How strange it is, the first time you put your mother’s sock on for her, tie her shoe. You came here to do these things, knew they were coming — had envisioned this very act, even — but still it surprises you. The world shifts. You roll up the cotton sock and within it is her vulnerability, which you don’t like to think of as her (oh god) mortality, which you don’t like to associate with your own (oh god) mortality. You’re tiny at her feet like a child, tightening the laces, bunny ears through bunny ears. A little looser, she says. There we go. Perfect. How quickly it becomes ordinary, just another thing to do before you leave the house together.