Saturday, July 25, 2009

Red is the color of love, balloons and blood

[below, the story of how that scab appeared on her knee.]

I work full time, so by the time 5 ‘o clock started getting near, I was already in a near panic about lighting.
Desparation and sheer panic. No, insanity and obsession. No, neurosis and psychosis.
I MUST rush to the grocery store and get red balloons. Will I have time to even comb her hair? Crap.
What if she’s not in the mood? The sun is going down, the sun is going down...
I should probably get some groceries, too.
“Yes, I’ll take five balloons.”...
Wow, they are pretty big.
“Um, let’s make it four.”

“Hi sweetie!!! Look, mommy brought a surprise!!”
{great, she’s pleased! she’ll cooperate.}

Hair into sloppy pigtails, new dress, from Marshall’s, (on sale) is on.
Mad dash to the car, with new balloons, new camera, newly dressed toddler, and new obsession in tow.
No wipies. No sippy cup. No bunnies or play toys.
It’ll be fine.

{Don’t force it. Don’t be a mean mommy. Just let her have fun. Oh shit, she lost a balloon.}

Heartbreaking, sobbing, she can’t believe that balloon is way up there, floating off into space.
What am I DOING?? Why am I taking photos of her wailing.
Oh, come on.. it’s just a balloon. She’ll get over it.

Tears gone, now only three balloons. Smile returned. Boogers wiped off. Photoshoot in progress.

“Hey sweetie, you look so beautiful. Do you think you can come running toward mommy ONE more time? I PROMISE we’ll go play in the park as soon as I take a FEW more shots.”

And she did. Came running, hard, without her shoes, as I had instructed. Smiling even.
Stumbled. Fell. Splayed out on that icky, terrible summer-hot asphalt.
This was a bad one.
I put down the new camera.. carefully.

A slow stream of red blood trickled down, starting at her knee, all the way to her ankle.
It was so bright, and warm, and red.
Just like the balloons.

Oh, how awful. What have I done?
No wipies to clean it.
No sippy cup to give her some water.
I had nothing but a dirty beach towel and some warm bottled water in the car.
We cleaned up with those things, and she was very brave.
I fulfilled my promise to let her go play in the park, bloodied, tear stained.

Sun was finally almost completely down as we pulled into the driveway home.
She reached her hand and rested it softly on my forearm as I was unbuckling her.
“I love you,” she said.
“I love you, too,” I said.
And one of a billion tiny little threads in my heart, broke.

[click here to see a shot from the balloon shoot]

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