So sleepy. Oh so sleepy. The warmth of the sun is lulling me into a front seat stupor. I slow blink, reveling in the extra long red light.
Why do they drink so much milk? I don’t even see them do it. It’s like they’re milk vampires, draining our supply when I’m not looking. I can never buy enough milk.
I want to be home. I want to be in my house, not searching for a parking space at our crowded Publix, not loading them out of the car and into the store where I will say “no” and “no way” and “forget it” and “come on” and “I said no” 347 times.
‘I’ve been up since 2 am. I work so hard. I’m so sleepy. I want to be on spring break at the beach like other people. I’m so sleepy.’ My self pitying refrain plays in my head as I park.
“Can we get a balloon?” my son asks from the back seat.
“No. We’re getting milk and leaving. No.”
“Why can’t we get a balloon?” his little sister asks. They team up when it’s mutually beneficial.
“You always let yours go as soon as we get home,” I say to my son. “It’s a waste. It’s litter.”
Silence from the back seat.
“Yeah, Jude, why do you do that?” his sister is now on my team.
“I do it because I think balloons go to heaven,” he tells her. “I think God catches them and gives them to the people waiting in heaven for their families. I think he takes the other ones and puts them in the house where Mom and Dad will live, so they will have the balloons with them until you and I can be with them in heaven.”
I don’t say anything, but two minutes later, poor Moses (that was the name on his tag) the Publix employee never saw what hit him. I did not physically clobber him but I came close.
With balloons and milk — and cake in hand (the no’s floated away with the balloon revelation), we went home.
He walked into the backyard and let it go, watching until it was out of sight.
As he passed me on his way in the house he said, “Pink will look nice in your house.”
I think so, too.