Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Write for the HUMOR Genre (10/09/14)
- TITLE: My Mission
By Kellie Henningsen
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“You won’t have to do a thing,” he said.
Fast forward three weeks. My nine year old son looked at me with brimming eyes.
“Where’d he go?” he asked. “Where Mommy?”
I didn’t know where. Frankly, I didn’t care from a personal standpoint but the blubbery mess of the little boy in front of me pulled at my heart strings. However, one look around the chaotic bedroom snapped me back to reality.
“I’m guessing he thought this place was too much of a dump to live in and jumped ship…or bowl to be exact,” I rationalized. “But where did Bobby bounce off to?” I wondered as I looked around the piles of Legos, army men, water bottles, and scraps of paper that littered the desk and floor.
That’s when he looked at me, looked at the empty fish bowl, quickly realized he was about to be in big trouble on account of his room, and decided to make the best of a bad situation.
“I’m sorry, Mommy,” he sniffed. “I should have taken better care of him.”
My mind diverted from the human garbage dump I was standing in, I knelt beside my son and received the sweetest hug from his little arms. Was I being played for a fool? No, but I’m a succor for a good hug. The room cleaning speech could wait till later. Meanwhile, the case of the missing aquatic was slightly disturbing.
Fast forward three months. “Have a good day at school, honey!” I wave good-bye at the front steps then turn with a slightly maniacal grin on my face. I’ve put it off too long but today, his room is all mine. This was a task no mom wants to do but every mom faces. The semi-annual gutting out of their child’s bedroom. I braced myself and headed to war.
Just inside the door, I was met with random socks, a t-shirt flung on the floor I knew wasn’t dirty, and all manner of magnets, knex pieces, cars, library books, and let’s not even get started on the stuffed animals. Surely, those things reproduce while we sleep.
I took a deep breath to calm my nerves and started in the most dreaded place. A place where things get “hidden” during room cleanings…under the bed. I pulled out bins of Matchbox cars, storage containers of Thomas trains, odd looking creations made with what appeared to be two rolls of scotch tape and random recycling pieces, bits of balloons, and candy leftover from last Halloween amongst other things. Disgusted, I stayed on task and pushed forward.
At this point, the big stuff was removed and all that remained was for me to physically dive under the bed and reconnaissance scattered debris. I prostrated myself on the floor and army crawled my way under. Reminding myself continuously that my son is a gift from God, I used my arms as a human broom and corralled the remaining junk into one pile on the rug in front of me. Then, with precision, I inched my way out. And that’s when I saw it. But in the interest of not vomiting and making my job harder, I decided on denial for a few moments longer.
Once in the light, I was able to decipher the contents with clarity. And there…lying amongst the mess…was Bobby. Poor Bobby. We had forgotten all about him but here he was. A true testament to the cleaning abilities of a nine year old boy.
It was at this point, the semi-annual re-evaluation of my life kicked in. However, I’m happy to report that in the end, my head cleared and I saw my life for what it is…blessed. Sure the little guy makes a mess. Sure he managed to lose a fish in his room. Sure it had literally been decaying under his bed for months. But the little buggar makes me smile. He is truly a blessing from the Lord and I am honored to be his mom.
With these new thoughts securely in place, I carefully wrapped Bobby in a tissue, popped a stale Tootsie Roll in my mouth, and returned to my monumental mission.
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