Since much grows in mud, not in spite of mud, I'm making a life out of my little failures. Stepmom has something hopeful about it, but although I'm a step, I don't think I'm a mom. I did buy into the therapist's advice, to think of myself as a bonus mom. Bonus as in optional, right, like in a quiz? I always give extra items to make sure the kids do good. They say I'm an easy A. My biology was the topic, when the therapist asked what about you. I said there are enough things to birth and mother in this world. My task since was to let myself believe it. First step: give a hundred dollars a month for drinking water in Africa, because the charity's millennial founder said water is the only binary thing left in the world and I fell in love with this idea. How else to get clear choices, but to measure what is potable or not. If some grieved the village girls who so bereft took their lives after dropping the water jars miles from their homes, it was their mothers I couldn't forget, having lost what's precious twice. I must have been feeling the opposite, a grief for what didn't exist. If I cannot name what's lost how can I emerge from mourning? When I see the village cut the ribbon to a new water well I let myself be rinsed in their unambiguous joy.