Thirteen Ways of Looking at My Bipolar Son

I.

Milo: Mommy, if you were pregnant with a girl baby who you knew was going to be a Titan and Daddy swallowed you because he thought you were delicious and wanted to have you with him always, and you had to give birth to your baby inside Daddy’s head, would you be mad?

Me: Yes, I’d be mad.

Milo: What if, instead of that, Daddy looked at your outfit and called you fat, would you be mad?

II.

Milo: Is it true that a woman doesn’t need a man to have a baby?

Me: Yes, it’s true. She needs sperm, which comes from a man.

Milo: How does it come from a man?

Me (explanation of sex. . . blah, blah, blah. . .): then the sperm finds the egg and fertilizes it

Milo (interrupting in a panic): You have eggs? Eggs? Are you a reptile?

Me: No, I’m a mammal. . .

Milo: Wow, this whole business makes no sense. . .but who am I to judge, we all got here somehow.

III.

Me: So, how were those Buffalo wings? Spicy?
Milo: My mouth burns with the heat of a thousand suns.

IV.

Milo: Mommy, do you ever want to kill everything and everybody? Just snuff out the whole of the life source?

Me: Sometimes.

Milo: Bonding with you is so satisfying.

V.

Me: Milo, do you know how this giant mess happened?
Silence
Me: Um, Milo?
Milo: I’m thinking.
Me: Thinking about what?
Milo: I’m thinking that I’ll go with an evil twin story. But I need a minute to figure out whose evil twin, because B is kind of her own evil twin these days, if you know what I mean. . .

VI.

Me: Milo, what do you want for lunch?
Milo: Your mortal soul.
Me: I mean, what do you want to EAT for lunch.
Milo: Your mortal soul. I want to eat your mortal soul for lunch. I will devour you.
Me: Oh Buddy, you did that years ago. Now, I’ve got turkey or ham.

VII.

Me: Milo, put on your fleece.
Milo: I’ve been outside, I don’t need it.
Me: It’s 50 degrees. You need it.
Milo: You don’t know what I need.
Me: Actually I do know what you need. You need a fleece.
Milo: What if I don’t wear the fleece, what happens?
Me: You’ll be cold.
Milo: What if I want to be cold?
Me: Also, I’ll get in trouble because the school will think that I’m not taking care of you.
Milo: So you want me to wear the fleece for your benefit not mine.
Me: Yes, exactly.
Milo (putting on the fleece): as long as we’re clear on that.

VIII.

Milo, wiggling between me and my husband in bed: Daddy, it’s time for you to move out!

IX.

Me: Milo, why didn’t you eat your chicken?
Milo: Because it’s wrong.
Me: Wrong? What do you mean wrong? You didn’t even taste it.
Milo: I could just tell.
Me: You could just tell what?
Milo: That it’s wrong.
Me: But it’s the same chicken I make for you and B that you like. It’s the chicken you’ll always eat.
Milo: It’s all wrong.
Me: Well, what happened to the chicken I put on B’s plate?
Milo: It was right, so I ate it.

X.

Milo: Mommy, do you ever have the same dream that you’ve had before?
Me: Yes. Most people do, they call them recurring dreams.
Milo: What’s yours about?
Me: Anxiety. I go outside without my pants on.
Milo: Every time you dream it you go outside without any pants on?
Me: Yes. What happens in your recurring dream?
Milo: Well, I don’t really have them the way you do. . .if I’m having a bad dream for the second time I give myself super powers and save the day. . . .In my dreams. . . .I save the day.

XI.

There’s a darkening sky

thunder too

and a crack of lightning.

Milo must be flying.

XII.

The rain beats mean

on the car roof, drowning

“I’m gonna pop some tags. . .”

but in the way back

Milo is dancing.

XIII.

Milo: Mommy, do you love me?

Me: Yes, I love you.

Milo: I love you too.

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