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I told,
I told one person that my husband was abusive.
I told myself that I was not making it up.
I told myself that I was worth more.
I told myself that I could leave him.
I told myself that I could get a job.
I told myself that I could support my daughters on my own.
I told my daughters that they were worth it.
I told my …

At age nine my twin sister Heidi and I lived with our single mother near the 59th Street Bridge and I remember seeing a homeless man lying in the street. I thought he was insane or too lazy to get a job. After all, my mother kept it together by working nights as a nurse, leaving Heidi and I alone all night without a babysitter, and during the …

I can't remember what I did on the Sunday after my father died. What do people do on Sundays? Football? Laundry? Home improvement? My weekly visit to the nursing home room where he lived had become more than an obligation; it was a steady date. That's when I realized why I hadn't been able to keep a boyfriend. I had been dating my father.

He suffered from Alzheimer's and …

After our guests were led to exit and dinner's dishes were cleaned and dried my two housemates and I shuffled to the den with that tepid satisfaction thirty-somethings learn to endure. We felt an emptiness in the house, and perhaps, admittedly, in our hearts too. We looked around, noticing. The paintings seemed no more significant than the beige of the walls. All the room's objects were merely the work of …

I didn’t think things could get any worse, but then my grandmother threatened to call the police. This only enraged my father even more. He hadn’t done anything. That is, he hadn’t done anything except lose his temper.

Like any other Wednesday night, my father arrived to take me out for dinner. That was part of his custody rights. This particular evening, my mother, who lived with my …

Test.

“Karen decided to keep the baby.”

I reached out for the side of the car. Acid’s taste rising in the back of my throat came later.

“She’s keeping the baby,” I said aloud to no one. My husband who drove remained silent.

Staring out the windshield at cars pulling in and out of the strip mall, my words flowed. “What do we do now?” …

I was in 8th grade. I had worn eyeglasses since the 5th grade, and hated the "four eyes" and "bookworm" monikers. It was a big deal that my mother agreed to get me a pair of contact lenses. Instead of going to our regular eye doctor, I wanted to go to a new optician that advertised and had pictures in the window of all the beautiful people …

While sitting in a room filled with women bloggers who were writing six-word memoirs as ice-breakers for a networking session at the Blogalicious Weekend Conference held in October 2010, I looked around and noticed the diversity. There were African American, Asian, Latina, and white women of every shape, size, and color you could imagine. They represented the beauty of humanity. I took pen to paper and wrote …

A woman is having a baby. She had not known what to expect but finds the experience not unbearable. Labor pains wash through her lower abdomen—a clenching. She breathes and breathes again, her eyes fixed on a ceramic bear her sister made in art class. She doesn’t know that she is almost there, doesn’t know that she is nearly dilated and will in minutes push out first a small head …

I love the newness of uncharted skin; every land different from the one before it, every scent more intoxicating than the last. I'm an explorer at heart, and I know that there are miles and miles worth of lands in this world that I've yet to discover.
When I was a little girl I never thought about my wedding day or played house with the boys in our old apartment …

I gave my nephew, Dayton, a Whoopee Cushion for Christmas this year. He is four years old and this is the age when quantity wins over quality and high expectations and lots of sugar ensure disappointment and pleasure are interwoven.

“Buddy!” I called to Dayton, “I’ve got one for you!” He ran over, the brief UN-knowing of an unwrapped gift a potent motivater. He tore open the …

There is no moment.

There is no moment, no singular even that I can recall that would explain all this. The pain, the uncertainty, the confusion and the frustration. There is no haunted, tortured past; no one who hurt me, no one who can be blamed for everything.

And there was no moment when I realized this. I just is. It has …
Thinking of a moment seems impossible.

The night was exceedingly depressing. These were the last hugs, the last smiles, the last late night meal as a college student. My parents watched on from the car as I took in these final post-graduation moments surrounded by my roommate and friend. My fiancé had decided to stay another year in school, and many of my friends were graduating the following year as well. Yet, …

During my first fifty years, I am lucky to have had several Big MOMENTs. Moments of clarity and unmistakable direction. The most recent MOMENT in my life came in 2001, by way of very bad news. When bumping into an old friend at a coffeeshop, I learned that her son, Byron Case, had been arrested, (and would soon be Wrongfully Convicted of murder, and sent to prison to …

When I glanced again into the eyes of a boy who turned my world, I saw nothing but sincere truth. And at that moment is where I found myself beginning to believe that I must be something special, because to find someone who made me believe was the only thing I wanted to feel. He gave me complete and utter happiness, and I coould find a better reason for wanting …

When this occurred, there was no mental clock present. I saw the same day on repeat for five years straight. My time was running out. This lame movie scene had no meaning. Then I just knew I had to find one- a reason to keep on ticking.
I changed when I started looking. My whole life perspective became optimistic. I didn't …

Autumn 1984.

I was a shy and very confused eighteen year old, trying with all my might to fit into the world around me. A main part of my life, then, was church and being a good Christian, though I struggled so hard at this. The Church was my only social life, the high-point of which was the Sunday morning Eucharist service.

After the service the …

I love driving roads that cross the New England countryside. There is always something different around the next turn. One cloudy spring day my daughter Sura and I were slowly cruising on Route 5, north of Greenfield, Massachusetts, when the local general store appeared just beyond a long curve. “Dad, let’s stop and get a treat,” her tender 5 year old voice said. We parked in front and got …
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The Moment Book

Moments from the SMITH Community

Tomorrowland "Daisy, F3," my son Archer says as we pull into our parking spot. Disneyland’s about to open and we've arrived, just the two of us, our last hoorah before school starts. *** The alarm goes off and I pull the pillow tightly over my head. My husband, Hal, offers to wake the kids so I roll over, fall back asleep until Archer's voice wakes me, this time for good. "Hi, Mommy. It's …
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With Both Hands Whenever I think of my mother, my mind flips to this story. Not to the whole story, but right to the middle of it, the worst moments of it. For me, that's where the story always starts. My mother was beating the hell out of me. The first few blows seemed to come from every direction as I grabbed my nightgown and pulled it over my head, not …
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Reasons to be Thankful By Robert Israel They scraped me off the street, my bicycle in a heap nearby, and ever so gingerly placed me on the gurney. A crowd of curious onlookers watched intently, thankful they were not being loaded onto the ambulance. The nurses at the hospital were calming as nurses are wont to be, and administered an intravenous tube of morphine, and soon everything around me became fuzzy and numb, and the …
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Read More Community Moments →
 
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