Article

Brain Fog

conversations with hank

 

Me: (staring at my computer, curser blinking, concentrating)

Hank: What’s wrong, my mama?

Me: (deep breath) I am just super frustrated at my brain. I don’t know if it is my new medications or what, but my brain isn’t working like I’m used to.

Hank: What do you mean?

Me: My brain is foggy.

Hank: Foggy?

Me: It feels like my brain is filled with thick, gray fog and when I try to concentrate or try to remember things it is very challenging because I can’t see through the fog to find what I am looking for. (pressing my palms to my eyes)

Hank: (rubbing my back) I am sorry.

Me: (throwing my arm around Hank) Thank you, buddy.

Hank: What are you trying to remember? Can I help?

Me: I am having problems remembering our conversations from today. I wanted to get one written down before I go to bed, but they are all lost in my brain fog. (deep breath) It’s alright, Hank. You don’t have to worry.

Hank: I am not worried. I don’t want you to worry. You just need to relax. Relax and take a cold shower. A cold shower will break up the brain fog because the fog is because your brain is kinda hot. How foggy is your brain, very foggy or kinda foggy?

Me: Very foggy.

Hank: Then you need to take a 30 minute cold shower.

Me: 30 minutes?!?

Hank: Or as long as it takes until your feel un-foggy. That is just what you need and you can write down this conversation for the blog and I will draw you a picture. And from now on you need to write down our conversations in your sketchbook like you used to and everything will be fine.

Me: (deep breath) That sounds like a plan. Thank you, Hank.

Hank: No problem. Love you. I’ll go draw now. Do you need any other help?

Me: Nope. (typing up this conversation) You have helped me tremendously. Thanks for being on my team.

Hank: Team Hanford & Pereira!

Me: (smiling)

Article

Growing Up

conversations with hank

 

 

Hank: May I be excused to go get a glass of water?

Pai: You may.

Me: I am sorry we forgot your water glass when we set the table.

Hank: (from the kitchen) It’s fine. I don’t mind. (returning)

Pai: Do you need anything else before we get started?

Hank: Nope.

Molly: (screeching, fists full of black beans)

Me: I am really proud of your level of responsibility, Hank.

Hank: (chewing)

Me: It makes me really excited about the future.

Hank: Because someday I will run the world with my friends?

Pai: (shocked coughing, snickering)

Me: There is that, but mostly because ever since you were born I have had one goal: to raise an adult I want to spend time with. Love is the easy part. I am always going to love you, but I want you to be the kind of adult that I genuinely want to spend time with even if you weren’t my kid.

Hank: That is a good goal and I promise that even when I am eleven I am going to want to hold your hand and if when I am thirteen I don’t you have someone else in this family who will hold your hand.

Me: Who? Your papa?

Pai: I like holding your mãe’s (mom’s) hand.

Hank: Yes, papa and Molly, too.

Me: (to Pai and Molly) Do not take this the wrong way, but even though I am blessed in the strolling hand in hand department, no one will ever replace you Hank.

Pai: Not at all offended. I get it.

Molly: (systematically squishing black beans)

Hank: (reaching over to squeeze my hand)

 

Guest Artist: Irina

Article

Gossip

conversations with hank

 

 

(This conversation was originally in Portuguese, but for convenience I have translated it. It is important to know that the word Hank used in Portuguese to describe Jasmim is “doido” which is a very strong, negative form of crazy.)

 

Me: (in the kitchen, overhearing)

Hank: You know Jasmim? He’s crazy.

Irina: I know.

Euclides: (chewing)

Hank: He doesn’t sit still. He was standing up in the car! He…

Me: (walking in) Is Jasmim here?

Hank:

Irina:

Euclides:

Me: Is he here now?

Hank: No.

Me: Do you think that Jasmim would like it if you called him crazy? Is that kind?

Hank: No.

Me: If Jasmim were here would you call him crazy?

Hank:

Irina:

Euclides: (shaking his head, smiling)

Me: Would you?

Hank: No.

Me: Never say anything about someone that you would not say to their face. Especially when they aren’t here to defend themselves. Jasmim isn’t here and trust me no matter who you are speaking to your words will travel back and hurt Jasmim or whomever you are talking about. Gossip travels fast. Be careful with your words, right Euclides? I know when I was 13 everyday was another drama about who said what about this person or that person.

Euclides: It is true.

Me: Hank, Irina do not make this a habit.

Irina: Ok.

Hank: Ok.

Euclides: Yes , but Jasmim is three years old.

Me:

Hank: He is.

Irina: Yes.

Me: Well… um… (backtracking) then he especially cannot defend himself. Of course it isn’t really gossip to speak about the behavior of a three year old, but “doido” (crazy) is a very strong word, don’t you agree? Especially for a baby that is still learning. How would you feel if someone called Molly a doida (crazy)?

Hank: I wouldn’t like it.

Me: Just be careful with your words and your intentions, ok everyone?

Euclides: (nodding)

Hank: Ok. Sorry, mama.

Irina: Sure.