Joody (A Case Study in Post Dramatic Stress Disorder)
Family in crisis, sisters in conflict.
Intertwining stories chronicle the life and misspent times of a negligent mother… a careless narcissist who leaves a path of emotional destruction behind her.
Yet for a potentially heavy subject, the book has a peculiar lightness…
By Kirkus Reviews Mar 2013
Four Views of Joody
It’s Not About Me (Janet)
Second Chance for Me (Brent)
Me at the Core (Bryce)
They Are Made of Me (Joody)
These stories form a case study in Post Dramatic Stress Disorder. Joody is a neglectful mom whose lackadaisical care of her three kids is bolstered by the love and loyalty of our first narrator, Aunt Jan. Janet sets the scene of a multi-fathered sibling group adrift in her sister Joody’s me-me universe; they’re not in danger, exactly, but there are gaps and lapses.
Joody’s fourth pregnancy shatters any pretense all is well. She self-medicates with pot and alcohol; she’s allergic to responsibility. Moody, self absorbed, careless. Drama leading to stress. Her drama. Your stress.
Brent is the first of the absent dads, unaware he even had a kid until this crisis pulls him into view. It wasn’t that he didn’t like Joody, he liked her too much. Then Bryce, their son, shares a young teen perspective on life with Joody, shepherd to his little sisters, leery of this new Dad but wondering if he could be worse than his mom.
Finally, Joody explains what happens when a free spirit is held down by circumstance (kids). She never begrudged giving birth to them, they were her audience for life. The day to day maintenance was more Janet’s thing. Win win.
Kathleen K. offers a rich and diverse collection of Private Publications, including but not limited to narrative fiction in The Lent Hand (Adventures in Beach Town Towing), the sexotic Stoner with a boner (It’s a Long Story), and amorous poetry shared in chapbooks (Your Name Sounds Like Yes to Me) (I Feel As I Am Felt) which are, like many of us, waiting to be released.
Joody and Janet have a talk
“Joody, let’s talk about birth control again. You said you’d think about it before we saw the social worker.”
“Everybody wants me to get my tubes tied.”
“Everybody is one social worker explaining your options and, yes, I think she does believe it would be the best decision. Ask yourself if you want more kids. It’s not about sex, it’s about kids.”
“I do hear you when you talk, you know. I get it, the surgery would be the easiest and most reliable. But, Janet, excuse me. I don’t want to grow a mustache!”
“Why would you grow a mustache?”
“Because my hormones would be all messed up.”
“Joody, your hormones won’t change at all, you just cut the pipe between your eggs and your uterus. Everything else is the same. Same monthly cycle. You’re thinking of what happens if you lose your ovaries, and we’re not talking about that.”
“No, we’re not. We’re talking about snipping two egg-chutes.”
“Does it hurt?”
“I’m quite sure it’s less painful than giving birth.”
“As if you’d know.”
BISAC: Fiction/Family Life