Number One Wish

The first floor was an

interesting place to stay

when everybody

could hear the endless roar

coming from

my mother

and my father.



my maternal grandmother

passed away.

We were next in line to

take her apartment.


I was not aware my father

wouldn’t be joining


and my mother

in the move.


I didn’t know about divorce.

I assumed my dad was

living at my old house,

so we could keep

both of them.


I didn’t know what

divorce was

mainly because

in my childhood readings

the princess always found her

prince charming

and there always was

a happy ending and


I was six

and I was forced

into family therapy

baffled by the situation


Because I didn’t

know why mommy

was crying

and why daddy

was shouting

and why nobody

told me what

was happening.


I would talk to my


with two happily married


and I would try

to explain my situation

and they would look



Because just like me,

they were seven

year olds who only

knew of the storybook



I don’t remember when I learned,

but I remember a series

of conversations

in the fourth grade

that allowed for me

to talk to a friend.


“It’s happening,

The divorce.”

By that point I knew.


Since then, whenever

someone has asked me

what I wish for

if a genie’s lamp

appeared on my doorstep

or if I were to throw a coin

down a well


I would always

silently say

to have my parents

back together again

with ultimate happiness.


Because their happiness

would bring family outings

and a sense of normal conversation

when I bring up one of their



But as much as I want

for the conversations to occur

and those family outings to happen,

eventually my dad

may find his princess,

and my mother will find

her prince charming.


It just won’t be

the storybook family.


Now my parents

both have other love


love interests I may

not be entirely thrilled

with, but

they won’t replace

my biological counterparts.


But if they were still together,

havoc would


Havoc would —

the bickering I heard

when I was young,

would have exponentially

grown worse and

they wouldn’t be happy and


Maybe in the future I will have

not one but two mothers

and two fathers.


And a set will lie

on the seventh floor

in the apartment we

inherited from my grandmother,

and another will be on

a different first floor

without screams and shouts.


So I am changing

my wish.

I thought my original wish

of bringing my parents together

would bring happiness.

But now that I understand

the reasonings for divorce,

I can’t say that it would.


I have a wish for my parents:

I want them to be

radiant and joyful.

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