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Freud and others viewed a mother as a bit of a vending machine with breasts.

Another shrink wites that 'each of us spent some time as an overwhelmed, enraged, unattended little bundle of nerves.' She suggests that each of us has inhabited a land of squalling infantile need, cold or terrified or hungry, inevitable moments of pain experienced as absolute, moments of panic so intense they set our infant hearts pounding at 220 beats every minute.

Each of us knows, too, the experience of relief from that state, which must have felt like an act of magic: pain is aroused, registered, intensified, and then, just as suddenly, pain is eased. The nerves are soothed, hunger allayed, our mouths close upon a nipple and begin to suck --- the fearful moment is interrupted as we are picked up, held, contained in the vast warm universes of our mothers.

All through life, Desire has indestructible performance. Desire is inextinguishable. But anorexia is primarily a state of denial --- denial of hunger, of pain, of emotion, of desire itself --- but every so often the denial cracks open ... to reveal the real depths of your hungers, for love, for understanding, the hunger to be held safely, taking you back to the earliest days when things were so much simpler ...


from :Caroline Knapp, "Appetites" (c) 2002, a month before her death at 42


kiota too late for the stars
Moonfire Marion Bridge / Brad

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