How Do You Keep Going?

Wait just a moment and don’t think,
“How is this going to work out?”
Only take a moment to breath before moving on.
 
So you’ve been here before and failed
A moment in the past doesn’t mean you will again.
You can do this, you must tell yourself.
Slap those doubts right out of your head.
 

Sometimes Terry wondered if what he was learning would sit well with his mother. He knew without a doubt that his father would have understood. Warren had died trying to take out dirtbags like the ones he was learning to fight against. But Mary…

Mary had been a stay at home mom for most of Terry’s childhood and had only started looking for work after Matt had started school. Even then, it had only been part time until his parents had separated. Once she’d been the main bread winner for herself and her boys (before Terry had thrown an epic teenager snit fit and moved in with his father) she’d taken whatever hours she could without stinting her sons on time spent with them.

Sometimes Terry really wondered just when his mom had slept. He knew she ate, because she’d eaten with the boys ever night and tried to have breakfast with them on the weekends before running in to work. His mother is made of something stronger than he is even though he’s definitely her son. He’s been keeping his grades up and still working with his new boss on not only how to run a successful business and running all kinds of errands and getting to know people in his network.

(The local police didn’t know, but a lot of their ‘anonymous’ tips were from one local business man who’s seen enough go wrong that though he doesn’t have the health to join the force or go vigilante he wants to do something to make a difference.)

Terry is always tired in between school, work, learning the ins and outs of his future job (he will be able to make a difference once he’s old enough to enter the Police Academy and he will have the contacts and the know-how in gaining those contacts), spending time with his little brother, his girlfriend and getting any kind of rest.

How is his mother able to do everything when he knows she’s still mourning his father (divorced though they may have been at Warren’s death) and certainly not sleeping through the night. She still manages to look not any worse for the wear, unless you really know her and then you can see that the only thing keeping her from cracking right through the middle (instead of all along the edges) is her love and need to care for her sons.

“Terry?”

Terry looks up from where he had been frying a few eggs real quick to see his mother enter. Her hair was already brushed and she was dressed for work.

“I thought you might enjoy something to eat instead of drinking one of your smoothie drinks on the way to work.” he answered as he pulled the toasted bagel from the toaster and carefully loaded the fried egg on it.

Mary smiled at her son and accepted the breakfast sandwich, unsurprised that there was also some strips of bacon in it, “Thank you, son. I’ll see you after school today?”

“Yeah, I have today off.” Terry called over his shoulder as he moved back towards the carton of eggs to fry up enough for a sandwich for himself and his younger brother.

“Can you make sure Matt catches the bus?” Mary asked as she gathered up her keys and wallet.

“I’ll take care of it, Mom.”

Mary turned and pressed quick kiss to her eldest’s cheek in thanks before running out the door.

Terry watched his mother climb into the car and wondered again how she kept going.


Inspired by the prompt from DungeonPrompts last Thursday.

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About martha0stout

I like to read and write and hang out with my family and friends. I currently live on a farm and all that such a living entails.
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8 Responses to How Do You Keep Going?

  1. Pingback: Dungeon Prompts – Season 3, Week 3: Overcoming Ourselves | The Seeker's Dungeon

  2. Nice way to answer the prompt. You took it in a direction that I wasn’t even thinking about, but is obvious wants it comes into your head. Of course you have to overcome yourself to become a parent and take care of someone else. Nice one.

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  3. Pingback: Dungeon Prompts – Season 3, Week 4: Police Brutality | The Seeker's Dungeon

  4. WeaverGrace says:

    Great opening verse. I am impressed that the use of the (what’s the name of that poetry format?) doesn’t look the bit contrived. The first word of each line is perfect. How extraordinary!

    I appreciate the provocativeness of your prose. As a mother, I understand the challenge of balancing selfcare with being able to care for others.

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    • martha0stout says:

      Most of that info is watching my mom and two of my sisters.

      I’m glad you liked the opening poem, I don’t normally mix poetry with a story, but one of my favorite bloggers does and I decided to give it a try.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hold up, when did Warren and Mary get divorced? In the other posts they sounded like the perfect couple.

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    • martha0stout says:

      I jump around the storyline. I’m trying to get most of it out of my head and, well not on paper as this isn’t paper, but the closest equivalent. Kind of like what I did for another universe that I write with. I write the whole thing out as parts of it highlight in whatever order they decide to. (I am not in control of this universe.) After the whole story’s out, I let it sit for a bit and then go through and read all the snippets again and then write draft 2 where it’s all in order.

      I’ve tried writing stories out in the correct order before and I often hit blocks. This method has worked better for me.

      The divorce will eventually be explained. She still mourns him as if they hadn’t been divorced. That’s a clue that there’s more to this than meets the eye.

      And yes, I was sad when the divorce came up in the initial envisioning of this story because these two were the first romance I’ve ever touched that went so well for so long.

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