I was carried once on my Father’s shoulders. He was a tall man, a handsome man, and a giant in my eyes before I learned better. I only remember it ever having occurred, my riding high on his shoulders, once. Perhaps it happened more, but if it did, the memories are lost to me.
I don’t remember my mother ever carrying me. Even though I was in love with her long black hair and the way she twirled it around her fingers, the softness of her stomach, the comfort of her breasts…I do not remember her ever carrying me. Perhaps she did, certainly she must have, but if she did, the memories are lost to me.
My husband, no longer my husband, carried me once. Actually I believe it was twice and always in the water. Please don’t think it was because I was too heavy. No, it just so happened he was too weak. He may have carried me more but he never did. That I am certain of.
As for me, I have carried a lot. Guilt, remorse, anger, hatred, love…so much love, all the love that can be contained in three children, above all in my three children, but not just in three children. I’ve carried it in countless children I’ve taught, in the dogs at the kennel I once cared for, in the few friendships I’ve held, in the father that once carried me and the mother that never did and even, yes even, in the husband who is no longer the husband who was too weak to carry me.