The Third in the Seven Days of Timmy’s Snow White
The next morning, Timmy was up before anyone else.He had on his favorite orangey-brown shirt - he called it an army shirt - and he’d dug out the pair of blue sunglasses his Grammy had given him last summer when they were at the beach. He loved them because they made the sky really really blue, and the ocean more blue and the sand all blue. It was like magic to him. His Mom wouldn’t let him wear them all day long. Only at the beach.But now, since Timmy’s usual talkative and sweet self was back, nobody was going to fuss over a pair of blue sunglasses that were a little small for him. So much so that he finally had to ask him Mom to tie them on so they’d stay. And she’d done it, gratefully.
After that, she’d had been a great day with him. He was full of all the things he knew and had learned recently and things that he was figuring out and how he was working at it. Timmy wanted to go to the Library, where he’d never gone for himself, but only as a tag-along with the Mom or Dad and his brother. He spend a lot of time looking at the displays in the Children’s Section and asking the Children’s Librarian about what each one was, and what it told. When the librarian left, his Mom said that those books were much too old for him to be thinking of reading. But, he said that his Dad would read to him if he found a book that could teach him something interesting. Like about how Lily got sick and had to die. But his Mom suddenly looked teary. She had hugged him and then led him to the picture books and said she wanted to talk with the librarian about how old Timmy would have to be before he could get a library card.
Really, she left him there because she was shocked. He was talking about when their very old English Bulldog, Lily, had to be put down because her hips kept slipping and she kept falling and the veterinarian told them there was nothing could be done to fix the condition and that she was in pain and was suffering. He said he’d come to their home to explain it to the boys, and he did. Came to their home, introduced himself to the boys as Lily’s doctor, said to call him Doc, and explained how Lily was in trouble with her bones which was why she cried and why she fell down all the time. He said it couldn’t be fixed, even medicine didn’t help and he thought it would be kinder to put her to sleep, so she wouldn’t be in pain any more. Timmy hadn’t understood, really. Doc had said sleep, but then he’d said forever. His Mom said it meant Lily went to sleep and then her heart stopped and she died. Timmy was shocked, but he told his Mom that if Lily had hurt the way his ear aches hurt him he guessed he was glad for her to be asleep even if it had to be forever. Lily was buried at the back of the garden, now covered in a bed of day lilies. Timmy didn’t remember her much. Only her tongue and the thump of her tail, which was hard and could hurt, and her awful smelling farts.
Meanwhile, Timmy was glad to be sitting with picture books. He had only said that thing about Lily, whom he hardly remembered, because of that man, Doc, who’d come to their house. He thought it had been a smart thing to say, but now he wondered. It was hard, trying to be all smart and grown up-like. And the blue sunglasses weren’t much fun when he was inside. Kind of hurt his eyes, really.And they were too small, and he’d love to rip them off. Only he can’t.
On the way to pick up his brother, he was quiet and nice and happy-seeming, so his Mom wondered how much he’d really understood about Lily and what was going on in that small head, anyway?He seemed fine. Back to talking about everything he’d been told by the librarian and the books he’d looked at. Even his brother seemed glad to have the old Timmy back when they picked him up from school, and never said a word about the blue sunglasses or about how much of a chatterbox Timmy was being. His Mom figured he was as relieved as she was, which was sweet of him. She beamed at him, and then she beamed at Timmy. Altogether, it was mostly a rollicking good day.
When Timmy’s Dad got home from work and found nothing had changed since the sunny start to the day and that his old buddy and wonderfully eccentric youngest son, even when wearing too small blue sunglasses, was back in the fold, full of fun and full of talk, he was relieved too. He even read longer than usual with Timmy and answered all of Timmy’s serious questions about chipmunks and about skunks, looking things up on line on the lap top, showing Timmy what he’d found each time. It was a wonderful evening. Timmy’s brother even stopped by, just to say “g’night.” An almost never occurrence. And so everyone went to sleep that night, happy, relieved, and relaxed.
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