In my younger and more existential days, the most innocuous of phrases—the ubiquitous “how are you,” for example—would cause rockets of nausea to crash in my belly. There was a time, to be sure, when I could answer “fine” with the best of them. Daily vomiting rapidly cured me of that.
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We reached the car, and I held the door open for him, but he didn't climb in right away. He stood there rocking on his crutch, gazing off at the sky and the fields and the fall trees starting to go the color of sherbet