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scottn
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PostSubject: Hide and Seek   Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:38 am


Hide and Seek
By Scott Newport

”Oli, Oli, oxen free!” Remember that ol’ saying? It was yelled when a player of the game, “Hide and Seek” was not able to find all that were hiding. Here is a story where I found something I wasn’t searching for, at least not on the outside.

A couple of weeks back, it snowed all day here in Michigan. It was the
first big snow of the year. The weatherman announced we had about 10
inches on the ground when it was all said and done. It was a Sunday,
so there was no school or work. For at least that day the harsh, grey
conditions of winter would be hidden away and covered by a magical
blanket of white powder.

During the course of the day, Noah and I cleared the drive and sidewalk after which we went sledding, with a friend, at our local park. We even took time to help a couple of our neighbors whose cars were stuck. Working and having fun was a great opportunity for a father and son to spend time together. Penni stayed inside and took care of Evan and all his medical needs. Occasionally I would see her bright face peak out the window to see what was going on.

When it was time to come inside Noah and I entered the side door of our home and took off layers of clothes encrusted with hunks of snow. After kicking off our boots we both immediately cornered Penni and told “our” side of the story of who really won the snowball fight and who had gone the farthest on the hill. She smiled graciously as she listened to both of us.

After settling in for the evening, my stomach reminded me that Noah and I had missed lunch. I soon forgot that thought when Penni yelled, "Come and get it!" which is her way of ringing the dinner bell at our home. It was time to eat
and I was so delighted to smell the familiar aroma of Penni's homemade
lasagna. I heard the slam of the metal oven door as Penni yelled again
for me to come up from the basement. I quickly pointed the remote toward the TV and turned the football game off. After running upstairs, I found myself first in line. Penni piled my plate with a large square of steaming lasagna and a hunk of warm Italian bread.

Noah came running in and was next. As I walked away, I could hear a
slice of lasagna hit Noah's plate. I couldn't help but feel loved when
Noah asked Penni, "Hey mom, why didn't I get a fork? You put one on
dad's plate and didn't do it for me. That's no fair."

Penni plainly replied, "Look son, you're a big boy now, you can do
some things yourself."

“Ah… mom,” Noah sighed while walking toward the silverware drawer.

You may not understand the importance of that dialogue. Family life
with a chronically ill kid, like Evan, is not always easy. Too often, daily life
is marked with an unkind word here or a bit of sarcasm there.
Sometimes it's hard to love. Many times there isn't even time for
love. Sometimes love is nowhere to be found. There is so much daily stress, so many things to do just to survive. I guess you could say it is like a game of hide and seek. And when you can’t find love that is hidden, you just give up.

But for me, that small gesture was like magic. When my wife
put a fork on my plate, it was like seeing her in a sweet dream,
blowing me a kiss as she winked. At that moment the love came out of hiding.

It was just a moment in time I had to grasp. It could have been so
easily missed, but I caught it. As I sat at the dinner table, eating
lasagna and watching the snow fall silently, I thought to myself,
"Yeah, she loves Noah and Evan, but I think today she loves me more."

At least that's the way I felt.




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Lora
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PostSubject: Re: Hide and Seek   Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:26 pm

Love the tie in with the hide and seek game, clever. It gives it that added punch. However, the story itself is such a good one, it can stand on its own. So the metaphor is like a little cherry on top. Nice work. You have an uncanny ability to make me cry with all of your stories.

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scottn
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PostSubject: Re: Hide and Seek   Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:57 am

Thanks Lora, for taking the time to read and also comment. I cry too. I guess it's good for all of us to allow emotions to come forth. There is nothing more engaging to watch someone proof read one of your pieces and see them tear up. A while back I had an ol timmer read one of my poems. Out of no where he started to tell me how he and his dad used to go collect ginsing in the hills of Kentucky, no one else in the family wanted to go. He said, " I just love doing that with my dad."

Kinda funny how this writing things works, eh?
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