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Comfortable Madness First PDF 4-13-18

“You’re going to be

“You’re going to be okay,” he said. Why would he say that? I wasn’t worried about being okay until then. They set up an IV and gave me something. I nodded off between contractions. They got closer and closer. “It hurts.” “I know,” the nurse said. “No, you don’t…Jesus.” “Almost there,” she said. “Shut up.” “Slow and easy,” she said. I tried to go slow and easy, but everything was happening too fast. I needed to know what was going on, but everyone was busy doing their things. “Get a bassinette in here,” the doctor said. The nurse left and came back with a bassinette. Tayla held my hand. “You’re doing fine…” “Not right now.” “Okay…holy shit” “Push,” said the doctor — so I pushed. “Again.” I pushed again. “Again.” And I pushed again. I felt the baby’s head come loose. “Push,” said the doctor. I pushed, and the shoulders came free. The rest slithered out like an eel. The doctor caught it and immediately handed it off to the nurse. “You have a little boy,” the doctor said. He helped me clear the placenta and let me doze on the table. “So little,” Tayla said.

When they handed me my son, I cried. This was nothing like I imagined. This was a wild kind of magic no one had ever told me about. I had a son. I was a mother. What next? How was I supposed to do this?

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    Comfortable Madness William L. Alto

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    Dedication For Lisa, who showed me

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    still the only teacher who let me g

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    I reached for his face, but it was

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    the curb. I smoked and paced, and I

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    med thing? Was this the start of an

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    Science and Spirit They made physic

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    Target I was neither the biggest ki

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    Crossing the Line In English, we ta

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    Episode Voices and faces bubbled ou

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    God Porn Four girls stood in front

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    Lunch Color drained away except for

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    Telling Secrets Miss Tris sat with

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    Water I danced and Tayla played. Ta

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    “We have to do something,” Miss

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    Insomnia Sun rise. Jays screamed in

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    Love and Madness Our bed was old. K

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    Someday Queertopia was the last tab

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    There were no words. There were no

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    Voices and Visions Night. Everythin

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    Answered Questions Tayla sat in the

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    A Thing Homecoming. I didn’t want

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    I backed away. People were really s

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    Tayla rolled over and looked at me.

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    Delusions I was too cold. White air

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    Room A creek ran on the edge of tow

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    Questions Water dribbled through a

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    Show Folks came through the door, t

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    gathered in his fists and face. I s

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    “I love you,” he said. Was this

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    Spells in the Corner The music was

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    Silence. We looked at Tad. He shrug

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    The Mormons stumbled and turned. Th

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    “I understand,” Tayla said. “

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    PE I watched the game without watch

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    He got off the couch and came to me

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    Tayla grunted in her sleep. I didn

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    I didn’t know that for sure. Gid

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    How do you explain what it was like

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    Air seemed to slice through me. Par

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    Glass The room was mine. The walls

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    “I love you,” she said. Sweet w

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    “Turn away from sin,” he shoute

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    down and grabbed my arm. He hauled

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    Secrets Sadness verged on depressio

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    Real Enough Orion hung in the south

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    Escape Tayla and Angie took me to t

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    We crouched behind a hedge. The cop

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    Shit Follows Voices told me to run.

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    “You’re dying,” he said. Spot

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    Emergency Darkness. Thick, vast and

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    Friends Miss Tris and Tad came with

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    At the corner, I sat in a hard chai

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    Awkward Everyone stared at Angie an

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    The Dead On the edge of sleep, just

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    Real and Not Real Visiting hours st

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    I stared at the trees on the other

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    Home Part of me thought things woul

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    He was a wall of bone and muscle. H

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    She came back to the bathroom. “I

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    Tayla put on Duke Ellington. We hel

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    gulped down. That was it. This was

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    Worry Broken leg. Broken ribs. Disl

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    “She hates me,” I said, soundin

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    Soon I knew things. I knew someday

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    Open Communication Pain and oxy str

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    Tayla gave her the finger. I grinne

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    “You’ll make it,” Tad said. I

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    Love Oxy made everything okay. Not

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    Things Come Out “Sweet Jesus,”

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    Fight For days, we fought but we fo

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    “Really?” she asked. The word h

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    An old man stopped. He looked from

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    Faith There he was. Gid. In the win

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    The First Shot Queertopia. Tayla, r

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    Always and Forever I dreamed of lig

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    Temptation Last call. The stage emp

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    Empty Promises It started. But then

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    Gifts Music lifted into the air, br

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    Object of Admiration Mr. Skarey cal

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    Black birds came from the corners.

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    This Body I dreamed of music, compl

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    Miracles I was late. I was never la

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    laughing. I had nothing to laugh ab

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    “You’re talking religion,” Co

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    Tayla’s drawn face tore at me.

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    This Is Love First, I saw his hands

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    Making Sure Posters of smiling wome

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    Something Hard and Sad Rain fell li

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    Looking Forward Dance team girls ga

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    Closet Water stains made dark masks

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    “You okay?” he asked. “Fine,

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    “The baby! Jesus, the baby!” So

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    “I love you,” Gid said. He went

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    “You’re not a guy,” he said.

  • Page 193 and 194: Heavy Music and movement. I spun an
  • Page 195 and 196: It felt as if my skin were going to
  • Page 197 and 198: “They did nothing to you,” Gid
  • Page 199 and 200: I smiled a fake smile. Tayla watche
  • Page 201 and 202: “Really,” I said. “They can s
  • Page 203 and 204: I closed my eyes. “Let’s go,”
  • Page 205 and 206: “What’s up?” she asked. “Te
  • Page 207 and 208: I smoked and waited. Tayla came and
  • Page 209 and 210: Waiting I danced. I danced and hope
  • Page 211 and 212: The Talk “What’s his name?” T
  • Page 213 and 214: Almost a Victim I sat on the floor
  • Page 215 and 216: pushing his fingers into my pie and
  • Page 217 and 218: “She thinks I cheated,” I said.
  • Page 219 and 220: “You know better.” Suddenly, I
  • Page 221 and 222: “You know,” she said. “No one
  • Page 223 and 224: “No,” I said. “Yes. And other
  • Page 225 and 226: “I know.” Her fingers squeezed
  • Page 227 and 228: That put an end to it.
  • Page 229 and 230: “What happens,” I asked, “if
  • Page 231 and 232: didn’t trust her because they ass
  • Page 233 and 234: “Have you thought of adoption?”
  • Page 235 and 236: “I have some newborn clothes here
  • Page 237 and 238: Safe Dead folks filled the room wit
  • Page 239 and 240: Consequences Mr. Skarey’s office
  • Page 241 and 242: A Domestic Moment I lay on the bed
  • Page 243: Birth It started with a rush of wat
  • Page 247: He fought with me, but there was a