Raw Narrative

I wanted to write about something that happened this morning. Then I realized that I had already written the event, in a (maybe) more authentic voice than I would employ for blogging. Let’s call this earlier version the “raw narrative.”

Adrian has been out of town on business since Sunday. (Which leads me to another opportunity to express my unrestrained admiration for single parents, and particular single parents of special-needs children. After a few days of handling Martin’s schedule alone, I’m toast. You amaze me.) When Adrian is traveling, I have a habit of sending him morning and nighttime updates via Blackberry.

Here, unedited except to change the names, is this morning’s update for Adrian:

Good morning, Sweetie! Martin and I are looking forward to having you back. It is drizzling here but so far not too bad.

Sweetie, I started crying this morning, in the street. I was standing with Martin, watching for the school bus to come. He was holding my hand, waiting patiently, not fidgeting, not flopping to the sidewalk or hanging on my arm, and he was making spontaneous sentences about some things he saw (“The fire truck is red,” “The man is running”), and then it hit me that he is getting better, that we’re managing this struggle, that every day I see more and more of the person emerge who our son was meant to be before this god-awful disorder took hold. I looked pretty foolish, I think, crying on _____ Street. But there I was.

In other news, I sent the first brief off at 4:00 a.m. and haven’t received comments yet, so I took advantage of the lull to jog over to the Union Square greenmarket for duck eggs, cow bones, and ostrich filet, to make sure the fridge and freezer are stocked for when my mother is here. My word, what have I become? Also got some of that buttery “Two Guys from Woodbridge” basil that we had last week. Come home so I can feed you.


Let me begin by saying that I’m not usually a crier. At least, not an in-the-street crier. As the penultimate paragraph indicates, I had worked until 4:00 a.m., which left me two hours for sleep before I had to rise at 6:00 a.m., which is the breakfast-and-school-prep time I need when Adrian is away. To that I will add that our senior-advisor cat, Philly, who inexplicably screeches during the night—not to be confused with our junior-advisor cat, Freddie, who pees everywhere—launched his half-hour hyena routine at 5:06 a.m., ultimately leaving me about 86 minutes for sleep. So I was tired, and emotions were heightened.

That disclaimer notwithstanding, the crying was entirely justified. Remember the three crap months we endured from August to November, when Martin’s yeast kicked up again and all the gains we’d made over the summer seemed to disappear? Gone. A memory. Martin is better than ever right now. His eye contact is so consistent that I rarely think about it; I assume that if I say his name, I will see his eyes, for as long as I’m talking. Joint attention is rising again. And Monday afternoon Samara noticed Martin casually taking the initiative to hold a friend’s hand.

We went through three months bad enough that I doubted the entire recovery process, and doubted whether I could endure. I know there may be down times to come, as well. But this day, here, now, I am so glad we’ve hung in there.

I will conclude by advising that I am in no way affiliated with or compensated by the “Two Guys from Woodbridge” company. I really did write that in the email to Adrian, and they really do grow magnificent buttery organic basil.