Ariel Levy’s Birth and Death in Mongolia
I want to give you ample warning that right now may not be the time that you want to read Ariel Levy’s piece in the New Yorker about giving birth to her son at 19 weeks. It is hard to read. It could be impossible to read if you are in a certain frame of mind.
But that is the thing about written pieces; they can wait for you. They can wait until you are ready to read them.
Josh told me that he thought maybe I shouldn’t read the piece tonight. I was in such a good mood, or a neutral mood. He didn’t want a weepy mess before bedtime. But I read it anyway. Because I thought it was important to read it.
She writes of her loss,
But the truth is, the ten or twenty minutes I was somebody’s mother were black magic. There is no adventure I would trade them for; there is no place I would rather have seen. Sometimes, when I think about it, I still feel a dark hurt from some primal part of myself, and if I’m alone in my apartment when this happens I will hear myself making sounds that I never made before I went to Mongolia. I realize that I have turned back into a wounded witch, wailing in the forest, undone.
I’m not a mess. Maybe I would have been if I had read this without warning.
Instead, I’m just quiet.