42: Almost Like Old Times

Three young men showed up at our house last night…And it seems like just yesterday that these three, silly boys were knocking on our door to play with M.  

M spent all but two years at the same grade school, and our school community friends became our weekend companions too. From sleep-overs to sporting events, M’s friends not only fill our family photo albums, but they also fill our hearts. For years, these boys played hard and laughed hard, but I think it was the summer before M’s freshman year that I started to notice a little separation from the pack.  M seemed to be seeking out new friends, which in high school is expected and healthy (most of the time.)  But if I asked M about his old friends, I sensed sadness in his voice. They had drifted apart.

     So, there stood M, J, and J, “Hi, Mrs. S.”
     I quickly wrapped my arms around each of these tall boys, “What brings you by?”
     “We wanted to tell you that we were sorry to hear about Winnie,” M explained.

     I invited these sweet boys in to look at something I had just found on Facebook – then I added quickly, “Don’t worry – it’s not bad.”  (They knew about my Facebook escapades last month.) On the screen, I played a video of M’s soccer team at the military academy in a shootout. We watched as his teammate scored the winning goal; the boys ran onto the field, formed a circle, and jumped up and down cheering.
     Even though his back was to the camera, they easily spotted M.  Big smiles on their faces turned into the sweet old laughter that used to come from our basement – just a little deeper.  It was as if M had just told them something funny, or made a ridiculous face, or impersonated someone.  We played it again, and their reaction was just as great.
     Smiling wide, one of them added that M had sent him a message this week.  It read, “I just scored my first soccer goal since 1st grade.”  More laughter erupted, and they were in their own little world together.

     As we reminisced a little bit more about the many ways that M makes us laugh, it was obvious that I wasn’t the only one in the kitchen who missed him.  That made me smile too…Thank you B, N, and K for raising such nice young men.


One thought on “42: Almost Like Old Times

  1. I found your blog through your 1st post that was highlighted in Dr. Laura's daily email. I wanted to say thank you. Thank you for being such a strong mother and for facing, head on, the soul-sucking monster that is addiction. Perhaps, if my husband's mother or step mother had been as strong and as determined as you to wrestle their son back from the brink, he wouldn't have had to go through the last 13 years of his life in and out of the clutches of chemicals and haze. Perhaps he would have chosen to begin, to really begin taking control of his own destiny as a teenager or as a young man, rather than waiting to make the decision to get clean only after 2 DUI total wrecks including one with our infant son in the car (both, blessedly and thankfully were okay post crash). Perhaps he would have learned, back then, that he was worth it and most of all, that his life has worth. I am so thankful that, my son is safe and my husband is, for today at least, sober. I can only imagine the kind of man he would be today if he would have had a mother willing to fight for him as you are fighting for your son. So, from the point of view of a wife who has married someone who didn't have a lioness for a mother- Thank you for doing all that you are doing to ensure that your son's future family has the man that they deserve in their life. You are right, there is hope and I am inspired by you.


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