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the right thing

I left Jack at home tonight, alone after dark for the first time. He's quite responsible for a 9-year-old boy. Still, it worried me to do it.

Today was the last day of school. Jack's report card showed maintenance or improvement across the rubric. His coveted LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean for Wii came from in the mail today. He conducted himself with confidence at this afternoon's piano recital, even when I lost my place in the duet we played and missed the page turn.

I couldn't make him sit through a high school graduation. I just couldn't.

But I couldn't miss it, either. I've known Michelle's daughter since she was Jack's age. When I met Carolyn she was a third grader attending the same school as Jack. They even had the same third grade teacher.

And my Michelle... she's been there for me. She understands my current travails. Four years ago she and her husband divorced under different circumstances. Of all the family members, Carolyn in particular has had a hard time coming to terms with the divorce. She harbors a lot of anger toward her father. Relations between her and her dad are strained, if they exist at all. Of course he insists on attending her graduation. What father wouldn't?

So. Leave my child at home, alone, for 2+ hours at night on the last day of school? Or stay home with my child and miss Carolyn's graduation?

I chose to go. I'm glad I did.

Jack got to stay home and play his new video game for 3 solid hours.

I got to show my friend Michelle how much she means to me by standing by her side and cheering when Carolyn walked across the stage to accept her diploma. I showed her I've got her back in an uncomfortable situation.

"You have no idea how much this means to me," she whispered to me at one point during the evening.

But I think I do. It meant a lot to me too.


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wotd: temporize

temporize \TEM-puh-ryz\, intransitive verb:
1. To be indecisive or evasive in order to gain time or delay action.
2. To comply with the time or occasion; to yield to prevailing opinion or circumstances.
3. To engage in discussions or negotiations so as to gain time (usually followed by 'with').
4. To come to terms (usually followed by 'with').

It's easy to tell yourself that you'll write a daily blog entry using the word of the day from dictionary(dot)com as a prompt, and equally easy to temporize your daily entry by waffling over what to write about, or evading your obligation by procrastination. There. Bedtime.

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1. I love making pinatas. I've made a pinata for Jack's birthday for the last five years. The Death Star, a jellyfish from Spongebob, Patrick Star from Spongebob, Plankton from Spongebob, and just this year King Pig from Angry Birds. I've been commissioned by a friend to produce another Angry Birds Pig pinata for her son's birthday. I'm gonna do it.

2. Right now three of my ten fingers hurt when I type. I don't bite my nails (unless one is already broken) but I do pick and pull at my cuticles. I've developed acute paronychia, a bacterial infection, at those three finger tips. The one that hurts the most is my right thumb. Space bar hell. I've done this to myself since childhood. When I'm pulling and nipping at a hangnail, I know it's going to hurt but I go ahead and do it anyway.

3. I consider myself substantial: in body and in mind. I am robust. I have zeal. I just don't have any confidence.

4. My brain stop…