“I finished Pre-K. The best part was playing and having friends. The worst part was doing work because that’s boring.”
“She committed suicide a week prior to our thirtieth anniversary. Our oldest daughter had died of leukemia a couple years earlier.
“My husband and I have been trying to adopt a child from foster care for six years. The process is unbelievably difficult.
“Gram died right before Mother’s Day last year. She grew up in Georgia and spent most of her childhood working in the cotton fields.
“I got a job at Great Adventure in 1974—the first year it opened. I dressed like a barbarian. It was OK.
“I’d say twelve is the normal age when a kid around here comes outside alone for the first time. That’s when the trouble starts.
“Every week I get one dollar for allowance. Then I get to choose the section where I put my dollar. There are four sections: spend, save, donate, and invest.
“Your friendships shrink as you get older—unless you have a loose definition of friendship. I used to work with one of the richest guys in Philadelphia.
“The more contact I have with people, the better I feel: eye contact, a smile, I’ll take anything. The moment somebody makes any kind of overture, I’m heading their way.
“There’s a strange culture in medicine. People are less friendly to each other than I imagined. I got an MD and a PhD in Neuroscience.
“It’s hard to raise a kid anywhere, but especially in the city. There’s just so much coming at you all the time.
“Both my husband and I work in retail. I’ve worked for eighteen years at the Macy’s on 34th street. I wake up at 5:30 every morning, make the kids breakfast, and get them to school by 7:30.
“I was raped by my cousin when I was seven. He was a teenager. We were sleeping in the same bed when it happened.
“I was in a fraternity when I was in college. We’d always try to be funny and shoot each other down. And I never really stopped being that way.
“When you’re four you can do awesome tricks. You can do a tumble and a cartwheel. Actually I can’t do a cartwheel, but my sister can do that.
“I’m trying to not always require obedience even though it might be helpful in the moment. I was raised with obedience first and everything else second.
“The hardest was when she left for college. We dropped her off a couple days early, so the campus was empty, and I have this very clear image of her walking alone across the quad.
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“My mom gave me up when I was three days old, and I was raised by my paternal grandparents. They were immigrants.
“I’ve been writing for twenty-five years. I just finished my second novel. I had a really severe anxiety attack right before my deadline.