Susie's 6 now, the age when grandmothers lose their magic. She's in first grade, she reads, she dances, she draws, she goes on play dates -- and I'm becoming peripheral to her life. Soon she'll join the other five, still loving but too busy for me; her eyes no longer lighting up when I appear. I'm left with the memory of the afternoon when we were "napping" together. Noting my sleeplessness, she reached over, hugged me, and said, "Here, Grandma, want my thumb?" An expression of love to last a lifetime.

Phyllis Leonard


Not one to talk to strangers after 27 years, I find strength in a 175-gram white plastic disc.

Glancing around to see who else hasn't mastered the art of waiting, I spy a man shifting on his heels, though his eyes won't commit to looking. I move toward him.

"If I pull a Frisbee out of my bag, would you throw it with me?" I ask timidly as we wait for the bus to refuel just off the Jersey Turnpike.

"Sure," he says with a shrug.

I dart to my bag with the full-grown grin of a child.

David Alexander

Silver Spring

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