February 28, 2013

The Trip to See Pap. ~ Alix Armstrong

It’s so cold tonight I make sure you are dressed warmly and your diaper is dry.

I zip up your coat despite your fussing. You’re impatient to get out the door to the car so I lift your tiny body from the doorway to the driveway as you continue to protest. Buckled safely into the car, I can amuse you with my cell phone’s GPS and all the red lights of the dash.

Although I don’t eat fast food and it is not really good for you, I decide to use the drive-through of Wendy’s for one of your favorites. Now you are even more impatient for arriving to see Pap and having the little cheeseburger and fries. Once there, I buckle you in so that you don’t suddenly lurch forward out as I push you along.

The cold air makes me want to run for the sliding doors of the rehab.

Finally I can relax as we visit with Pap and you happily munch your food. I unbuckle you to take off your coat so you take advantage of the moment to leave your seat to explore the drawers of Pap’s bedside table. You teeter on your unsteady feet and get really mad when I ask you to sit down before you go crashing into some medical device or the floor.

It’s starting to get late, past your eight pm bedtime, so we get ready to say goodbye and head home. As I tuck you safely in and zipper your coat, you look up at me and say, “You should have a baby.”

I sigh as I say, “No Mom, I don’t need to have a baby because I have you.”

You giggle as we go back out into the freezing cold night…


Alix Armstrong lives along the Youghiogheny River in southwest Pennsylvania. As a public health professional, she works in the field of behavioral health, encouraging people to make healthy lifestyle changes. Since she turned 50, she volunteer teaches a mat Pilates class and runs half marathons.




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Ed. Caroline Scherer & Brianna Bemel

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