15 Days Till Day Care

We arrive at 7 a.m., starving. Their note says, Help Yourself. We finish an open bag of pistachios. Baby wakes, crying while frozen breast milk thaws. We do 10 hours holding, changing, and feeding, punctuated by laundry, zoo, and library story-time. Monster stroller costs $700. Baby never naps. Stepdaughter and husband arrive late. Our backs hurt. The train is packed. At 8 p.m., in our PJs, we read their text. Dinner recipe pistachios missing! He hears me thinking, only 14 more days. I hear him thinking, we canceled Paris. We raise a glass. To the newest member of our blended family.


Roberta Beary moved to the west of Ireland to write herstory after a 35-year career as a finance attorney in Washington, D.C., New York, and Tokyo.

Photo Credit: Nathan Walls

15 Responses to “15 Days Till Day Care”

  1. Mary White says:

    I love the pistachio loop! This is so well crafted. I minding my three grandchildren tomorrow.. I can feel a trickle of hot swat run down my neck just thinking about the buggy!!

  2. Sasha says:

    Liked this. Neat story. I feel for them.

  3. Julie Mitchell says:

    I love it. Their frustration is tangible. Well done!

  4. Elaine McKay says:

    Love this. The strain of compromise explored beautifully.

  5. grills says:

    such a great story i love this

  6. Bob moyer says:

    I love the accuracy of “I hear him thinking”, increasing the tension between intertwined, diverging lives

  7. Marta Riordan says:

    Precise and imaginative use of language. Mood, sense of place and narrative expertly conveyed in 100 words. We’ll done!

  8. Hugs of gratitude to Lynn Mundell and Grant Faulkner for selecting my story and to photo editor Beret Olsen for the image!

  9. Caroline says:

    Love how you so completely capture the essence of family gatherings.

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