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It was the first time I felt what it was supposed to feel like to be in the arms of a woman, not the girls whose breath steamed my car on Saturday nights. But it was not her body I felt, though I liked the feel of it, it was not her sex, though I was aware of it. Rather, I felt myself longing for something I could never have, and I wanted her to take me back, fold me inside of herself as she’d folded Becky that afternoon. (page 431) 

This coming-of-age story shows how the a child deals with his life while only having a mother around. Throughout the story, Josh’s ego is very prominent. He consistently talks about how he has girls all over him and how they never stop staring. But yet, when it gets to a point where he is so vulnerable, he realizes that he has been missing something. The hug from Mrs. Lovenheim allows him to feel the sense of a mother that he may not have at home. The fact that he does not have a father figure in his life can be a reason why he felt like this. Due to his father’s death, he did not get the type of “fatherly advice” that, I guess, boys get from their fathers. But this moment with Mrs. Lovenheim felt, to him, like a moment that he has never had before. He felt the love that a mother gives to her son or a father gives to his son.

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