Giving Myself to My Garden and Keeping Enough for Me
The thing my mom told me to do—“Save twenty percent for yourself. Never give one hundred percent to anyone.”—was not selfish after all. Not when thinking about my own survival.
Crisis Unicorn. Chicken + bee keeper. Author of a stroke memoir, Tell Me Everything You Don't Remember (Ecco/Harper Collins). Her short fiction and essays have appeared in ZYZZYVA, Guernica, The Rumpus, The New York Times, and BuzzFeed, among other publications. Her novel is forthcoming from Ecco / Harper Collins.
More by this author
By farming, I connect back to my own culture. To, pun intended, my roots. To what it means to be a child of immigrants and help things grow.
Bees do not attack—just as trauma survivors do not attack, but rather defend. She will not sting you unless she believes the colony’s life depends on her defense. Because when she stings you, she dies.
More in this series
The sixth sense, second sight, third eye. We are supposed to have both extra-accurate hearing and perfect pitch, more numerous and more acute taste buds, a finer touch, a bloodhound’s sense of smell.
Moving home to Newark has been a surreal experience because I have had to mourn places that once were, but are no longer.
Unwritten social rules might as well not exist for me. The only reason I can read them at all is because I’ve forced myself to learn them.