Loss of Balance

Finding a balance between her professional life, something that was necessary to pay the bills and take care of her sons, and her time spent with her sons was very difficult. On the one side, she wanted to bury herself in her work completely so that she didn’t have to think about the hole in her life that used to be filled by her husband. She wanted to keep her body moving so that her mind didn’t have time to think.

On the other hand, she didn’t want to lose anymore of her sons’ lives than she already had. She had missed months if not years of her eldest’s life. She knew that he still blamed her for the divorce between Warren and her. Mary had never been able to sit down and really talk it over with Terry and not talking about it had caused the rift to grow.

“Mary, let me help, you don’t have to work yourself to death for this.” 

“No, Alex,” Mary sighed over the phone, “I need to work, you know that more than anyone else.”

“Mary, you’re missing the best years of Matt’s life, you don’t want to make the same mistakes that you made with Terry.”

Mary drew in a breath of air sharply, but said nothing as she carefully closed the cell phone in her hand.

She wondered if she’d ever find the balance that she needed in this life or if, when it did come, it would ever be allowed to last.

“Alex, you don’t understand,” she whispered to herself, the phone sitting on the table beside her, “My kind are not allowed to do anything other than make mistakes.”

The sun was high in the sky as she looked out the window, the rays beating down on her with a harsh glare as if to remind her of what she was even if she was no longer who she had been.


This was a combination of two prompts: the Dungeon Prompt: Balance and the Art of Succeeding in an All or Nothing World by Sreejit and the Light and Shade Challenge for this first Monday of the month.

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Wish You Could See

image: courtesy of Janssenfrank and taken from Wiki Commons

Mary sighed as she knelt down in front of the gravestone. Her hands did not tremble as they cleared away the grass and weeds that tried to cover the slab of cement, though her fingers lovingly traced the outline of the letters.

“It’s lonely without you, Warren. The boys aren’t home as often as they used to be, busy with work and school and friends. They don’t have as much time for their mother anymore.”

Terry had graduated high school with honors and was now attending university, his long-time girlfriend off and studying her way through dancing, his job not ending just because he had less time on his hands. If anything, he spent more time with his boss than with his mother.

“I don’t mind so much, Terrance is really coming into what he wants to be and I think he would make you proud with his dreams of going into law. He’s not just going to leave it to someone else to fix the mess that has often happened in our legal systems.”

Matt wasn’t in high school, not yet, but that was more because he hadn’t wanted to skip grades than anything else. Her little boy was smart and often spent time over with his brother at his workplace. Terry’s boss didn’t seem to mind and even let the pre-teen help out as well.

Mary smiled once more at her husband’s gravestone, “It seems that I am nothing more than a thought they have now and then, but I know that they still love me even if I don’t quite fit with them anymore.”

With a sigh, she stood.

“I wish you were here to grow old with me.”


This is a dual inspired post, part of it came from reading a post by Oliana this morning (nothingness) and also from the Light and Shade Challenge.

Ringing Silence

The room was quiet and Mary sat staring out the window. The lights were out and her sons were asleep though she could hear the sounds of Terrence tossing and turning even from down the hall.

A small smile graced her mouth, he had never been a particularly quiet boy.

The smile faded just as easily as it had come, but he was far more guarded then ever before. He hadn’t been happy when his parents had separated. No one had been happy, but it had been necessary for the work that Warren was doing. Matthew hadn’t been happy either, but he hadn’t been as vocal about it as Terrence.

Terrence (Terry as he was more and more insisting on being called) was rather translucent about his feelings though Matt wasn’t far behind. This was the reason (other than their young ages) that the boys hadn’t been told about the plan. They were the children and they had responsible parents, parents who could conscience the idea of putting that kind of pressure on their sons.

They wished this hadn’t been necessary at all.

Mary shook her head, these thoughts wouldn’t help her. She looked down at the black clothing she was still wearing though her shoes had been placed by the door as always. It would be some time before she changed out of these clothes and into a pair of Warren’s sleep clothes, ones that he had left behind when he’d initially moved out.

It was eerie how little like him they smelled.

(She had only been wearing them every night since the separation had begun. The boys hadn’t known as she always went to bed after they did and woke long before they started to stir for the day.)

Once she had changed into the sleep clothes, she reached down to where a pocket in the pants would have been located, her hand seemed to disappear into a pocket though if anyone had looked closely (there was no one else in the bedroom) they would have realized that the pants had no pockets. Once her hand came back out, it was holding a simple golden band. It was larger than the one she still wore on her hand.

Mary slipped it over her thumb and spent the few hours she tried to sleep turning the large ring over and over with the fingers of her right hand.


Inspired by the words from this week’s prompt in Three Word Wednesday.

Life’s Dark Book

Her pale face was the lantern
By which they read in life’s dark book.
-RS Thomas, On The Farm

Mary’s face was pale, well, more pale. Her sons stood next to her in their own black clothing, their faces just as pale as their mother’s, though their tears were more easily seen.

Mary had faced things like death of family all her life, long before she’d ever met or had any of her current family, but she had never been so cut off from her Bond mate.

Her mind was more lonely than it had been even after the sealing of the pathway she shared with her sister. This was different and so much more painful.


Written in response for today’s Light and Shade Challenge, again. But this time I managed to stay within the 100 word limit!