Wednesday, May 14, 2014
The Distance Between Things
I dabbed a bit of ointment for canker sores on the white flesh of Sophie's inner lip this morning while she groaned and squirmed. I had to hold her down almost roughly, and that reminded me of holding her down years ago when we stuck those needles in her leg that delivered the drug that was supposed to stop her seizures but didn't. I gave her an Advil for the pain and forced liquid down her throat. These things are harder to do than you think. Later, as I sipped my coffee in a yellow cup, I watched through the still wavy panes of glass in the dining room a bird hustle out of the bougainvillea that grows wild through the cracks of the rickety fence that we share with the neighbors. Tears leaked from my eyes because I was thinking of those shots we gave her and our growing trepidation that the reason why she seized was because of those shots we had given her one month before, the shots that were supposed to guard her from terrible diseases. We could never be sure. Henry was our next baby, and you must understand that we couldn't give him those shots because we were afraid. Maybe you don't understand, and I understand that. Why would you? A tiny plastic figurine in your cocktail sits perfectly in the sea glass some kind person gathered on the beaches in the Pacific Northwest. I will take Henry to the doctor in less than a month, and we will begin to give him those shots, and I will still be afraid. There's only a small distance from a yellow cup of coffee to that kind of fear, a drowning. You should understand. Fear is flung off with anger only sometimes and usually it's rue that dispels it. What if Henry had a seizure following his shots, my mind said next. Would you write a post on it and call out those who had mocked you and others like you? It's a short distance from The Mermaid in her glass dome to Dante's Inferno, right behind her.
***I've decided to drop the comment feature for this post, because to tell you the truth, I don't want to read them. Thank you for your patience.