She chose a photo designed to summon creative juices. Immensely intrigued, I committed time and Souldipper space to get to know this child who reached out of a picture and touched my soul.
We were invited to write a descriptive piece using as many senses as possible.
Nine year old Devon moved officiously from behind the wheelchair. “What are you spraying?”
The caregiver paused with a tired sigh dreading an encounter with a precocious child. “I’m refreshing your grandfather’s room.” Pssst! The putridly sweet-scented substance that promised spring violets stung Devon’s eyes.
“Please stop. He hates that stuff. It makes him sick.” Devon saw she was being ignored. She had to stop this woman. For courage, she reached over and grabbed her grandfather’s dry, tissue-paper hand. The overpowering chemical spread a tickling sting in Devon’s nasal passages. At first she considered stopping it, then joyfully released a loud, snorting sneeze, “Ah choo!”
The spraying stopped.
The caregiver picked up her basket to leave, then said, “What’s he doing with those scissors? Where did he get them?”
“I brought them. He’s gonna cut his beard as soon as he finishes with my IPod. He’s listening to me sing in our school play. The Wizard of Oz. Then we’re going for turkey dinner at my Aunt Molly’s house.”
“He’s not supposed to have sharp scissors.”
“Maybe my grandpa can’t walk, but he can cut his beard.” Devon’s tone rose with defensiveness.
The caregiver stood with her hands on her hips, “I’ll have to take them from him.”
Devon knew the IPod would soon be finished. She had to take care of this immediately, “My grandpa knows how to do everything. He carried a friend over a mine field when he was soldier. That friend visits grandpa all the time. He saved my mom and my aunt once from a fire. He saved tons of animals. He used guns, knives, razor blades, saws, axes… You should listen to my grandpa’s stories sometime. Scissors don’t scare him.”
“I’m sure you know why rules exist. I bet your mother has rules about scissors.”
“Well when my grandpa runs with these scissors, you can tell him the rules.” Devon’s eyes darkened with defiance as she flashed a look at her grandfather to make certain the Wizard was still playing. “Me and grandpa never talk about rules. He told me that the only people who need rules are the ones who don’t know how angels think.”
Grandfather suddenly shouted above the applause that only he could hear, “My goodness, sweetheart, that was some performance!”