All in Death


On the day she was going to be buried they opened her casket so people could say their goodbyes. I went up and looked inside. It was her but her eyes were sunken in. I had made her like a friendship bracelet and I put it on her hand. It was so cold.  It was at that moment that I realized she was really gone.


I grew up up on this road. Today is the anniversary of my mother’s death. I only have five memories of her and one of them is walking up and down this road, picking flowers


My husband tried to keep me from going in the house and I just about knocked him down getting in there. My son was laying on the sofa. My son had beautiful blue eyes and of course you die with your eyes open and that’s all I saw. 


I grew up on a dairy farm in a place called God’s Thumbprint. That’s actually where I’m hiking back to. I have some health issues. I’ve been diagnosed with Leukemia.


There’s an old adage that says, you don’t know what you’ve got til you lose it.” I always knew I had a good husband but I always thought he depended on me more than I depended on him. That was the thing that was so surprising because I found out that wasn’t true.


In 1990, I was working on a three year contract as a dancer, in Germany. I was about to go on stage when I got the call that my mom only had two weeks to live. She had full blown AIDS. 


There was something that always bothered my mother about me. She never really had love for me and I wound up in the streets at 14.


By the time they found me, my mom had already passed away and been cremated. I never really got to tell my mom that I was sorry. 


I went home for the funeral and there was a letter that my daughter had never mailed to me. She had written it 3 days before she died. It said, “Mom, if something happens to me, know that I still love you. I just want you to change your life. Don’t do no more prostitution or drugs." 


He died in 2006. It’s been a while but I still think about him cause it was the happiest time of my life. I wish he was here right now. I really did love the guy. I did. After all these years, I still love him.


My mom passed when I was 9. She was really sick, She had been addicted to crack cocaine, but she got her life together. The last three years of her life, she spent with us, clean.


My dad woke me up on the 28th of April and said, “we got to take your mom to the hospital cause she’s dead.” ... I walk out and she’s slumped over on her futon with a burnt out cigarette in her hand. Next thing I know, I’m riding home with her ashes.


I got diagnosed with cancer and I got diagnosed with heart failure and liver failure. My mom lost my little sister when I was 16 so… this is a big change. I don’t want to go. I know the man might say I only got 9 months but the Lord is the only one who can tell me when it’s my time. 


I learned how to prostitute at a very young age. I was 16. It was bad, but you learn how to work it, honey. I got my teeth veneered… I did a lot. I worked it.


I think the prostitution for me is, like, more of an addiction because I feel like somebody loves me. I know I’m not being loved but I’ve already told myself, for that 2 minutes, I’m being loved.


 this guy grabbed me from behind, smothered me and when I fell, I hit my eye on a bottle. Glass went in my eye. I went to the hospital and the doctor gave me a shot, bandaged it and told me to put ice on it for three days.


You know what they say about females, who have dad issues, when they don’t have a father figure.  They are always looking for a man, for that love. It’s very true.


But, when I found my mom deceased, in her bed, January the 8th of 2011, that’s when a “fuck it” attitude just came over me. I was just like, OK, I’m super woman. I can do anything I want to do.