Thursday, March 17, 2016


Not quite six o'clock when I pull up in front of the house tonight.

Son #1 is just getting out of his car. I have not seen him much recently-- he works from 3 - 12 every night and I am usually in bed when he comes in. Today is his day off. I hope for dinner together. Maybe I can even con him into watching a little television, instead of retreating to his room, like he does so regularly lately.

We walk into the house together and I comment on the license plates on his"new-to-him" car. He tells me they were $166. Pretty much half his salary for the week.

I ask if he wants dinner. "I have ground beef thawed," I say. "I could make hamburgers, or spaghetti," I say.

"I'm going to the movies," he says.

I am surprised. This has been a hard, hard year for my son, and aside from work, he hardly ever goes anywhere. Mostly he stays in his room, listening to music or playing video games. If he does go anywhere, it's usually with his brother, and usually to pursue habits that I consider less than acceptable.

"You are?" I say. "With who?"

"A girl from work. T---," he says.

"Really? That's great Zay," I say, fighting to stay casual. "What are you going to see?"

He names a movie I have never heard of. "At Northfield?" I say.


"So tell me about T. How old is she?"

"I don't know." He is a little irritable. "I'll find out that stuff tonight."

He goes to his bedroom and shuts the door. I wait a few minutes then knock. "Do you want a hamburger before you go?"

He does, and I hurriedly cook a burger that he wraps in a paper towel and carries out the door.

"Have fun," I say. "Be careful. I love you"

And then he is gone.

And I am so glad, after a year of broken dreams, and a bi-polar diagnosis, and two hospital stays, and struggles with addiction, and endless days at a low-paying, menial job, that he is finally going out to do something fun.

Have a great time, my sweet guy. Have a great time.


Mandy said...

Carol, I loved the line when you mention trying to stay casual in your reaction. It was so nice to read your son had a date and then your ending, gave way more meaning to this piece and had me reread your slice. I hope his evening was fun and light hearted.

Unknown said...

What a touching post. I hope it goes well for him.

elsie said...

Everyone needs a bit of fun in their life. This life has had more than its share of bumps in the road. Hope it was a good night for all.

Michelle Li said...

I love that you made him a hamburger and he said he carried it on a paper towel! Rooting for your guy.

Karen said...

I'm sorry this has been such a difficult year for your son. Hopefully, this night of fun and movies will be a positive step for him.

Mary Lee said...

A ray of hope...