Nadav Spiegelman

My Name Is Lucy Barton

Elizabeth Strout
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In third grade I read a book that made me want to write a book.
The doctor held my wrist to take my pulse, and when he gently lifted my hospital gown, in order to check the scar, as he did each day, I watched his hands, thick-fingered and lovely, his plain gold wedding band glinting, pressing gently on the area near the scar, and he looked into my face to see if it hurt. He asked by raising his eyebrows, and I’d shake my head. The scar was healing nicely. “Healing nicely,” he said, and I said, “Yes, I know.”
The dentist provided free care in a manner that was ungenerous, both in time and manner, as though he hated us for being who we were, and I worried the entire time once I heard I would have to see him.
There are days when I feel I love him more than I did when I was married to him, but that is an easy thing to think—we are free of each other, and yet not, and never will be.