“Write hard and clear about what hurts,” said Ernest Hemingway. In order to tell you about myself, I need to tell you what hurts me most to write about.

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The author and her son smelling flowers on Mother’s Day 2019. Photo: Author.


We spent months complaining about his spine to doctors. I trusted my colleagues beyond question. It was a terrible mistake.

Two side-by-side MRI images of the author’s 15 month old son. His spine is severely curved and his head tilted.
Two side-by-side MRI images of the author’s 15 month old son. His spine is severely curved and his head tilted.
The first MRI image of our son’s spine at 15 months old that showed severe Infantile Scoliosis. Image by Author.


The author’s ancestors in a black and white photograph taken as a seated portrait.
The author’s ancestors in a black and white photograph taken as a seated portrait.
The author’s great-grandfather, Eugene (bottom center), surrounded by his parents and family in Pforzheim, Germany, circa 1907. Photo: Author.


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Screenshot from New York Times opinion article “The Losses We Share” by Meghan Markle. Screenshot: Author.


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Screenshot from Ashley C. Ford’s story titled “What Did ‘Seventeen’ and ‘Dawson’s Creek’ Do To Me?” Screenshot: Author.

Ashley Riley

PNW video creator, digital film storyteller, and writer. MA in social policy. BA in political science. Stay-at-home mom and wife. ashelizabethriley@gmail.com

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