by | Aug 16, 2011 | 2 comments

Yesterday I took apart Audrey’s crib and put together her new “big girl bed.”  I’d bought it at IKEA and the boxes had been sitting in the hallway for a few weeks.  I was waiting until the new bedding I’d so carefully selected came in the mail.  I was waiting until my sciatica wasn’t as disabling.  I was fearful of my toddler, who refuses to go to bed nightly, suddenly having the choice to stay in her bed or not.

But mostly, I was dreading taking apart the crib that you put together for her.

I had offers from a few other men to do it for me.  But I knew, for this very reason, I had to do it myself.

Then, without much thought, I decided at around 3 pm yesterday, I would do it.  “Audrey, mommy’s going to put together your big girl bed,” I say getting out my toolbox.  “Say goodbye to your crib.”

But really, it is me who must say goodbye to the crib.  To the baby I had who is now almost three years old.  To the crib because there will not be the “second baby” we were planning on.  To my season of being a new, young mother.   Before I was a widow.

It takes a matter of minutes really to disassemble the crib.  (Assembling the bed took a lot longer and included various profanities and vows of never purchasing another piece of furniture I need to put together.)

Each screw I turn and un-tighten, is one that you tightened and put in.

Tears run down my face.  I do it quickly.  The pieces of birch colored wood fall to the ground one by one.  I stack them neatly against one another in the hallway.


August 16, 2011


  1. becky

    Of all your recent posts, this gets to me the most. It is such a profound and literal image–but at the same time, it is not. You have not literally dismantled the work of you and Dan–the love or the passion or the care–and you never, ever will.

  2. Jo Julia

    thank you becky. this is true but i hadn't separated the two- metaphor/literal- in my own mind. thank you for doing that for me.


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