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Flashback — Lifetakes: Watching Water // Issue: 302

  “Watching the water go down the drain”

“What are you doing?” I ask my son.

“Watching the water go down the drain.”

“Oh.” I pause for irony — lost on him. But after a moment my silence settles into something less cynical; acceptance, perhaps. Tolerance. To allow him space in this idiosyncrasy. To let him enjoy life for a moment without my constant “Five more minutes, then we leave for camp” ; “Finish cleaning up, then brush your teeth”; “Take out your wet things as soon as you come home, and hang up your bag.” I shrug and force myself to leave him be. A minute later he ambles down the hall past the kitchen to his bedroom, a skinny kid in blue and green pajamas with an army watch on his wrist, crew cut making his ears look a little big.

“Good night, Ma.”

“I love you.”

“I love you,” he rejoins, and then closes his door.

—Devora Cohen

Watching Water


(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 746)

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