irrational summer fear

It's a dark one, be warned.

Anytime I go somewhere without the boys--

sorry, let me start again.

That one time I went to Target without the boys, I came back out of the store and opened my car door. The heat rolled out of there like a fog bank. It was thick and humid and made me need a Fresca, like, bad.

I looked in the back seat and saw Chicken's toddler seat.

The straps lay empty against the back of the black velvety seat in direct sunlight. The clips glinted like knives.

My stomach clenched. My throat choked up. My chest was suddenly tight.

I am terrified that I will forget, one day, that I have one or both of my kids with me.

I am terrified I will go into Target and spend an hour wandering among the sports bras and disposable razors, trying on sun hats and flipping idly through the toddler clearance rack.

I am terrified that I will return to the car to find my child in that fog bank of heat, fighting for life, or, unimaginably, already defeated.

I'm terrified of this unforgivable absentmindedness. Every time I forget to return a phone call or leave a load in the washer overnight, I think you forgot this. You could forget your children in the car! Get it together, girl.

I know there's a fair bit of ground between "laundry" and "life of beloved offspring."

And riiiiight, like either one of my boys would ever be quiet in the car for long enough to let me forget about his presence.

But still...

It's probably a good thing this scares the deepest, darkest shit out of me. I'd rather be thinking about it than not. It's the not-thinking that gets you into trouble.


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