I just returned home yesterday from a week at our church youth camp down in Davis, Oklahoma. I’m one of the cooks. The week is full of laughter, fellowship with my cooking buddies, hugs from the youth, sore feet, and many special memories that are made. This is our fourth year of camp, and each year I’m so grateful to Gary for making it possible for me to go. Sometimes he has taken vacation the week I am gone, or Andrea has been here to help with things. This year Gary did not take vacation and Andrea is no longer living here. Aaron was able to handle his mornings just fine, though. He knows the routine for the couple hours that he was here before his day group staff, Cody, picked him up.
There was one morning that wasn’t too smooth, though. On Wednesday, Aaron was apparently throwing his back scratcher down the stairs like a Frisbee, he said. We’re not exactly certain how it all happened, but the small window in the door broke. Aaron ended up calling Gary, who came home from work to help clean up the mess. Thankfully things worked out fine and hopefully Aaron learned a lesson. Probably not, but we can still hope.
Usually when I’m gone, Aaron will call my cell phone repeatedly…………but this time, I didn’t hear from Aaron all week. Until Friday afternoon. Aaron was still at his day group and Krysten let him borrow her cell phone………..I hope she let him borrow it. He’s been known to help himself to phones. Anyway, my phone rang and I knew when I saw the name on the phone that it was probably Aaron. I answered anyway. And was I surprised!
“Mom! I miss you!!”
Wow! Was this Aaron? Or just someone who sounded like Aaron? Usually when I answer the phone, even when I’ve been gone, he launches right into some grand story without saying anything personal at all.
So I responded, “Aw, Aaron, I’ve missed you too!”
He chuckled, unsure of how to accept those words.
“So Mom, when are you coming home?”
“I’m coming home tomorrow, Aaron!” And he quickly asked, “What time?” It’s very important for Aaron to have details. Tomorrow has many hours and he feels a need to know the time. I told him that I wasn’t exactly sure, but that didn’t work.
“But what time?” he asked again. So I told him an approximate time. He was content with that. Then I fully expected a food question, but he went on to tell me about his day at the movies………….and eventually, he got the dreaded Wednesday morning incident off his chest.
“Mom, I was throwing my back scratcher down the stairs like a Frisbee.”
I told him that I knew about that. We talked about not throwing things, etc. And he asked, “But don’t you throw a Frisbee?”
Yes, Aaron…….but the back scratcher is not a Frisbee……….and even if it was, we don’t throw Frisbees in the house.
“Well, I threw it like a Frisbee and it broke the medium window in the door.”
Dad told me about the medium window, Aaron. As we talked he was feeling relieved, I’m sure, to have this conversation out in the open before I came home. We finished talking as I told him that I had to go. And the next day, just as soon as I walked into the house, I heard him lumbering up the stairs. He had video game codes on his mind and didn’t give me a hug right away, but finally at Gary’s reminder, Aaron gave me a sideways Aaron hug.
And soon after that, he asked the question he had been saving all along.
“Mom! What’s for supper?”
Now that’s my Aaron! I missed you, Aaron!