Ken, Jerry, and Matthew came to pick us up from the airport. I was glad I would get to see them one last time before our flight at four.
“How was the trip? How was Jenny? How was Coach? Was the house like you remembered? Did you bring us back anything?” Ken talked a mile a mintue once again.
“Dude. Shut it. I’m sure they don’t remember your first question,” Jerry jabbed at Ken, who this time was in the back seat with us. Matthew was the driver; he needed to practice for his licensed test next weekend.
“Right. Sorry. Just happy you are back,” Ken settled down.
“What was the first question?” Jeremy asked.
Ken too had to think first before answering, “Oh. Right. How was the trip?”
“Do you just want the highlights? Or extensive details?” ‘I would rather the simple answer.’ I was still exhausted.
“Simple,” Matthew called back, “I don’t think I can pay attention to driving and listen intently.”
“Okay,” Jeremy cleared his throat, “Jenny chewed me out. Coach nearly killed George during a workout. Jenny wouldn’t listen to George. And no one was forgiven or given closure.” Jeremy looked at me if I had more input.
“And Coach is now coaching a city team up there,” I added to add some good news.
We were met with expressionless faces.
‘As I expected.’
“Bummer. I was hoping it would be a good trip, but I can kind of understand the outcome. It’s going to take time for her to get used to the idea of this one,” Jerry thumbed at Jeremy.
“Very true, and maybe you three too,” Jeremy draped his arm over Jerry’s shoulder.
“Why us?” Ken and Matthew asked simitaniously.
“Well, when I told her you all accepted me into your gang she was surprised first, and then probably disappointed in you all. That you could also befriend her great enemy,” Jeremy threw his hands up in the air.
“Wow. Thanks,” Jerry shoved Jeremy’s hand off of him, “I was hoping to visit them at some point. But I guess that is not an option.”
“Sorry. I thought it would help her see that I had changed enough that you upstanding people could accept me. But yes, it backfired,” Jeremy slump in his seat.
“Don’t worry about it dude,” Matthew said as he drove, “she would have found out about it sooner or later. Probably better she heard it from you then having to say she is disappointed in us to our faces.”
Jerry and Ken both nodded. “Ture,” they both agreed.
“Well on a better note,” I wanted to change the topic; the day needs to be more uplifting before we leave, “are you all staying the afternoon?”
“Right. Yeah. Your mom invited us over for an early goodbye lunch. She knew you would have been too busy to plan anything on your short trip,” Jerry said as we were almost to our exit.
‘That’s just like Mom.’
Lunch was delicious as always. Mom has a true gift at making one’s stomach happy. But as the lunch went on, I noticed that Mom was chippier than normal. She had a spring in her step as she walked through the dining room and into the kitchen. She seemed like she was in the clouds. Dad was happier too. ‘I wonder what happened
while we were gone?’
“I have an announcement; well maybe we have an announcment,” Mom said as Dad had joined her at the head of the table.
Mom looked at Dad; they seemed to exchange words without talking. “Okay,” Dad was the first to talk, “I guess I will be announcing the good news.” Dad pulled Mom to his side and rested his hand on her waist. Dad paused for a dramatic effect, “We are expecting.”
It took me a second to realize what that meant, “You are pregnant!?” I blurted out with excitment.
Mom giggled and nodded happily.
The guys took longer, but after I answered they finally understood. “Congratulations,” the guys said in unison. Jerry and Ken both ran over to give Mom a hug and Dad fists bumps. Matthew and Jeremy followed their pursuit; even though Jeremy was not planning on hugging my mom. Still mom was not about to pass up on a well deserved hug.
“I’m going to have a sibling?” I hadn’t moved. I was happy but also stunned.
“Oh, George. I hope you are happy. I was worried you would think you are being…” Mom started to nervously fidget.
I was not about to let Mom feel bad for this happy news. I ran to her side and gave her the hug she deserved. I also whispered into her ear, “Thank you Mom; for giving me something I’ve always wanted,” I could feel tears coming so I just rested my head on her shoulder.
Mom’s body sighed with relief and hugged me a little tighter.
“Do I get a hug too?” Dad said as he placed hands on both our shoulders, “I did kind of help.”
“Hon,” Mom let go of me and jabbed at Dad.
Mom’s face was starting to redden, so she ran into the kitchen. I laughed. ‘Mom is so cute.’ I had gathered myself and I turned to give Dad his hug as well. I was ecstatic to finally have a sibling, but I’m sure Dad is happy to have another one. We just stood there in our embrace.
“Okay son, I’m hungry,” Dad slowly let go and pulled away.
The tears were back. They were happy tears of course, but here it comes…
“Oh…the eldest baby is crying,” Jeremy poked fun at my emotions.
“So what. I’m happy I will have a sibling. It’s what I’ve always wanted,” I wiped my tears away and stood a little taller. “And this time the child will have uncontrollable nice, sweet genes,” I yelled loud enough and in the direction of the kitchen.
“Thanks George,” a voice echoed from the kitchen. “Now for another surprise,” Mom exited the kitchen holding a platter with several colored cupckes.
“Wow!” We all said at once.
“I made them as cupcakes, because then you could decide how much sweets you want personally. I know you, George, haven’t been eating much,” Mom set the platter down in
front of us.
Even though we were all supposed to be watching our weight, maybe not Ken, we devoured all the cupcakes. I ate two; Mom was right, my sweets intake had lessened. So while everyone else was in a sugar coma, I decided to help Mom clean up. I took up my spot as the dishwasher; while Mom carried all the dishes into the kitchen. Then she took her spot as the dryer. I broke the silence, “Mom.”
“Yes, George,” Mom answered as she continued to dry.
“Can you call me Son, or something other than George. Even though we are not related by blood,” I stopped washing the dish and turned to face her, “You are the best Mom someone could ask for. I just want to feel closer to you.”
Silence once again grew in the room.
Mom had not looked at me, but as she slowly turned and I saw the tears spilling down her face, “I’ve been waiting for this day!” Mom whispered out as tears continued.
Soapy hands and all, I pulled her into a hug. Her tears subsided and we pulled apart. I wiped the soap off my hands before clearing her face of the tears.
“You don’t have to decide on the name now, you can think about it; but it would really mean a lot to me to fully be your kid too,” I turned my attention back to the dishes to hold my own emotions at bay.
“Sure, Son,” Mom gasped and threw the drying towel over her mouth.
I laughed at her reaction.
She laughed as well, “Well I guess, Son, it is. Your dad says it all the time, so I guess in my head that has always been your name. Son. I like it! Your sibling will have a great older brother to look up to; I think I’m most excited about that,” Mom warmly smiled as she grabbed the next dish from the rack.
We just stood there together as Mom and Son washing the dishes. But unknown to us, Dad was standing in the entrance of the kitchen, having watched our exchange. He too had tears rolling down his cheeks.