Ben was about three, sitting on the couch looking at a book. We were getting ready to go to a farm to see some animals. I had told Ben about the trip, thinking he would be excited, but there was not much of a reaction.
“Ben. Ben. Ben,” I called. “Ben! Be—en, can you hear me? We have to go.”
Sigh. “Yes, okay. I don’t want to go. I want to stay here.”
“Ben, we’re going to go do something as a family today. We’re going to a farm to see animals.”
“I don’t want to go see animals.” Continue reading
Paper towel, paper towel, I just cleaned up the floor.
Paper towel, paper towel, I don’t need you anymore.
“Mommy, I don’t want to be here.”
“On the Earth.”
“Ben, what are you saying? What do you mean?”
“I want to go back to where I came from.”
“Honey, are you upset about something?” Continue reading
Ben was never impressed by concept of the tooth fairy or by any money or gifts he might get in exchange for his baby teeth. He just wanted his teeth to not fall out. Continue reading
Apparently I had forgotten to tell Ben that his baby teeth would fall out and that he would get new ones. In the middle of the night, he came into our room.
“Mommy! Please wake up and brush my teeth. Something is really wrong. It feels like my tooth is falling down.” Continue reading
Ben was thirteen months old and looking at the cover of a book I was reading about the Twin Towers. It had a small, grainy picture of both towers on fire. He couldn’t walk yet and could hardly speak, but he kept crawling over to the coffee table and picking up the book and looking at the picture whenever I put it down. I was baffled. Continue reading
The summer before Ben turned five, we blew bubbles in the back yard all the time. Ben had a green plastic saxophone bubble maker and when he would blow and blow into it, he would form a big, sturdy bubble that would float into the sky like a balloon. Or it might fly into a tree branch and pop, which was kind of cool too. Sometimes Ben would blow bubbles when the sun was going down, and the bubbles would turn orange and gold and glow like round, self-contained sunsets.
One day we were out on the deck and he blew a big bubble that floated up as high as the top of a tall tree in back of the driveway. Then he said something he’d never said before.
“Mommy, it’s going to come back.” Continue reading