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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Unsung Hero (12/07/06)

TITLE: No Cry Baby
By Linda Germain


I have figured out something very useful to my well-being. If I whine in a certain way, the sound of her feet will come in this direction and she will soothe me, feed me, change me, or sing to me. The sunshine in her voice washes over me like a warm bath and I am filled with assurance and hope.

Good morning my darling. Did you sleep well, my little shuggums? It is so gorgeous outside; a stroll to the park would be nice. Both of us could use some fresh air. We might even get ice cream. I’d better stick in a bib and some extra wipes for the mess it makes. It’s worth it though, my precious one, to see your eyes light up. When we get back, the rest of the family will be here for a little celebration of the day you were born. We won’t tell them you’ve already had Vanilla banana swirl. That’ll be our little secret.

She is so beautiful to me. My eyes follow her every move as she cleans me up and quickly dresses me in my daytime clothes. After that mush-like warm stuff she sticks in my mouth and calls breakfast, she’ll change me once more, then she’ll put me in that rolly thing and off we’ll go.

She always talks as if I’ll answer. “Oh look dear,” she’ll say, “There’s a puppy dog and he likes you.” or “See that airplane up in the sky? Remember the one we read about last night?”

Up-si-daisy. Hey, I believe you’ve gained a few pounds. Won’t Dr. Tullina be surprised? Stop wiggling until I get this belt in place. We don’t want you falling out. *Giggle… Now wouldn’t that be a sight? I guess my little cutie-patootie would just go rolling right down the sidewalk without me.

I wish I could tell her of the great comfort she is to my helpless self. She seems so delighted when I smile. I guess that means she understands how lost I would be if I were left in my bed alone, peeking through the bars and staring at the ceiling and waiting for some other love or assistance that would probably never come. I hope God sees all she does, day in and day out, never complaining, always humming and laughing and teaching me. I look up to her for my very life. She hugs me so often; someday I want to hug her back.

Hi everyone. Yes, we’ve been for a lovely outing. Just let me get this bundle of joy changed and in his chair, and then we’ll sing.

There is an offer of help, but my precious mother says, “No thanks. We’ll be right back. Go ahead and light the candles. The fancy plates are in the china closet.”

She washes my face and brushes the tiny bit of hair I have. “Oh my,” she coos, “don’t you look spiffy on your special day?”

She rolls me into the dining room and hoists me into my very own chair. The tray makes a clicking sound as it snaps into place. She says that means I won’t tumble out onto the linoleum. Once I’m propped on either side, she holds the cake where I can see it. The flickering flame fascinates me and I hate to see it go away. Like a good parent, she pretends to help me blow in the direction of the fire. Out it goes, but I suspect all the air is coming from her own lungs. What a woman.

Okay, smile everybody. I want lots of pictures for the scrapbook.

I know for sure I am smiling on the inside.

Say goodbye to Gram and Gramps and Cousin Jodene. Tell them thank you for the wonderful presents.

She holds my hand and waves it, and even speaks for me. She seems to know what is in my heart. After I am changed once again, and snug under my very own blanket, she sings my favorite lullaby. I feel total contentment.

Sleep well my own beautiful child. Close your tired blue eyes and try to get some rest. You’ve had a big day.

I do as she says. Once more I am soothed and secure. The last thing I hear before I drift off is her whisper in my ear, “Happy 40th birthday, sweet angel.”

In tribute to all long-term caregivers

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This article has been read 922 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Schultz 12/14/06
Wow! This is absolutely wonderful! I suspected how it was going to end, but you kept me guessing until the end. I love how you got inside the head and provided a "voice" for someone who didn't have one. Great writing.
william price12/14/06
Another very moving tribute. Extremely well written. God bless.
Jacqueline Zerres12/14/06
I loved the story. Wonderful writing!
Verna Cole Mitchell 12/15/06
This is a well written tribute. The love of the caregiver is so beautiful.
Jen Davis12/15/06
This was so beautiful. I loved every word.
Beth Muehlhausen12/17/06
Wow - nicely done! Just a touch of wondering along the way but not enough to spoil the "surprise" ending! A touching tribute for sure. :-)
Edy T Johnson 12/21/06
What a sweet, sweet tribute to the world's caregivers. I love the voices you've given to both the mother and the son. It is so touching to think of the difference one person can make in the life of another. Thank you, dear friend. I love your writing.