Friday, January 24, 2020

Stroller Landmine

August 2018

It’s 6:35 p.m. Early for your bedtime, but you’re tired. You gave a big yawn while Mama was feeding you. You’re rubbing your eyes and acting sluggishly, so Mama tried to lull you to sleep by holding and rocking you on the bed while giving you lechita from a bottle but you stubbornly shook it off. She got frustrated. I offered to take you for a walk. After strapping you in the stroller, you and me head out the door.

It’s August so the sun is still bright. We circle the block around your abuelitos’ house but you keep sitting forward in your seat; I can tell by feeling the weight shift in the stroller, by peeking through the canopy’s ventilation window. I stop and kneel next to you. I look into your eyes and gently push you back and caress your forehead. Relax, I say to you in Spanish, and we continue on. Not a minute later, you begin to lean forward again, peering out at the suburban neighborhood. As we turn the corner back onto the street your abuelitos live on, I sigh with frustration.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

My Dying Wishes

Written April 3, 2005 (at age 25)


This should be pretty simple: if doctors—especially court-appointed ones (if it were ever to come to that)—find that I am cognizant and mentally capable of making rational decisions for myself, than allow me to make whatever decisions I want with my life. If I’m found to be in a state where I am not conscious and able to make coherent decisions, where my life can only be prolonged with the use of breathing or feeding machines and there is no chance of recovery, then I do not want to be kept alive. I strongly believe this is not true living, so I’d rather join the dead.

I am largely indifferent about my remains (because, you know, I’d be dead). Since my parents brought me into this world, they have every right to bury and mourn my death in whichever way they see fit. If my parents are not alive to make this decision, I give my sister, Mariana, the right to take care of my remains. If she is not available for this, then next in line would be my sister, Carmen. From there, fuck, let anyone who comes forward with the desire to take care of my carcass have the power (no necrophiliacs, though!)

Some tips, though, as to how I’d like my remains to be disposed of: