Friday, September 25, 2015

Something Missing on Dad's Birthday

Snicker. The blog is named after him.

        by Valerie L. Egar

    The Randall children surprised Dad with breakfast in bed for his birthday. Christie, who was twelve and allowed to cook, made pancakes. Ten-year-old David microwaved bacon. Nicholas was seven and wasn't sure what to do.

     "You can pour Dad a glass of orange juice and carry it to him," said Christie.

     Dad ate every drop of his breakfast. He said the pancakes were delicious and the bacon crisp, exactly the way he liked it. He drank the orange juice and said it was extra sweet.

     Nicholas knew Dad enjoyed his breakfast, but all he got to do was pour juice out of a carton. He wanted to do something special for Dad and he didn't think pouring juice was enough. 

     When Dad came downstairs, he saw presents. He opened a pretty red, white and blue tin to find chocolate chip cookies Christie made. "Mmmm, delicious!" he said as he tasted one.

     David had placed something in a brown paper bag and taped the bag shut. Dad pulled at the tape and took out a birdhouse David had painted. "This is great!" Dad said. "I heard some wrens the other day and I think they will like this house very much."

     Nicholas had wrapped his present in the Sunday comics and it looked colorful and bright. Dad opened the package and found a picture Nicholas drew of a man in a blue truck. Nicholas' Mom helped him put it in a frame he'd found in the attic.

     "That's you, Dad," said Nicholas.

     Dad smiled. "It  looks just like me." He put it on his desk. Nicholas knew Dad liked the picture, but he still felt as though something was missing. Somehow, the picture wasn't enough.

     That afternoon, the family went to a baseball game. Dad loved watching his favorite team, but so far, the season hadn't been a good one. "We've got to cheer them on said Dad. Every time the team made a good play, Dad, Christie, David and Nicholas yelled as loud as they could. 

     When the game was over, Dad was all smiles. "I've never heard anyone cheer as loud as you kids. You helped them win."

     Nicholas had yelled so loud, so often, he didn't have much left to his voice. He knew the win made Dad happy, but even that didn't feel like enough. Something was still missing.

     When they arrived home, Mom made Dad's favorite dinner. Mom asked Nicholas not to say, "Eww, gross" when she brought it to the table. Nicholas thought not making any comments might be a kind of present too, so when Mom surprised Dad with the biggest lobster ever, Nicholas quietly ate his hamburger. Staying quiet, hard as it was, didn't seem like enough.

     When Nicholas went to bed, Dad came to tuck him in. "Thank you for making my birthday special, Nicholas."

     Nicholas hugged Dad. "I love you very much, Daddy."

     Dad's eyes brightened and Nicholas knew he'd finally found the something that had been missing.

Published in The Sunday Journal Tribune June 28, 2015. Copyright 2015 by Valerie L. Egar. May not be copied or distributed without permission from the author.


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