The Boiling Point

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Hudson woke up with a 104 degree fever this morning. It doesn’t need a metaphor, it is what it is. Hot, unblemished baby skin.
But for me, every degree above 98 felt like a degree above boiling point. I was boiling water, splashing through the lid of a pot and landing with a sizzle-crash onto the stove.

3AM Jeremy

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I just watched my husband lift his dying father up the stairs.

It wasn’t a moment I planned for in life. Or maybe I planned for it at age 51 instead of 31, but I don’t think so. Fathers die only in abstraction. They aren’t supposed to die for real.

I haven’t planned for this moment, but whether any of us likes it or not, the moment is here.

This Is Your Hug.

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I had an unexpectedly harrowing experience this evening.

Hudson was squeezing my wrist tenderly, which he sometimes does when I read him a story. Tonight’s story was a new one, a quaint little book about a small child narrating to what seems to be another small child about how to survive in the city. It’s a cute book, but sometimes the child’s advice seems questionable: Yes, laundry vents do often smell good, but is it advisable to nap underneath one? And should you really just let yourself into the neighbor’s home to listen to her practice the piano?

It Isn’t Quite Fear

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There’s a large, rather alarming red stain on the sidewalk outside my apartment. After several moments of examination, a few oregano flecks told its story. What is now a sidewalk stain was once a jar of tomato sauce, perched too precariously in an overfull bag of unperishables, moved with haste from car to front door.

Contemplation of an Avocado

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My dad eats half an avocado every morning. He wakes up and leaves the house before dawn, but still, every morning, he slices an avocado and fries an egg on a special skillet that no one cleans right but him. There’s usually some sort of specialty cheese in his fixings. He consumes his breakfast in a hurry, because he’s got to leave time to empty the dishwasher (if he hasn’t already) before he heads out the door. He often takes homemade whole-wheat toast in a paper towel. I don’t know how he manages not to drip honey on himself while he drives. He often leaves the news on for my mom.

Braids, Not Chains

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Most of my favorite writing happens in bed. Each morning promises something different, and it’s a promise—not a swear, not an oath, not a hint. A promise feels more honest; it feels more hopeful.

This particular morning, there’s a round window high above me, casting the most perfect light on Hudson’s profile. His nose is short. I guess I’ve never realized that before. Hudson’s in our bed because we’re visiting family, and we’re sharing a room. He woke up in his pack-and-play too early, and hoping to get another half hour of sleep or so, we brought him here.