I rarely spend one-on-one-without-a-purpose-time, with my children; I'm just too darn busy. I'm not proud of this but it's the truth. My husband has more opportunities to hang out with the kids. I often find him; playing catch or music with a kid or two, chit chatting with his girls or diligently working on the crossword puzzle with a child looking over his shoulder. I'm with the kids more hours in a day but he spends more quality time with them, it's a fair trade.
My son had half days this week and his sisters didn't, so I found myself with an open two hours, my boy and a beautiful day. We decided to go to our local nature preserve and take a walk We started our adventure around the pond, under a cloudless, hyacinth blue sky. The sun was warm but the breeze was cool. I needed my fleece, he stuck his hands in his pockets, not bothered by the chilly air.We stood at the edge of the pond hoping to see fish. I half listened as he explained the fishing pole he wants to make. Learning to fish is #3 on my bucket list, maybe we could learn together, I fantasized, a mom and her son, hooks and worms, tranquil rivers and sparkling light...blood and stitches, more likely. I saw the fish first, it was long and striped with spot on it's tail. His delight tickled my heart.
We started down the path, he said, "I hope we see a turtle, mom. I love turtles." I hoped we did as well. I wanted this walk to be special.
We rounded the corner and on the mossy banks sunning itself was a good size boxing turtle. "I can't believe it, a turtle," he said.We stayed put, until we spooked it.
He said, "I want to see a frog." Another corner, another wish fulfilled, I spotted a frog. "I can't believe," he said, "I wanted to see a fish and we did, I wanted to see a turtle and we did, I wanted to see a frog and we did. Do you think we could see a snake?"
Oh yes my friends, a snake scampered across our path. My son stopped dead in his tracks, "Mom how did you do that, you made all of my wishes come true." Thankfully, I was wearing my sunglasses he wouldn't understand my tears.
The path lead us into the woods and we continued our walk in silence, his steps slowed and he looked over his shoulder at me, his smile a perfect balance of devilish and impish, RIIPPPPP, went his fart, guffaw went my laugh.
I stepped in front of him, and let one loose, "I had beans for lunch."
It was his turn to guffaw, "nice one mom," he said, unable to suppress his admiration.
We walked as far as the river, him creating weapons out of the sticks he picked up and me taking pictures of my son in the dappled light. We chatted for a while about nothing important and admired the beauty of our surroundings. We sat on a log our shoulders touching, his hand resting on mine, he wasn't quite holding my hand, but close enough. And that's good enough for me
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