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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Grrr! (01/28/10)

TITLE: Please Lord, Just One Hour
By Micheline Murray


“I am completely exhausted. I am going upstairs to take a nap for one hour. I do not want to hear any noise from any of you, especially fighting. Do you understand?” Michele let her gaze fall on each of her children long enough for them to nod a solemn, wide-eyed, “Yes.” Mommy never took naps--she MUST be really tired!

“Good. We’re all thankful that Mommy doesn’t have to work a double-shift very often, but this time I had no choice. You can watch “Night at the Museum-Battle of the Smithsonian” and have popcorn. Kristen, you’re in charge but no bossing. James, Cassandra, you listen to her. Ok, I’m going to close my door now. I will come out in exactly one hour. Unless someone is bleeding, or the house is on fire, no one better knock on this door.”

With that, she closed the door and collapsed into the softness of her favorite comforter, a warm breeze blowing the curtains gently in the afternoon quiet. As her head became one with the pillow, she sighed deeply and peered at the clock, “Three o'clock. Please, Lord, just one hour--that’s all I ask.”

The door creaked and Michele’s eyes popped open. Grrr. In sauntered their aging shepherd Buddy. Still nimble enough to jump onto the bed, he had plans for a nap of his own. “Oh, how did I not close it tightly? That’s ok-3:03-I still have 57 minutes.” She got up to secure the door against any further intrusions on this precious time. Curled up once again, she quickly fell into what felt like a coma.

“Mom! Mom! Are you awake?” Michele blinked, unable to lift her head from the pillow. She focused enough to see that it was now 3:17, and let her eyes fall shut again.
“Mom--Lauren called and wants me to go to the mall with them but they’re leaving at 3:30 so I couldn’t wait until you woke up to ask you. I mean, I know it’s not an emergency or anything, but…Mom?”

Grrr. Without speaking, Michele raised her arm enough to point her thirteen year old daughter back through the door, thankful for the “click” as it closed. “I can’t Lauren, no, she didn’t exactly SAY “No,” but…” Kristen’s voice faded as she clumped back down the stairs.
The warm turquoise water splashed onto her legs as she basked in the tropical sun, her beach chair resting at the water’s edge. “Your raspberry iced-tea, Miss-” (Did this gorgeous young waiter really just call her, “Miss?”) “with extra lemon and ice, just as you ordered. Is there anything else I can do for you, anything at all?” Michele squinted into the sun’s glare as she turned to reach up for the drink…wait…was it spilling? Something was spilling…

“…then Cassandra spilled her drink Mom-all over the couch. What should I use to get grape soda out? Mom? Can you hear…me….Mom?” Grrr. James backed out of the room as he finished speaking, softly closing the door. “Please, God, let there by a half-hour left--just a half hour--that’s all I ask--3:35--ok--not bad--I’ll take it.”

Michele settled in for one last attempt at sleep, squishing her pillow until it molded against her face just the right way.

Was there another spill? And what was that noise--something bumping at the door? She lifted her now pounding head and felt a string of drool from her mouth to the pillow. “Yuck! Well, at least I must have been sleeping.!” Stretching, Michele spotted a wrinkled envelope just inside her door. She knew right away that Cassandra must have bumped up against the door while slipping this underneath. Opening it, she pulled out a vibrantly colored picture with the words, “MOMMY--you said not to knock but it’s four o’clock--can you get up now please? PS-Kristen helped me spell everything right and it even rhymes too!” The scented colors emanating from the drawing meant only one thing-Cassandra had opened her new school markers. Michele hoped this masterpiece wasn’t created on the couch next to the grape soda.

“Mommy! You’re up!” Cassandra whooped when she heard her mom's footsteps coming down the stairs. “Did you have a good nap?”

“What? How could I? You each woke me up for something different!” Grrr, with a smile. “But, Mommy,” her youngest daughter chirped, “You didn’t say not to wake you up! You only said not to knock on the door!”

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This article has been read 654 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Ruth Brown02/04/10
Ah kids, ya gotta love em! Cute piece.
Dan Blankenship 02/04/10
I loved it. You really painted a good picture of a mom needing a solid rest and the children who love her.

Joan Campbell02/06/10
Lovely! What mother can't relate to this?
Joy Bach 02/06/10
I have so been there. This is absolutely great.
The Masked Truelovers02/09/10
I'm glad the good 'ol days with younger children is over. Nice portrait of family life.
Mona Purvis02/09/10
One of those naps that leave you feeling so much worse. Enjoyed this Grrr story a lot. Very believable, indeed.
Carol Slider 02/09/10
You do have to be specific with young children, don't you?:) Good job--enjoyed this a lot!
Jackie Wilson02/09/10
Boy, can I relate! Super job of presenting this slice of real life!
Loren T. Lowery02/09/10
The way you presented this and the entire storyline had me grinning from ear to ear. Well done, thoroughly enjoyable.
Lyn Churchyard02/09/10
Oh boy, been there, done that and have the grey hairs to prove it! You had the kid's reactions down just beautifully. The dog and the dream sequence added to the whole story nicely. Well done.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/09/10
What a precious ending. Mommy is always on call. Great job.
Connie Dixon02/10/10
This was a fun read and so true to life. Good job!
Maria Kana Santos02/10/10
Ahhh...Mother, the queen of the home...who can't even 'lounge at her own leisure' without having a child (or two) on her lap to read to.

I can relate to what you were saying.
Good job in getting your message and plea across :) Thanks for writing it.
Pamela Kliewer02/10/10
What a cute story. Love the ending! So typical for a kid!
Lollie Hofer02/10/10
Great story, fun to read. You certainly connected with all the mothers (and some of us grandmothers too who have grandchildren living with them) all over the world. Entertaining!
Brenda Shipman 02/11/10
Congratulations on placing 3rd in Advanced AND 6th in Editor's Choice. This was such a great story. Well-deserved!
Sarah Elisabeth 02/11/10
Congrats on your placings!
Carol Slider 02/11/10
Congratulations on your EC for your very true-to-life story! That deserves an extra hour of naptime, right? :)
Carol Penhorwood 02/12/10
Every mother in the world can relate to your story! So well done...and so deserving of your placement!

Have you checked out the Challenge Forums?
Sharlyn Guthrie02/16/10
Sounds like a typical mom nap to me. Great job! Congrats on your EC!