01 02 03 Prone to Wander: Sitting here in the dark, with a pumpkin scented candle burning, 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Sitting here in the dark, with a pumpkin scented candle burning,

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the boys sprawl out on the sleeper sofa, the clock ticks, but it’s the battery operated one. I’m in the La-Z Boy recliner because they say, could you please stay out here? Please.

No power since noon or so, and it’s after 10 pm. The eggs and milk and lunchmeat and cheese are probably spoiled. I do hope our power returns soon, but I realize that there are those who have lost lives during this hurricane, and we are safe.

Hurricane Matthew, the culprit. Flooding, fallen trees. So much damage. 

We eat Cinnamon Toast Crunch and canned Progresso soup for dinner. Just open the can and dump it in a bowl. I think about the canned lima beans that haven’t been acknowledged for a year, but we aren't that desperate.

I read them a chapter book, some type of kid’s mystery about a creepy man who lives in a junkyard. Kevin keeps saying, Just one more chapter mom.

We play word games. What’s the first word that comes to mind when you think of…

Pudding, Lunch, School, Everything, Cigars, House, Milkshakes. David keeps saying “cigar” and Kevin says, “everything.” Both think they are hilarious and continuously erupt into giggles. I don't get it, but try to laugh as if I do.

Then we have a back scratching party. I am in the middle and scratch Kevin’s back while David scratches my back. After one minute we switch. I scratch David’s back while Kevin scratches my back.

We talk. We talk about God and church and religions. I tell them what I believe, which they already know, but David says there's so much he doesn't understand. I say, me too. There's so little I know for sure. Kevin says he's pretty sure that this is his fourth time living on earth and that he used to be a caterpillar, then a llama, and then a man who fought in World War 1.

Kevin tells us about his “girlfriend” who “broke up with him” on Friday. What? You have a girlfriend? I ask. We giggle. 

I say, I’m going to bed. Kevin says, why can’t you sleep out here? I say, the bed is too small for all three of us.

Please mom.

OK. I will sit in the recliner for a while. 

I stumble back into my bedroom for pillows, a pen, my notebook, a headlamp, plop down on the recliner, and start writing.

After a few minutes when I think they are asleep, I gather up my pillows to go to my bedroom, and Kevin says, “Can you keep reading that book, mom?”

Before I can say, no, go to sleep it’s late, I plop back down on the recliner, pick up the book and flip it open to chapter 8.

Pumpkin wafts through the air, the rain pounds against the window, and I read.

I want to freeze these moments and for the first time ever, I don’t will the power to return. The food in the fridge is long ruined. Oh well.

I read. The trees swoosh. The rain patters.


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