I Just Called to Say

Today, I call up Tee to thank him for our friendship.

“Last night, I learned all over again that if you look for what’s wrong, you find it,” I say. People defeated by chance are out there bashing their exes as we speak. I have done my share of this. Now it makes me cringe.

Tee and I have something more precious than I ever knew. Some of it is the luck of the draw, and I breathe a sigh of relief for the hand I hold. Some of it, though, is a choice we make every day.

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On Zero

In November, Bug had to visit the clinic for his flu shot. The kid was stone-faced, shivering, and mighty pissed off at me. I had failed to inform him of our destination until we were already buckled in and halfway down the street. When we finally made it into the exam room, the nurse rolled up his sleeve and said, “Okay, on three, I want you to yell out your name.”

“Why three?” Bug asked, twisting his body away from her.

“Because it’s over much quicker that way. Okay? So, on three, just . . .”

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Happy 100 Days: 17

It is only this: When the terrible thing happened, Tee and I reached out to each other several times during the endless afternoon to talk through how we would respond to Bug’s questions. When Tee picked up Bug after school, I called and spoke with my kiddo. They were at the supermarket and everything was a-OK.
 
Today, my phone rang while I was out having breakfast. Bug’s voice: “Mommy, can you send Daddy the advent calendar that’s on your computer?” I told them both where to find the website for it and learned that my kiddo was sick with a tummy bug. I asked if I could pick anything up. The request was made for Gatorade and seltzer. Thirty minutes later, I dropped by, delivered the fizzy drinks, hugged my kid, and sat on the bed in  Tee’s room while Bug showed me the alpine village on the laptop.
 
Animosity is a whisper from the distant past.
 
We are co-parents. Our son is in our shared care. This small good thing is much bigger than I could have ever imagined.
 

Happy 100 Days: 44

Rest comes easily now. Finally, after all these years, the dreams are sweet.

This weekend, I met a new someone deep down in the valley sleep. He was a young man with red-blonde hair and a curious, distracted gaze. He clutched a hardcover book. Maybe he is Bug in 20 years, maybe the whisper of a companion I will someday greet. Maybe he is just that friend of mine I am learning to be.

We sat near each other on a deck built over a creek and the water burbled just beneath our feet. He opened the and the corner of it touched my knee but he was too absorbed to remember to turn it towards me. We spoke our breathless dance about a text neither of us quite understood. I let my fingertips fall on the back of his hand where it grazed the page. He did not reach back for me. I was happy regardless. He turned the page. We talked on.

Proximity can sate hunger. So, it seems, can distance.

I woke up smiling even though he was gone.

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Happy 100 Days: 79

Tee is responsible for

  • drinks
  • ice
  • cookies
  • fruit platters
  • a camera
  • sending invites
  • crafting a scavenger hunt for the playground and nature trail outside the rec center

I am in charge of

  • lego cake
  • paper goods
  • birthday signs
  • cheddar bunnies
  • goodie bags
  • having a stack of pizzas delivered hot at 1:15pm

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Stuck Landing

We will need to limber up for the advanced scheduling contortions set to begin on September 4th. Kindergarten means our little family-ish arrangement has to bid goodbye to the preschool on the campus of Tee’s university. Aligned calendars and an easy childcare commute have been blessings in a rather tumultuous chapter, and now we brace ourselves for a school-year timeline designed for long extinct agrarian families. Bring on the yellow buses, packed lunches, and after-school children’s warehouses.

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