Where do I begin to describe Nancy?
My first introduction to her was through her writing for The Red Dress Club prompts. I have always been so excited to see her posts linked up. She is frugal with her words, yet she never comes up short; her posts are always…just perfect.
What I love most about Nancy’s writing is that it isn’t overworked or overly sentimental, yet it often moves me to tears and leaves me thinking long after I’ve read it.
Thank you, Nancy, for sharing this sweet story with us. I’m not sure I could have been so generous had this lovely story been mine.
Honey on a Warm Biscuit–by Nancy
We were at a cookout with four other families, meaning that between us all, there were a dozen children playing in the backyard. My youngest son, true to form, had found a pile of dirt, and had settled into subterranean bliss. Some children had found the Princess costumes. Others kicked a soccer ball.
And then there was my five-year old son–sitting on the deck, trying to get out of a marriage proposal.
“Owen,” said his friend, “We need to get married someday.”
He stared straight ahead, his lips creased into a frown.
She adjusted her flower headband, and plowed on, “You don’t understand. I have to marry somebody, and I don’t want to marry anybody else.”
My son groaned, and rubbed his hand across his face. “I don’t want to get married.”
She sighed. Men. “I can’t have a baby unless I’m married, and I only want to marry you. So we’re going to get married, right?”
He opened his mouth, and I held my breath. There were so many things he could say. Cruel things. Dismissive things. He patted her hand and said, “I’ll have to think about it.”
“Okay. But I’ve already decided.” She skipped away, perhaps to read her tattered copy of Preschool Bride.
I sat next to him, attempting to stifle my grin. “What’s going on, Buddy?”
He kicked his legs under the chair. “Mommy, I don’t want to get married”
I bit my tongue. “Nobody said you had to.”
His shoulders relaxed, a visible release. He swallowed once, looked up, and whispered, “I just want to marry you.”
His words flowed through me like honey on a warm biscuit.
“I don’t think that’s legal,” I replied, mussing his hair. “Plus, I already married your Daddy.”
He rubbed his face again, and let out a deep exhalation. “I don’t understand all this crazy stuff.”
“You don’t have to.” I opened my mouth to say more, but then we heard the screaming.
His little friend was hit in the eye with a ball. She wailed in her father’s arms. Her blond head heaved with each wave of shock and pain.
Owen watched, his eyes wide, and his mouth open. “She’ll be okay, honey,” I said. “It just surprised her.”
He nodded, and marched from the deck to the grass.
Without hesitation, he tapped her on the shoulder. She turned, sniffing and red-faced. Stepping forward, he enveloped her in a hug.
They held each other briefly, and I heard him whisper, “It’ll be okay.” She wiped her eyes, and stepped back from the embrace.
I watched from above, my eyes moist, my heart full. Although he did not understand marriage, he did understand how to be tender and kind.
I wear this golden moment, dear and true, forever.
I am so honored to share this moment. Thank you, Nichole, for the opportunity.
You can also find her on Twitter, where she is funnier than she realizes.