Sunday, February 13, 2005

Pecaw's Gift / Chapter 12 - Time Out

The drive home was just what the doctor ordered as the warm spring air rushed
through her hair. With the windows down on the little green sports car, the sensation of
speed was even more intense. It was the first time in quite a while that she felt good about the world. She had talked with her husband, or at least made contact. The children would be so excited to hear the good news, yet at the same time Bev wanted to cruise down a stretch of road all by herself, run the carburetors to the limit and release all the stress that had built up inside. The exhaust system had been refitted with glass pack resonators. They were not quite legal; but, they sounded like something right out of the European race car movie. The rapid acceleration in first gear coupled with a well timed shift into second sounded like a swarm of angry bumble bees.

Bev throttled out from under the freeway with the echo of power bouncing off the embankment behind her. The dimly lighted instrument panel smiled back at her as she let the ribbons of concrete and asphalt massage her fragile emotions. She and Sinclair had both enjoyed the beauty of the split screen imaging used in the movie “Grand Prix”. Each time the motors would roar, the screen would split, then split again until there was a mosaic of
tachometers red lining all at the same time, splashed across the movie screen.

“Mama’s home!”, Bonnie called out as she heard the retort from the tail pipes. Bev had let the car bound into the last turn as she headed into the subdivision; the tires more than willing to respond in cat like reflex. Turning off the motor and releasing the safety harness, Bev sat for a moment and reviewed the highlights of the day in her mind. It had been a blast. Her visit with Sinclair had supplied the spark; the ride home was only the venting of unused adrenaline.

“How’s Daddy?”, William blurted out as he was wiping some chocolate onto his blue jeans and licking his fingers. Bev began to scold him; but, a quick look of his
over all appearance, . . . well it somehow matched and she only winced a little.

“I have some good news. Your father is doing much better and he told me to give you all a big hug for him.” A lump formed in her throat as the words penetrated her own ears. She gathered her arms around William and Bonnie, “Where’s Jenny? I want you
all to hear about what happened today.”

“She’s in here with me. Just a moment while I turn off the stove top.” It was Becky from down the street. She had been taking care of the daily chores for Bev. Becky was more like a sister than a neighbor. When her kids got sick Bev would drive them to the doctor; Becky didn’t have a car. The two shared all the mysteries of motherhood; its blessings and terrors as if it were some sort of unspoken partnership. What ever was needed, that was what the other supplied. There was never a need to ask, it just happened.

“Bek’; are you still here? Its almost Ten now; here, let me drive you home.” Bev
pushed the passenger door and motioned for her to get in.

“No, Steven said that he would come get me on his way home from the office. You need to be with your kids for a while. I have some stew left over from dinner with the kids. Let’s go inside and you can talk while you eat. Becky didn’t wait for a yes or no; just took charge and started walking for the house.

“Daddy talked? When is he coming home? Did you tell him about the hole in the
carpet?” A feeling of excitement had each of the children’s faces beaming. It was a welcome change from the doldrums that had seized the house and everyone in it.

Bev fielded each question, “Yes, he found a way to reach out of his sleep. He wants to come home and tell you how much he loves each one of you. If the doctor says its okay, then next week he can have a change of rooms and that we’ll be able to visit him as a family.” The children were able to sense that something remarkable, something wonderful was happening as Bev struggled to express the joy that was inside her.

“Does he still have to breath from that machine?” Jenny made a face implying her empathy.

“Yes; but, tomorrow they are going to remove it. They think that the worst is over and that he should make great improvement with each day.”

“Mama, . . . if Daddy is doing so much better, . . . then how come you’re crying so much?”, Jenny studied the tears that ran down her mother’s face. “Is it like when you cry at church?”

“Yes, Dear. Its like that.”