“Hey, can anyone be me tomorrow night?” Her husband recovering from a kidney transplant and in the throes of frequent doctor visits, my friend flashed an email through space. She needed someone to attend a band concert with two of her children and to video-record the music. “While I can’t be you, I would be…

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In an espresso-steaming coffee shop, all the tables are crowded. There are no vacancies except at the tall table in the corner. Three of us stagger ourselves respectfully amidst five close-proximity chairs, wielding our bags and books into puzzle-like-precision placements. A cheese danish tantalizes me from a wrapped paper bag, while Komodo Dragon coffee and…

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In a flurry of pastel crepe paper, the pinata shattered and candy rained down on the four children. From the sidelines, we watched as they eagerly reached in to pick up glittering wrapped chocolates. New to pinatas, my four year old happily snatched an M&M’s packet and then came to me to open it. “Hey,…

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  “Mom,” she laughs, as I slouch in the chair, gripping my burning throat. “Ouuuuuch!” I squeal and slink lower in my chair, waiting for the scalding tea to finish its course through my esophagus. “You look like a teen ager like that,” she grins, shaking her head at me, compassion lining her face also.…

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