On Being a Mother
Children, Stress and Mental Health

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

70-something readers often ask me how I decide what to write about.  Answer:  I don’t know.  I write what’s on my mind.  Some days I can’t decide what to write.  Like the other day.  Two things happened that were possible topics.
1. My friend Sheila.  Forty-six years ago, I shared an office with a younger young woman named Sheila.  We spent a lot of time laughing (and working).  As I entered the ninth month of my first pregnancy, we spent a Friday afternoon talking about possible male and female names. Sheila suggested “Seth” for a boy.  To me it sounded strong and unlikely to evoke a silly nickname.  Peter liked it too.
A boy it was, and Sheila’s baby gift was a set of book nameplates that said “Ex Libris Seth David Kugel”.  
Sheila lives in Arizona now and recently, we re-connected after many years.  She was in Boston for a day on her way to Turkey and we met for a quick coffee at the Harvard Art Museum.  Thanks to Facebook, I recognized her by her purple-streaked hair.  Needless to say, a lot of water has gone under the bridge since May, 1970 when we had the name-choosing conversation. But it could have been yesterday.  She hasn’t changed except for the gray part of her purple-streaked hair.
2.  Sex.  The other possible topic was inspired by a copy of The Harvard Independent, a free student newspaper I picked up in the Harvard Science Center where I had popped in to use the ladies room.  I’m sure I never saw that paper before, and normally I wouldn’t bother with it.  But in bold letters on the first page, it screamed THE SEX ISSUE.  I tucked it into my bag.  

I took it out to read on the bus ride home, but folded it up when I realized that a 70-something reading THE SEX ISSUE on a bus might be quite a spectacle.  It was definitely an eye-opener, but not a topic for my blog, I decided.  I re-cycled the newspaper before Peter saw it.

And...I decided to write about Sheila.


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