by Lily Casura
Seventeen years ago Wednesday, I knelt on a carpeted floor in a rented Seattle apartment, tilting a carrot cake I’d just finished baking and decorating with a big numeral “1” in grated carrots, with a single candle – towards a toddler I’ll call Eli, wobbly and uncertain on his feet, supported by his mother’s protective grasp.
On Wednesday, Eli turns eighteen years old. His mother’s whereabouts are long unknown, but for my part, I’m not-so-secretly celebrating his entrance to adulthood. “Three more days!” I write on his wall on Facebook (where we are friends), as though he were coming into a million bucks on the day. Frankly, I’m just grateful that he lived to see it, because it wasn’t always certain that he would.
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