It all came crashing down.  Twice.  The night before last, I was putting Chase to bed when Noah appeared.

“Mom, my ENTIRE bookcase just fell off the dresser.”

I hadn’t heard a thing. So I do what a lot of Moms do in these situations.  I asked a series of incredulous questions all at once.

“Just now? How did that happen?  It just fell?  DID YOU GET HURT??? Is it a big mess? Where is Daddy?”

“Yes.  I don’t know. Yes. No. Yes. He is in my room looking at the mess.”



We are still not sure what happened as according to Noah he was just opening a dresser drawer when the bookcase tipped.  No one was hurt, except for the little league trophy guy who was decapitated in the fall.  We all snickered at this.


But the accident supplied the impetus to do a little Spring cleaning.  Beginner chapter books from Noah could go up to Chase’s room.  But first I would need to make some room on Chase’s book shelves, which is where Dave found me last night sitting forlornly among the board books and stories that had lived there and had been virtually ignored for the last 5 years, until now.  He knew immediately.

“You okay?” he asked with that empathetic half smile that a husband gives his wife when he knows she’s on the verge.

Not so much.

Like tombstones in a crowded forgotten graveyard, the books were spread out around me unmoving … but, oh so moving as I remembered how we used to read.  Could Dave still recite The Big Red Barn from memory?  Did I remember the funny intonation I used for that page in Zin Zin Zin?  How we loved when the sky turned pink in Ant and Bee and the Rainbow! Each story was told a certain way, and once told, so it would be told the same exact way, again and again.  Chase sidled up next to me on the floor and began to help me sort.

“Hey, I remember this one!” 

And so we sat and read these books together for the first time in years.   And maybe the last time, as we packed them up to make room for the chapter books.

It all came crashing down for a second time last night.  But this time on me.  And this time, it hurt.


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