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I pulled on my favorite jeans, heard and felt the fabric tear, and saw skin peek from a brand-new hole in the faded denim. I surveyed the unforeseen damage: the fabric had become threadbare in so many places that patching or mending wasnt even a sensible option; thered be as many patches as original jeans.

Id been unaware of their gradual deterioration until the hole advertised the widespread decline. Ruefully, I folded my beloved jeans, softened by so much wear and so many washings, and laid them to rest in the lowest drawer of my bureau.

Lars was threadbare. We were each in varied stages of wear and tear. It started with a resounding rip, when Rayann carelessly fingered Lars as a molester. We each tried in our own way to mend the relatively small tears wed incurred, but more quickly than we could piece the edges together, more fabric was hacked, probed, stretched, and gouged, until we had all changed.

As far as I knew, everyones self-preservation instincts were intact. Maybe that was encased in the layers of fabric that form the seams. Maybe God placed our drive to live in a deeply embedded place, a place more protected than other parts of us. But was anyone invincible? I had strong doubts now.

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