The Wave Goodbye

He sent over a fax. A hope of ingenuity lured the prospect of a resume come to life- the chance at an interview would be nothing like the mannequin of broken dreams that had been whispered in dark phrases throughout his past. His father was no longer the welder of a story of death and failure over this young man’s life. The receipt of the fax came back approved.

Later, a call came and with startled hands, he stumbled to answer, “Hello, hello, hi, yes, this is Johnson”. An interview was scheduled with the senior manager of Intercom Technologies; “Ok, ok, bye, bye thank you. See you Tuesday”.

Johnson had just graduated as a computer engineer from River Penn University in New Rochelle, New York- the E31 bus was his 10 minute commute from home to school and his mother always walked with him to the main street to wave goodbye. He would enthusiastically stutter back, “Goodbye good goodbye”. His mother was a computer programmer- the few whose daily plot of work was spent at home and luckily for her, it’d be the quality time she needed to be with Johnson. Every hand wave goodbye was an empowering gesture for Johnson to stretch into the future instead of bending to the weight of an oppressive past.

Journeying forward, she’d commit the same effort to love Johnson until the day he’d move out to start his own family – it’d been approaching 12 long years since his father left in such ringside horror- his final blow struck Johnson in his teeth permanently leaving him with an unorthodox smile- for the next 6 months his reflection would cause him to think violently in the sweat of fear and sadness; he swallowed his shame while smearing his last name in a pool of blood that he’d occasionally create by harming himself. She knew he’d need everyday from that moment on to relearn how to breathe. More importantly he’d relearn that he is loved. It’d be their victory if he learned to love again.

“Mom mom mom. MOM. I got an interview on Tuesday! I have a good feeling mom- about this one.”

“I’m glad you have an interview hon. I’m so proud of you. You did an amazing job. You are amazing. I cooked some dinner for you when you’re ready”.

Marveling at his appetite, she encouraged him to a second helping. Her cookbooks weren’t just page turners for delicious images- for all the time she spent at home, she learned to be a mother. She was his superhero-  her livelihood was his pleasure to follow her steps. She never had to force her happiness on him-after all, it was his joy that spurred her on.

 

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