White Oleander
written by Mary Agnes Donoghue, from the novel by Janet Fitch

Astrid: Who is Annie?
Ingrid: What?
Astrid: Who is Annie, Mother?
Ingrid: She was a neighbor who took in kids, did people’s laundry.
Astrid: What did she look like?
Ingrid: Dark, curly hair, freckles.
Astrid: Did she take care of me?
Ingrid: How can you possibly have remembered this? It will only hurt you. Imagine my life, for a moment. How unprepared I was to be the mother of a small child. I was used to having time to think, and you just wanted, wanted, wanted. I felt like a hostage. Can you understand how desperate I was? I dropped you off at her house one afternoon to go to the beach with some friends, and one thing led to another… they had a place in Ensenada. It was wonderful. You can’t imagine. To take a nap in the afternoon, to make love all day if I wanted and not have to think, “What’s Astrid doing? Where’s Astrid?” Mommy, Mommy, Mommy. Clinging to me like a spider. At the end of it, at the end, I just wanted to throw you against a wall.
Astrid: How long were you gone?
Ingrid: About a year, give or take a few months.
Astrid: My God.
Ingrid: But you’re not asking the right question. Don’t ask me why I left. Ask me why I came back.
Astrid: You should have been sterilized.

Kudos and much thanks go to Christina for this monologue, it is very much appreciated.

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