Photo: Harry Knight/Unsplash

He was a lifeguard. But, she didn’t know that at the time. She just remembers the first time she saw him. At the YMCA. She was going there to take classes, aerobic classes. They had a daycare and she and her friend and their two little girls-who they could drop off at the daycare there-would go and take exercise classes. Aerobics, ballet sometimes.

She even worked there briefly, teaching exercise classes herself. Subbing too.

And, then she saw him. They were coming in the front door at the same time. And, then, regularly she’d see him.

He was cute. He…


Photo: Andrew Robinson/Unsplash

She remembers being a stay-at-home mom. She remembers being isolated. She remembers being stuck with two young children. Her choice. Gladly stuck, but lonely at times.

The first time he stopped at her house to deliver a package. What would it have been for? Because he became a somewhat regular visitor to her front door. Oh, she remembers now. She was selling a European skincare line and had begun getting shipments of product. First, her sales products-individual demonstration products, then later customers’ products.

Anyway…he was a sight for sore eyes. Handsome, well built — he worked out, you could tell…


Photo: Ethan Dow/Unsplash

It was the first and only time I remember fainting.

We were on a cross country trip to the west coast to visit my west coast cousins. It was a difficult trip. We, a family of six — parents, me and my three brothers were all travelling by car pulling a pop-up camper.

While we mostly camped, we stayed in a few hotels along the way.

We ended up in Mesa Verde, Colorado. It was August. It was hot. We were to ride on horseback and take a guided tour to see the cliff dwellings. …


Photo: Ava Sol/Unsplash

She stretches every evening. Sometimes she’ll say, “I’m too tired, I’m not gonna stretch tonight.” And, then, she ends up stretching anyway. Even if it’s just hanging over from a standing position so she can release her back, her neck, shoulders, and stretch out her hamstrings.

But, most of the time she has a routine. It helps her unwind. It helps her sleep, she thinks. Well, most times. Doesn’t always work. But it’s kind of like praying, or reading (both of which she does also). She has to do her stretches. To feel whole. To feel like a person.

So


Photo: Jason Rosewell/Unsplash

My house makes a lot of sounds. Right now I’m hearing my humidifier. It’s down in the foyer while I’m upstairs in my bedroom. It makes this whirring noise. It sounds like something out of a sixties sci-fi movie. It’s not annoying. It’s more like an oscillating wave — going and coming at the same time.

My husband brings it out every winter and puts it away every spring. It really does a good job keeping moisture in the air for the entire house which I take for granted as my husband is very on top of keeping it in…


Photo: Jordan Sanchez/Unsplash

Why do I lose some of my favorite things? I had a blue, suede jacket which I loved. I bought it from the clothing store I worked at in high school. Now, I was in college. And, I was on a trip, a car trip to Florida, camping along the way. We would have a few stops and one stop was at a gas station, I think, or maybe a diner, a restaurant. I can’t remember.

I left to use the bathroom. And, I took my jacket off and hung it on a hook. After I was done, I left…


Photo: Bruce Mars/Unsplash

I’m doing a thing. A fast of sorts. Nothing too drastic as I’ve learned from past experiences that, in my case, doing anything too radical doesn’t make that much of a difference. And, beating myself up if I fall off the wagon for a minute while I’m being radical isn’t helpful either.

So, in support of my oldest daughter, who is also doing a fast/thing of her own design for the rest of January, I’m trying something different. I’m going to give up some things, but not totally. That is to say, I’m going to make adjustments.

So, here is…


Photo: Christiana Rivers/Unsplash

She loved the ritual. She loved the smell of it. She loved grinding the beans. She loved filling the water tank at the back of the machine and tightening the lid. She loved having it all ready the night before, so that in the morning, she could just switch it on. She loved her coffee.

But now, the thrill is gone. As, she doesn’t get to enjoy her coffee at the moment. Oh, she still drinks coffee but it’s on the fly and sometimes it’s cold, or too hot, or burnt, but she has to drink it anyway. …


Photo: Natalia Y (Unsplash)

“How the Hell did you do that?” my daughter asks as we sit at the bar. The bartender had poured me a shot of tequila (heavy on the salt) and on its way to my lips I had brushed it with my other hand and it spilled out all over the bar counter-and me-splashing everywhere, especially on my face and my clothes. My face now had a wash of salt all over it. As I turn toward her, “Does it look that bad?” I ask my girl. “Well, your makeup is starting to run, mom. …


Photo: Johnny McClung/Unsplash

Everything happened in Sixth Grade.

Or, so it seemed. I had a great teacher for sixth grade — Mr. Browning. I had a great art teacher — Mrs. Flower. And, that was such a great name for an art teacher, n’est ce pas? Mrs. Flower.

Mrs. Flower brought in a photo one day off the cover of an issue of Time Magazine. On it’s cover, which she must have ripped off just to show me (and which she gave me) was a photo of Venus de Milo by the Renaissance Italian painter Botticelli. But the coolest part of that experience…

jean compton

I have an eye for the artful and influence. Essays, Memoir and Musings on this and that.

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