Months ago I was talking to a conservative person about some cold symptoms and when I asked if they had tested for Covid-19 they were like: no, and I’m not going to, because I don’t care.

I could write eighty million blog posts on how saddened and angered I was and continue to be about the psychology of “la la la la NOT TESTING” but my forever bafflement has to do with the lack of curiosity. I mean, even if you’ve spent the last few years screeching out your righteous indignation about having to briefly wear a diaper for your big crying baby face, are you truly not even a tiny bit interested in what the test stick says?

I guess it’s much easier to pretend that whether or not you have Covid doesn’t matter to you or anyone else, because ______. (The virus isn’t real, or it isn’t as serious as science says, or it’s all a giant conspiracy, or whatever it is these people believe.)

Whatever. I can’t make sense of the mentality because 1) I never voted for Trump, and 2) I myself am endlessly curious about my meat sack’s inner workings and if I could get a full-body MRI scan every single day I absolutely would.

I don’t think I’m paranoid or even remotely close to being a hypochondriac: I just want to know All the Things. Why has my lower left back area bothered me for years and now it seems like I can feel the same pain radiating from my left hip? What’s going on with my right elbow when I try and do a pushup, is there a reason it always feels briefly “locked” before working? Why do my knees SOUND like that, for chrissakes?

Where am I in the perimenopause process? How’s my bone density doing? Is my liver riddled with holes because of all the Advil I take? Do I have too much visceral fat surrounding my organs? Is my lost IUD okay just space-trashing its way around my withered uterus? Can we get a peek inside an artery to add some context to the worrying news that I have high cholesterol? How’s my bicuspid aortic valve doing, is it functioning perfectly fine as it’s presumably been all my life, or is my heart warranty finally running out?

If there was an easy OTC test for “you have a regular boring old cold,” I would take it. Why not? Then I would KNOW. Who doesn’t want to know? WHY WOULDN’T YOU WANT TO KNOW.


God, I’m glad the holidays are behind us. The entire month of December felt like an overwhelming series of to-do lists with a big anxiety-inducing family get-together at the end of it, which is to say I’m not sure I was able to soak up the spirit of the season this time around.

I felt this way last year, too. There are of course plenty of reasons why the holidays feel more stressful than they used to be (like, I don’t remember actively praying that no one brings up the they/them convo in years past) but I think what I’m really missing is the magic of younger kids at Christmastime.

Of course, I’m not really missing the grind of having littles during the holidays. I know I’m not the only one who succumbed to making whimsical chalkboard “bucket lists” that were really a burdensome parental deathmarch of festivity: we WILL make the hot chocolate, we WILL visit the photogenic tree farm, we WILL build a gingerbread house even though it’s the one and only winter holiday activity that’s even messier and more frustrating than carving pumpkins.

Do you know that parenting poem “The Last Time”? I’m not even going to link it because it makes me so weepy, if you want to do that to yourself you’re gonna have to do the googling. Anyway, the gist of it is that you never know when something is the last time — the last time you read to them in bed, the last time you hold their hand crossing the street, the last time you carry them in your arms.


Anyway: that’s what I think about too much during the holidays. All our last times. The echoing chasm between holiday expectations and holiday realities. The daunting task of simply being present, rather than caught up in what things should or should not be.


← Previous PageNext Page →