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  • Writer's pictureRichmond Story House

Memories of a child

This post is a response from an incarcerated woman to a writing prompt about memories of a child.

My son was warm, sticky, and smelled of a sweet mix of olive oil (my midwife’s idea) and metallic iron found only in the scent of fresh blood - that’s my first memory of seeing the man that stole my heart. My son. He lay across my chest as I held him, kissed his slicked back hair, and inspected every wrinkle/red spot/fingernail. His hair was long I could tell, but freshly out of the womb I thought the curls was the texture - but no - after his first bath I saw the most beautiful LONG 6’ hair - ON MY NEWBORN! (I gave him a man bun on the 2nd day of life to keep his hair out of his face as we practiced the “nursing/latching on thing” again). His fingers were long with soft, flexible nails that wrapped/bent over the tips of his bony piano fingers/hands. I filed them the second we got to the maternity ward so he wouldn’t claw himself… His feet were 1000% his father’s… slender, long, and one massive big toe compared to the remaining 4 on each foot. Perfect pale tanned Greek skin. Jet black hair - which soon turned completely blonde - and gray eyes… with his right eye unfortunately bruised from his shoulder slamming into his eye socket down the long 4 DAY labor process we had… Just the midwife and I on his welcoming wagon… but loved more than a child who had 10 spectators in tow. My son’s father passed during our first trimester - but I knew he was still there… cowered in the corner of the room - I held up our son and said “thank you… you may have lied about everything/never keeping your promises - BUT you kept one - the most important one” (he made me the mom I waited for).

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