I was six years old, captured in a photograph with my family one Sunday morning outside church. My father was running for public office, and there we were in our Sunday best — literally. We were quite the image of ‘Candidate’s Family.’ There’s my dad, the earnest young man, the contender. There’s my mom — complete with Sandra Dee flip — fully looking the part of faithful helpmeet. There’s my sister, six months old, already shaping her face of beligerence as she scowls at the camera. And my brother, looking sly and pleased, as though he’s done something he shouldn’t and has kept it secret. And finally … there I am, six years old, hair wrestled into a demure set of waves and curls, little white gloves covering fretting hands, a frown on my first-grader face. Yes, six years old and already fraught with tension.


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