A group of parents and kids were sitting around five or six tables strung together at a seafood restaurant. They’d been at a sports tournament and the kids had on various versions of their team paraphernalia.
Most of the adults sat at one end of the long chain of tables. The kids instantly gravitated to the other, with the boys in the middle and girls on end.
As is usually the case, the girls were quietly enjoying themselves, but the boys, they were loud, excited and boisterous.
Whether by conscious decision or not, a mother was sitting in the middle between the adults and kids. She was actively involved in the conversations on the adult side, but at the same time, completely aware of the actions and antics of the eleven to twelve year old boys at the table with her. Continue reading An Inconspicuous Smile
The small boy was on red alert. He smelled the peculiar smoke coming from the bathroom where his mom kept a little pipe above the medicine cabinet.
He never knew how long it would last, but he did know it meant trouble. It was always the same, but always different.
He looked for food. There were no crackers or candy under her bed where she hid it, but he found a can of beans in the pantry. He desperately tried to open it before she got out of the bathroom, but his little fingers couldn’t manage to get the manual can opener to work.
He didn’t hear her coming out. It was too late by the time he did. Angry, she shoved him to the ground and threw the can of beans striking him squarely in his chest.
As he shrunk toward the door, grabbing the can in a frantic backward crawl, she lunged toward him, grabbing, jerking his skinny, little body across the floor. He was terrified. The kind afraid where you can’t breathe, can’t move, can’t cry. The kind where every second felt like a year. Continue reading Somewhere Near You
Three months ago. Saturday. 8:04 AM. Work rings. Never good. Answer phone.
“Dee’s mom called. His wife is a nurse and woke up and heard him gurgling. She called 9-1-1 and started CPR. They don’t know how long he was without oxygen. He’s at the ER now, but non-responsive.”
My heart sunk. We’d worked together 23 years. Dee’s a quality guy. I knew then I’d never see him again, not the same. At minimal, brain damage from oxygen deprivation would forever change him.
~~Something awakened Dee’s wife, Alanda, at 6:15 AM. She heard Dee gurgling from fluid filling his lungs. She flipped on the light, called 9-1-1 and started CPR.
Alanda saved Dee’s life. He’d crossed death’s doorway, but at the threshold, Alanda grabbed the tip of his little toe toenail and began pulling him back.
Five minutes later paramedics arrived. They took over CPR and used an AED.
One electrical shock to the heart. Two. Continue reading You Come From Good Stock
~~I was driving and a bluebird flew into my windshield today. Feathers went everywhere as the little guy toppled lifelessly in the road behind me. I feel terrible about it.
I think it went down like this:~~
Several months ago, Mr. and Mrs. Bluebird worked daylight to dusk to build a nest. Mr. Bluebird made sure the structure was strong enough for a brood of growing, rowdy chicks, while Mrs. Bluebird was sensational at finding just the right lining to keep her chicks comfortable.
Once the eggs were laid, Mrs. Bluebird took a two-week sabbatical to sit and keep the eggs warm.
When hatching day finally arrived, each egg started shaking within hours of each other. From inside the shell, each hatchling broke loose and used all of its energy to escape the hard shell. After breaking free, each hatching laid wet, exhausted and gasping for air. Continue reading Cobalt Didn’t Listen