serenity
    May 14th, 2010 @ 7:18 pm

    *loves and hugs*
    I hope you’re okay my darling xxxx

  11. Dee
    May 16th, 2010 @ 6:19 pm

    mischeif – It was lovely to see you yesterday, hon. *hugs*

    Miss S – I am okay, yes. Thank you for checking!

    xx Dee


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