Mixed Blessings

In the Month of May

Story and Photos by Desiré Aguirre

When my son Nik was nine, he and his friend Jackson trekked to the back ten of our old place, which we called the Samuels’ house, to Aguirre Island, in search of adventure. “Don’t go along the back fence,” I yelled, “it’s mired in muck.” No surprise that when Jackson found me in the garden pulling weeds thirty minutes later, the lower half of his body, coated in mud, made him look like some type of mutant cannibal.

“Nik’s stuck in the mud,” he shouted. “You have to come help.”

“Sounds like I’ll need my camera,” I said, getting up from my knees, my hands as dirty as Jackson was.

My brother Rex, who lived on the property with us, walked on the strip of dry land beside the bog and reached Nik’s outstretched hands, pulling him out of the mud before I got my photo. I still have the after photo of Jackson and Nik, mud buddies, grinning, Nik with only one shoe, the mud having consumed the other.

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Desiré Aguirre

About Desiré Aguirre

Desiré Aguirre lives in Sagle with an assortment of furry animals. Her favorite sport is riding her horse into the hills above her house. She is the editor of the Bereaved Parents of the USA’s Coeur d’Alene newsletter, and writes a health tips column for the Sandpoint Senior Center. She plays in the old- time string band, Ruff Shodd, and has a blog, “The Worst Day Club,” for bereaved parents at bereavedparents.blogspot.com.