Should I die, this blog will serve as my son's source of virtual mama.

If I live, I won't have to repeat myself.

sigers writes fiction and nags her son in austin, texas. 

What I mean by an orange.

I admit it. I have my moments. While most of my clothes come from 
thrift stores, I also have shoes that cost more than my car note. I 
have a purse that sashays reeeeal close to the house note. You flew 
first class before you were six months old. And yes, one of my 
girlfriends bought you a pair of Gucci sneakers. I’m sure you’ll hear 
your father call me “Bougie-la-la-la” at some point or another. 
“Bougie” kinda means well to do, with a taste for the finer things in 
life. I have no idea what the la-la-la part means. You’ll have to ask 

Now he’s teasing me, but it never works because I turn to him, lift an 
eyebrow and say, “I sho is. I’ve been poor and now I do pretty well. 
I like this MUCH better.” I used to have to eat those big blocks of 
bland American cheese. I prefer cheddar cheese. I still have a well 
preserved doll that I got at charity Christmas party. I really liked 
that doll and I was happy to get her. I was thankful for all the 
things I got – even the games that were missing pieces and 
instructions. I’ve eaten spaghetti with no sauce for dinner.

Your childhood won’t be like that. The fact that I will be able to 
afford a French immersion daycare is a joy far greater than the 
Bugaboo stroller I ride you around in. You will have swimming lessons. 
Montessori. Drum lessons. Golf lessons. Mama gets excited just 
thinking about the fancy things I’m going to able to do for you. But 
I’m not sure how I’m going to give you the gifts that you can only get 
from struggle. The ability to not let the everyday drown you. What if 
there’s no tiger nipping at your heels and threatening you with a big 
block of American cheese and a book of food stamps? Will you get that 
drive? Or will you grow up bougie?

See, the insult/implication of bougie is that you have lost the 
ability to live without your fancy things. That you’ve grown soft and 
lost your survival skills. I can laugh when your dad teases me, 
because we both know that’s not true. I come from a line of women that 
know how to make something out of nothing. That was a great part of my 

At Christmas, my grandmother made oranges seem like a magical gift. I 
remember being excited to see the the lump of them in my stocking. 
They were vibrant and polished and selected just for me. I know. 
You’re like, oranges? Dude, I got other presents. But the oranges were 
special because she made them special. She made you see the magic and 
the gift in the plain old everyday and that became enough to sustain 
you while you were reaching for more.

I went to some fancy schools too. Not because we had money. Because my 
mama had hustle. And that hustle is going to get you into charter 
schools that tell me to step to the back of the wait list, no matter 
how much money I have.

I’m trying to give you things that make you spring off of what your 
father and I have done, into greater heights. I don’t want you to 
snuggle down into the comfortable boredom of the privileged. If I give 
you everything, you will become lazy, weak-minded, selfish, shallow 
and weak. Please consult MTV’s show called “Sweet 16” for reference. 
It’s not pretty.

I have some ideas for your teenage years. You will have an allowance 
AND you will have a job. And you will pay for some of your car. That 
car will not be a BMW. Not even if mommy hits the lotto. I have ideas 
for the next few years. I’m going to be sure that your eyes and heart 
are open to the less fortunate. And that you offer your hands and mind 
to help them. But in the meantime? I’ll start you off with an 
appreciation for oranges.

Amsden says, "Mommy."

Thanks to you, I'm afraid to die.

Thanks to you, I'm afraid to die.