The Other Joy

I apologize for posting a day late. My husband and I were in San Antonio.

We drove for fourteen hours on Tuesday. I visited the Alamo, while my husband attended his work conference. I also bought coffee for an apparent homeless woman and refused a date from an apparently homeless man. I then learned to avoid eye contact with the locals.

We then drove home last night.

So, today, barely awake, I thought I would share an old story from 2001 when Elder would have been five and Isaiah would have been two…

My mom had a little cabinet that was the perfect size for a small television and a Nintendo. She offered it to us but we had never managed to retrieve it from her basement.

So, Sunday, a few weeks ago, she set it in the driveway and, when I stopped by the house to pick up some disks, Elder begged me to grab his shelf. Grunting a little, I manhandled the cabinet into my trunk, telling myself to not forget the thing as I had very little extra room left.

So, I promptly forgot the thing, of course.

Monday, as I exited Wal-Mart and meandered through the parking lot looking for our misplaced car, I remembered it. Mumbling under my breath, I stuffed as many shopping bags around, behind, and in it as I could. Slamming the trunk, I shoved the remaining bags into my front seat. Then I wheeled my shopping cart into the proper area, remembering to grab Younger from the seat.

As we returned to the car, I noticed the handles on one plastic bag flapping in the wind, caught in the trunk. Too tired to worry with it, I settled Younger into his seat and explained to Elder what I had done.

“But, Mom,” he protested when I slid beneath the wheel, leaving the plastic to flap behind us. “Someone might see it and laugh.”

“Well, at least we’ll have brought some joy into their lives,” I told him sourly.

“Mom,” he said, curiously. “Who’s Joy?”

And for one of the few times that day, I laughed. Elder is my own personal plastic handles flapping from someone’s trunk. In other words, he brings joy into my life.

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