Ready For What Is Ahead

Running out of weekend I ventured out for a Sunday evening jaunt to the Wally World amusement park known to some as Wal-Mart. What a madhouse! Most people whether alone, in a couple or a family group were in a big hurry with few smiles evident. Lots of grumpy people barking at each other, especially parents to children. The saddest faces I saw were on the kids. That bothered me.

Then there was the father who was talking to and amusing his little boy about a year old as he rode in the shopping cart. Slowing my speed intentionally to follow I enjoying listening to Dad trying to get the little guy to say “Da Da”. It didn’t happen while I was snooping, but with the concerted effort going into the prompting it’s just a matter of days before the kid starts and never stops making syllables. Listening to a toddler laugh is a special kind of music.

The there was a young couple pushing two carts. Dad had a little boy about three riding in his and Mom was carrying a baby about eight months old and pushing a cart. It was easy to tell from the woman’s baby bump another little one was on the way. Even with their hands full with two little kids while grocery shopping it was readily apparent Mother and Father loved each other and their children. It was on their faces and how they looked at one another. I saw their happiness  and was a little jealous for a moment. Even though I was a pretty good father to my son, given the chance today I would be far better.

The lines were long and not enough registers were open which happens often at the big box stores. I suppose they know once you have a cart of stuff most will wait their turn so they don’t have to do the gathering of stuff again at some other store. I stood in line for at least 10 minutes reading the latest issue of People which had a feature story on Tom Cruise. Three marriages, multiple relationships, two adopted children and one birth child have come into his life but none have stayed long-term. Seems sad to me to have so much and yet so little. Did you know his full name is Thomas Cruise Mapother IV? I didn’t until tonight.

My weekend has been good. The cooler temps, mostly cloudy skies and occasional rain made the time all the more special to me. Several hours were spent writing at my own pace and a good amount time was spent with friends, new and old. Reflecting now on the last two days it’s easy to comprehend how rich my life is. It’s not exactly what I wish and hope for in all ways, but it is good… damn good. I am thankful for what is and grateful for what will yet be. Each and everything I have experienced, good and bad, has made me more complete and ready for what is ahead; even my trip to Wally World!

Tonight I close my eyes and see
A strange procession passing me —
The years before I saw your face
Go by me with a wistful grace;
They pass, the sensitive, shy years,
As one who strives to dance, half blind with tears.
The years went by and never knew
That each one brought me nearer you;
Their path was narrow and apart
And yet it led me to your heart —
Oh, sensitive, shy years, oh, lonely years,
That strove to sing with voices drowned in tears.
Sara Teasdale