The thing about having a child is that you’re always sick. And after a while this perpetual sickness starts to bleed into your actual health, so what started out as daycare residuum (a clogged nose and cough that feel, even without squinting too much, like an expression of your deep bond with your child) becomes the reason that you never exercise or, pretty quickly, never get up from under your blanket on the couch unless you’re absolutely dragged up, probably by your child. You start, if you’re me, calling this your FDR period. You could just as easily call it your Winston Churchill period, but FDR was better, just generally. 

You’re sick because you’re melting, melting like ice that was in the shape of you – or metal that was in the shape of you, it doesn’t matter, it all melts. Either way you were in the shape of you and now you are reforming around the shape of someone else. You do this when you are in love too, but just at the edges, a slight blurring of boundaries there and a bigger blurring of boundaries here. And the difference is that to do it right, at some point, after years of melting, you’ll have to turn back, form those boundaries back up. People talk about pushing the baby bird out of the nest but it’s not quite that easy. You can’t push them out of the nest without taking yourself apart and then trying to find your old shape without a mold.

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