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  • Writer's pictureDrSwae

Arrivals and Departures - written 2020

Well we certainly do have a pattern now. Today the sun graced us with another appearance and my mind was at peace for a little while.

How long is a mind allowed to be at peace before returning to the escapades of the anxious? It never seems long enough.

While the sun was still shining, we had dinner outside (some of us in coats) and enjoyed the freshness of the evening air.

This happened to be exactly the moment that news was being delivered about changes to the boys‘ school for next year.

I missed the blow, and mercifully heard a more gently delivered recap that still upended my flow.

How on earth can these little boys handle one more change?

The last year and a half threw us into a tailspin and we were just beginning to see through the glass, dimly, in late winter.

And then March marked the arrival of a virus to our community and the departure of our world as we knew it.

In this, we are just like everyone else. Different is not always better, and it is often more challenging. But this is the one time where different just might be easier. And today I would give a lot to be different. (Wish I could tell that to my 13 year old self).

I keep reminding myself, with every change there is growth. I say that out loud for the boys to hear. I am not sure they ever do. Oh, I say directly it to them too. But then I wonder if it's even less likely to sink in.

The funny thing is Scott and I frequently have conversations where we have to talk in code, lest those same little ears hear what we would rather they didn't. Then they seem to hear everything.

We are both busy. Now he is uncharacteristically busy and pulled in many directions. We no longer have those hours of uninterrupted conversation where we imagine how we will raise our boys deliberately.

Now all decisions are done with rapid, but careful thought, on the fly. Explanations are delivered in real time. This real time decision making is tough and leaves a lot of room for uncertainty, but it is the best we have now. Sometimes, we can disguise what we say and talk a few minutes longer if conditions are just so.

But the boys are getting bigger now, and they strain their ears to hear more and crane their necks to watch our faces. They are creative in their detective work.

So these days, whether we intend for it or not, the boys are just more involved in our conversations.

It's not all bad. It develops their empathy, imagination, vocabulary. The baby babble has been epic.

But it's not all good either.

In my life before children, I imagined that one day I would be the parent who could deliver thoughtful explanations with happy, hopeful endings for all of my children's problems. I could allay their fears and brace them for arrival of difficult news or maybe, just maybe even shield them from the ache of a loved one's departure. I imagined a lot of things.

Now, as a real time parent, I am living entirely unimagined experiences with my kids. I guess I'm more like the narrator, only I don't know how the story ends. All I can do is tell it as beautifully as I can with as much detail as the scene can afford.

Ugh, not my plan. But I so love the characters in this one. They are the best part of the whole book.

Okay, skin cancer. In some talks and writings, I talk a lot about the ABCDEs of melanoma. That is a story everyone should know. Melanoma does not descriminate.

Tonight, I'll tell you about the A. A for asymmetry. Does one side of your mole or spot look like the other? Check it out.

Asymmetry in a mole or spot can be trouble. Have it checked out right away. Lots of us are doing telemedicine visits and also seeing people in person when needed. Don't wait.


Dr. Swae


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