Tuesday, March 23, 2010


The world seemed different after her hysterectomy. Before, when she saw dandelions blooming between cracks in the sidewalk or at bus stops, her mind would wander towards little girls in summer dresses picking flowers and playing imaginary games in the backyard.

Now she saw the flowers for what they were; tiny blossoms that had forced their way through a foundation of dry cracked stone.

Or when she thought towards the future, now she was more inclined to see herself sitting alone in a condominium writing late into the night drinking cold white wine snuggled between brown fleece blankets and in bare feet with non-painted toenails.

Whereas before she would have seen and old woman sitting with her husband in a Christmas photo surrounded by a dozen or so grandchildren, all locking ice cream cones on a summer-beach cabin vacation.

There wasn't a tremendous amount of disappointment in this new understanding of her life; in fact there was even a bit of relief since now more than ever she was the creator of her own destiny, fabricating a future for herself. She had even started to dream faintly of having a cabin on a small island and owning a one-person sailboat.

But a part of her also felt crushed; it would pain her, for example, to receive birth announcements from college girlfriends who had just had their third or fourth child; and she saw these friendships that had one been the core center of her life, that had defined who she thought she was, as fading, somehow slipping away.
She put on her sunglasses and closed her book. The beach sandals had gathered some sand that she shook out as she stood up and returned to the beach rental. The chicken soup, still on the stove, was cold now and she poured what was left down the drain, then picked up her cat and walked up the spiral staircase.
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