Samson came out of his bedroom.
“Sweet Lord!” I gasped.
My five-year old son looked at me sheepishly.
“What happened to your neck?”
“Nothing!” Samson said emphatically.
Nothing? I think not. My sweet Samson had a red line around his neck. A scrape. The kind of mark you get if a demon from the seventh-layer of hell emerges from your closet, wraps its hands around you, and chokes you out.
“Are you okay?” my wife Katie asked.
“Yes!” Samson shouted. “I’m fine.”
Samson gets embarrassed easily. There’s lots of little things that make him blush. He’ll fall out of his bed. Trip on the carpet. Walk into a wall. The kid is a little clumsy. Mostly, you can let his clumsiness slide. His head almost coming loose from his neck? This was not a subject that we could let go.
“Can you tell us what happened, bud?” I asked with sincere tenderness.
He came out with it. Samson was on his bed. He opened his blinds. The cord didn’t wrap around his neck. But it did scrape it when he tripped off his bed. The short out of it? It looked much worse than it was.
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” Katie told me after Samson left the room.
“He’s got a dentist appointment tomorrow.”
“So, what if they call child services?”
“Like because they think we strangled Samson?”
“Like because they think we strangled Samson.”
“But we didn’t strangle Samson.”
“We would never strangle Samson.”
“But they don’t know that.”
Katie took Samson to the dentist. Nobody called child services. So far as I can tell. But Samson still looks kind of ghastly. School starts next week. I hope nobody is terrified of him and the scrape around his neck.
School starts next week. At least, it does at the time I’m writing this blog. I’ll probably put it up after school starts. That’s the way of my routine.
We’re however many months into living with the pandemic. With the anxiety of this past year. These past two years. I’m not saying that I’m a nervous wreck. I’m not. We are, however, about to return to some version of being back in the world next week. A shift to the routine that has developed ever since Rudy Gobert, a staple of my fantasy basketball team, licked a microphone and the country began reacting to our friend the novel coronavirus.
I’m happy to be back in the world. Happy the boys will be back in school. Happy my wife will have something to do again. I’m also a creature of routine. And I know that there will be an adjustment to the adjustments that are coming. That knowledge creates a little energy. And a little energy can create a little anxiety. That’s the way with people. Especially people who live in the times we live in.
I think we will be fine. Know we will be fine. So long as we don’t get attacked by window blinds. Or demons that live in closets. Or child services.
Samson’s neck already looks better. Poor kid. Clumsy as all get out. I wonder who he gets it from? I’m as graceful as a ballerina. And by ballerina, I mean a garbage truck.