What Survival Looks Like


So Sunday morning nearly three weeks after my mastectomy,
we sit in bed and you point at my pyjama top
saying ‘I want to see your boo boo.’
As if to let me know the sudden closing of bathroom doors
and secret showers have not gone unnoticed.
I hesitate before slowly unbuttoning.
You’re two years old, please don’t let this scar you for life,
the Halloween deformity of the dissolving stitches
where once there was warmth and comfort.

You consider what’s missing for a long moment.
Then you say ‘it looks like a smile.’
And of course it does, the long sweep
swirling upwards at each end, though this
would never have occurred to me in a million years.
I could nearly weep with gratitude
but you’re already on to the next game.


2 thoughts on “What Survival Looks Like

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