Tuesday, September 18, 2012

...The Month That Was

...and so here's where I've been these past few weeks.

Saturday the 1st...

My wife and I were enjoying a quiet evening on the couch, taking advantage of our children's decision to join some friends at the local park, catching up on past episodes of Storage Wars.  Other than sharing an occasional giggle at the antics of Dave Hester and Daryl Sheets, we spoke little.

We were granted nearly an hour before the creak of our screen door and a yip from our lab, allowed us a moment to prepare for the kids return.  

I continued watching the final seconds of an episode where Barry Weiss spent a week's salary on a storage locker full of Good Will items from 1985, when a shadow the size of a small cumulus cloud spread across the ceiling.  I felt my wife's grip tighten around my wrist.  I turned with a start to find not only my teenage son, but three of his high school buddies from the football team, standing at the entrance of our living room, wearing only their underwear.  

Two pairs of Hanes briefs, one set of loose-fitting boxers, and an embarrassing pair of whitey-tighties that would've been snug for my ten year old daughter.

They stood in a single file row, failing to make eye contact, three out of four blushing from the neck up.

A moment later my younger son bounded into the room, fully clothed, cradling his basketball, offering a grin that would've made The Joker envious.

"Okay, so...what did we miss?" my wife asked.

I considered the ball in my twelve year old's hands, read the expression on his face, and offered a guess.

"Lose a bet to your little brother?" I asked the scantily clad teens.

I was granted a nod, then turned to my younger son, The Hoopster.

"So how far was the shot?"

He answered in a burst.  "Half court!  They said if I made it, they'd walk home in their skivvies...I nailed it on the first try!"

"You boys walked home...like that?" my wife asked, shoulders trembling with laughter.

A collective nod.

"And guess what, Dad!" Young Hoopster added.  "A bunch of girls drove by!"

...a week later, I sat in front of my rough draft of "The Fall,"  glaring at words on a screen, when a thought caused me to open a second tab for my email.  In minutes I drummed out a short letter to fellow writer Anne Gallagher, The Piedmont Writer, (here's her blog,  http://piedmontwriter.blogspot.com/, and here's her book, http://www.amazon.com/Remembering-You-a-novel-ebook/dp/B0083IDAU8 , it's good, check it out ;) asking her where she continues to find those beautiful covers for her stories.  

Being the pal she is, she offered her assistance, and within days, working alongside my son, (now fully clothed,) we found the perfect cover shot for my upcoming shorty.  

Anne, a weight's been lifted.  I can't thank you enough ;)

It was last week, while sitting behind my desk at the dayjob, when a call came in from home.  I glanced at the time, considered what day of the week it was, and thought, "She's calling about another kid."  

(My wife and I are foster parents.)

I released a sigh, lifted the phone from it's receiver.  

"Hi Hon."

Nothing.  I recognized her breathing, short stressful huffs, as if fighting to catch her breath.  

I waited a moment longer, then asked, "Okay, who is it?"

"He's only four days old."

"What?  Four days?  A boy?"

"Yes...and yes."

"What's wrong with him?"

"He's losing too much weight.  His birth mom...well, so anyway, he's just a baby."

"Yeah, I figured that much."

"Well, what do you think?"

I grinned at my hulking computer monitor, a spread sheet I'd been working on for three days, due the day prior, not worth the ink it would soon be printed on, thinking how life can change on a dime.  One day your laughing at your teenage son's rotten luck, and the next...

"What do I think?  I think you already said yes, and that little boy's on his way to the house this very minute..."

In two weeks under my wife's care, the newest member of our family saw his weight match, then surpass his birth weight, receiving an avid thumbs up from our doctor.  He's well on his way...

So that was my month, how was yours?  

El ;)


E.J. Wesley said...

Boys and brothers! Glad I got to be both growing up. This story took me back. :-D

Carolyn V said...

Congrats for the new member of your family! So glad he's doing better in your care.

And I cracked up at the bet your sons made. lol. Priceless.

Anne Gallagher said...

You are such a peach El, thanks for the shout out. I'm always happy to help a fellow writer.

Love the basketball story. Two thumbs up.

And you are just so wonderful for taking in that baby. I'm so glad he found you and your family.

Do you still have the rest of the posse? All the boys (the brothers) and the 'girl'?

Elliot Grace said...

Hey E.J, agreed! Those were the days ;)

Hey Carolyn, as they say, boys will be boys.

Hey Anne, I thought highly of those boys, manning up to their part of the wager, when they could have simply shrugged off a bet made with a skinny twelve year old.

As for the posse, long story short, last year's group has moved on...either adopted or sent home. New year, new posse. Cute kids ;)


Roland D. Yeomans said...

Anne is a gem. The wee baby has hit the jackpot for foster parents with you and your wife. And the lost bet? Priceless! :-)

Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting. I've missed you, Roland

Lola Sharp said...

Awww, I love your wife, she's full of heart and she's my kind of people...and you too. I'm happy, though not surprised, that the baby is doing well under your care. <3

And, hey, at least the boys didn't squelch on the bet. They'll be laughing about the time they walked home in the underwear for the rest of their lives. Your younger son, the one with the mad baller skillz, has a proud moment to look back on. :)

I hope this month brings you even more adventure, E!

Donna Hole said...

OMG: they really walked home like that? And were passed by girls? Priceless indeed, lol.

My month has been hectic, but ya know, if it were manageable I'd be bored :) I did manage to accomplish some things I felt good about, so all in all Sept hasn't been too bad . .

4 days old is so tiny. I'm glad he lucked out with your family for care and nourishment. And I'm sure that sense of accomplishment has to be fulfilling. - despite the upheaval such a small package can create in your daily life.

Have you gotten any sleep lately?

Have a good weekend Elliot, and give your wife a pat on the back for all her dedication :)


The Golden Eagle said...

It sounds like you had an exciting month! Both stories were amazing--if the first a bit more humorous. :)

Cally Taylor said...

Ha! What a brilliant forfeit for losing the dare. Bet your wife didn't know where to look!

mshatch said...

omg, that story of the bet, hilarious! I'll wager older brother won't be making any new bets any time soon, lol.

and a baby, too! Glad he's gaining :)

Alleged Author said...

That was hilarious. I bet your son will never make a bet with his little brother again. :)

Following you now as well!

Elise Fallson said...

Hilarious and heartwarming all rolled into one post. You've had one heck of a month. Glad your newest member of the family is doing well, and glad the boys didn't catch colds. :)

Adeeva Afsheen said...

Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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