Joanne De Simone
I asked these questions, knowing there would be no reply. Benjamin’s inability to speak distresses me most whenever he’s sick. How can I help him fight pain or illness when there’s no clear understanding of what we’re up against?
I am sucked into baseball every year. I tell myself that I’m not like the other parents, the ones schmoozing with the coaches, paying for expensive clinics and camps in the off-season, the ones with enough baseball gear to outfit an entire team; but we’re all the same.
My first contraction. No longer the shy darting of minnows, the unmistakeable sensation is the bold rolling wave of a whale’s tail slapping the water, and it’s funny how suddenly the conditions of the day and our home and my body are perfect for a birth, the present moment forcing a readiness that no amount of thinking could accomplish.
I understand my mother so much better now that I’ve lost my round-cheeked baby, my tiny gymnast in shiny leotards, my confident hula-hooping girl, my young teenager who rhapsodized about how her team was her family. One by one, the baby, the toddler, the child, and the teenager have vanished into thin air.
Years ago, I taught this one to tie his sneakers, carve a pumpkin, kick a soccer ball, hold a kitten, and fend off a bully on the school bus. Now he thinks he knows it all.
Angel Sands Gunn
A writer’s workshop in Vermont. She still can’t believe she has gotten in. She fretted over it, after being accepted. Would she be ready? But now, she thinks of posting a selfie on Facebook, in front of the famous inn with the tag, “Pinch Me.” When she gets there. In four and a half hours, the map on her phone estimates. But that’s too boastful, she decides. Going is all that matters. She doesn’t need anyone to know.
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