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Even though at this point it’s really nothing new, I can’t help but feel that I’ve never seen such a thing before. All this sharing and caring and looking after one another in a sisterhood I didn’t even knew existed. That is, until I moved here, into civilization. Fifteen women graced my floors last night in the annual holiday BUNCO gathering. It’s a board game we barely even bother to play because it serves instead, month after month, to bring us together for years on end. My mother would have said we were all into each others’ business too much, what with the trading of kids’ bicycles, all the borrowed silver party shoes, the quick phone calls to see who has an onion, and who can loan some freezer space. She preferred to avoid the risk of sharing and thus the risk of making some kind of mistake that could get you blacklisted for life. My mom lived in fear of that because she’d lived it enough already as an orphan more than thrice over. She taught me to be afraid. We lived in isolation and were woefully unskilled at connecting with other humans. So that’s what’s normal for me no matter how many years I live among the socially-adept on a street crowded with houses. I am surprised again and again at our ability to be present for one another and carry on juggling the love of many all at once. So the education I keep getting here in my neighborhood, and that my children are taking for granted, is some kind of a dream come true.

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