Sunday, June 28, 2015

Mommy, I don't like this

1.      Cookie Rescue

Mommy, I don’t like this (prompt from WritersDigest May/June 2015)

“Mommy, I don’t like this.”  Riley squirmed in her back car seat and threw the blueberry popsicle to the floor.  Diane, harried with rush hour traffic, glanced through the rear view mirror at her frowning daughter.

“Okay, honey.  We’ll be home soon and I’ll fix mac n’ cheese for you. Okay?”

No, it was not okay.  Riley let out a frustrated howl.  Diane, her tense stomach tightening, turned around. As she did, her car slammed into a cab stopped at the light. 

Minutes later, Riley was screaming and Diane was tapping 911 into her phone.  The cab driver came out of his dented cab, carrying an open bag of Oreo cookies.  Approaching Diane’s rolled down window he waved the cookies toward her crying toddler.  “Betcha, she’d like a cookie, huh?”

Diane said a quick prayer of thanks and nodded with a tired smile at her new best friend, Shelley, the cab driver.

“Here, honey.” She cooed as she moved from her seat to undo Riley’s seat belt and pick her up with a hug.  “Look at this yummy treat.”

Riley sucked in her last sob and held out her sticky hands for the cookie.

“Oh, Mommy, I like this.”

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Keeping the Red Nose Day message alive

Although the official Red Nose Day has come and gone (5/21), I was so touched by many of the stories shared on the telethon that I see merit in keeping its message alive.  Whether it was the family in Chicago going to the local food pantry, or the orphan on the streets (interviewed by actor/comedian Jack Black) in Africa, the sight of children hungry, sick, lost and alone breaks my heart.

Maybe it is my Grandmother Dice's voice in my head reminding me to think about others who have less than I have; or my Grandad Dice's admonition when we left their farmhouse home after our frequent visits: "if you can't be great, be good."

I think I gave up trying to be great after college.  In the early 1970s, my focus was on just trying to find a place (somewhere warmer than northern Illinois) where I could plant my own roots and thrive.  Unexpectedly, Tucson became that place.  And, in addition to establishing my life (home, family, career) here, it's the center of the community work I continue to be "called" to do. 

But I live in a broader world, too.  So while I contribute as a volunteer and donor to local causes, I also am open to those that touch my heart. does that for me right now.  And maybe you will open your heart to their message, also.  We need to take better care of our children, however we can.  Even a hug today to a child in your life will make a difference.