Present

With every exhale I can hear the rattle in his chest.  It sounds like oatmeal bubbling on the stove.  Thick and gloppy is how I picture it.  My poor little Buddy has been sick for over a month.  Feverish, chilled, and in pain my snuggle buddy has grown downright clingy.  He wants to be sat with, held, and bundled up at all times.  Beyond keeping him somewhat comfortable the challenge is not freaking out.  When the vet mentioned the underlying cause might be a tumor I went from optimistic to

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Fight for Your Right

Back in March when it started to look like there might be a shortage of the medication I take for my lupus my doctor wrote me a 90-day scrip.  Typically, he just fills for 30 days because this isn’t a harmless medicine.  Taking it requires lots of monitoring.  This is why two months later I was surprised when I got a text message from the pharmacy saying my refill was ready.  I didn’t need more but by this time there was a shortage so I went to pick it up. 

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Witness

I was walking out of the gym when I noticed one of the fitness instructor’s dabbing at the corners of her eyes with a tissue. I gave her a half smile bowing my head ever so slightly to acknowledge something might be amiss.  As our eyes met she took my wrist and said, “Can I tell you something?” “Of course.” “I just found out a dear friend of mine passed away. I knew it was coming and she was old but I’m still so sad.” “Oh, my goodness I’m sorry

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Final-Finals

Finals week–finals week–finals week, it read on my calendar like a news ticker rolling past me at every glance.  I don’t think as a student I thought about it nearly as much as I did a parent.  Ever since the boys started high school I’ve always calendared it so I’d be available to help with whatever they might need. This semester was different though. It was the last finals week, unless one of them decides to get a graduate degree.  A thought I can barely wrap my head around because

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It’s Not Personal

I could see the numbers climbing and feel my anxiety pulse like someone was taking my blood pressure. Two hundred and seventy-five developmentally disabled people and their hundred plus caregivers are a lot of folks to be responsible for.  What if someone has a seizure on the dance floor or trips the fire alarm?  Or far worse–what if someone intent on doing something horrible shows up? The list of what-if’s is as long as the guest list for Prom. I know I wouldn’t be doing my job well if I

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Spin Cycle

At the intersection of Clark and Atherton there was a gas station, 7-Eleven, and Laundromat. A five acre dirt field separated our house from this strip mall. It was filled with gopher holes so it wasn’t smart to run across it for a Slurpee. With laundry you’d have to drive the long way around. We didn’t have a garage so we had to load and unload our car parked on the street. My job was to help with this—and clean out the dryer vents. I thought this was the best

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Rigged

Every year the winner’s of the Palisade Peach Festival’s baking competition have their recipes published in the local paper and every year I say I should enter.  It would be fun I tell myself and yet I’ve never followed through until this year. The adventure started when my book club chose a novel called, “Kitchens of the Great Midwest”.  The online description didn’t enthuse me at all, but out of loyalty to the club I went to Barnes and Noble to at least flip through it. When I found the

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Peanut Butter & Jelly Burritos

We were driving to a meeting with his job coach when Chase asked, “Mom you don’t have a $12,000 coat do you?” I laughed. “No, I don’t have a $12,000 anything.” “Well did you hear about Hillary Clinton’s coat?” “I saw something on Facebook about it.” “Can you believe that?”  “Yeah I can.  Designer clothes are expensive but to be fair men in the presidential race spend a lot of money on their clothes too.” “Not Bernie Sanders.”  He had me laughing. “Probably not.” “I’ll be glad when the election

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Quacked

“Hello, this is going to sound silly but I’m calling about a couple ducks with injured legs.” The young man answering the phone laughed. “This is the Department of Wildlife ma’am it doesn’t sound silly.” “Oh good, well these ducks were born in my yard and moved to the ponds behind my house. They’re eight weeks old and something’s happened to two of them. They’re struggling to keep up with the rest of their family and I’m worried.” “Can you capture them?” he asked. “Probably not.” “You can’t get close

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Bigger Than Me

School was easy for me.  That’s not to say I was a scholarly kid I just didn’t have anything working against me other than being a leftie.  When spiral notebooks are your worst enemy you don’t have much to fear. That hasn’t been the case for my kids and between the two Chase has had it the hardest.  I suppose that’s why in early spring when he sailed through the last class he had to pass to graduate I breathed a sigh of relief.  This was followed by more than

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