Wednesday, March 16, 2005

The Ninja Turtles have left the premises.

My son is 24 years old, has long red hair, and many tatoos, several in places I've not seen in years. He was a precious, sensitive, loving child, a troubled snarly teen, and now a precious, sensitive, loving, occasionally snarly, young man. Did I mention that he's single?

I've made several posts about his sweet sensitivity as a child. Here's yet another.

The local newspaper headline was about a terrible fire in a tiny town just a little north of us. A family's home had burned to the ground, and the community was asking for help for the family, who had lost everything. A mother, a father, and two little boys.

As a family, we always hopped to it when such appeals were made. I gathered dishes and blankets and outgrown clothing, and slid my wristwatch off into the box for the mother. Hub called the phone number in the paper and asked if they still needed furniture, and then went down into the family room to search the cushions of the sofa, loveseat, and chair we would give them, for loose change, candy wrappers, and potentially embarassing anythings. Belle wasn't home on this evening, but Zappa stood watching us with wide eyes.

Finally, he asked me a question.

"Mommy, did those two little boys' toys all burn up in the fire?"

I had to tell him the truth. "Yes, honey, everything they had burned up."

He turned and walked away.

The family's church friends came to our house, with a big truck. We loaded the furniture and the boxes of kitchen and bedroom goods into it, and stood in the driveway talking for a moment.

I sensed a presence behind me. I turned, and there was Zappa, standing there with a huge Ninja Turtle air balloon, a box of assorted Turtles, and his Nintendo.

"Can I give these to those two little boys?" he asked.

"Are you sure you want to give them away? These are your favorite toys, honey."

"Well, Mommy, those little boys don't have ANY, and I still have some. And if these are my favorites, then I know those little boys will like them too, right?"

He put his boxes into the big truck, and watched it go down the driveway and up to the road.

I will never forget the look on his beautiful freckly face.

And, for the first time in my life, I understood why Jo March cried, after selflessly giving away her precious hair.

Zappa hasn't changed much, except that now he's nearly seven feet tall. Sometimes he's snarly, but mostly he's that same sweet sensitive boy who gave away his Turtles and his Nintendo, because two little boys he had never seen in his life didn't have anything to play with.

And ladies, let me remind you once again: He's still single.

Worthy candidates only, please.
Posted by Mamacita (The REAL one) @ 9:56 PM | |


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