“But-but-but...” he protested, and his fat, pink arms flapped in open rebellion. Obviously, he didn’t care about my shopping bags!
“No buts,” I hushed him, raising a warning finger to let him know I wasn’t joking.
“But I don’t wanna walk on my own,” he whined, and I glared at him for the first time in all my life and his. Of course, he wouldn’t want to walk on his own! Why? When he had that fancy ‘walker’ that took away the need to move his legs – me!
“You have two legs,” I said firmly. “You know how to walk, so use them. I cannot help you all the time. How are you going to exercise your legs and make them strong? You’ll be a cripple all your life. Do you want to be a cripple?”
He was hardly listening to me.
Flopped on the floor of the mall with people milling around us, he stared at me like I was some ogre refusing to help this rotund ... person and refused to budge.
It was getting embarrassing! I spent my life crossing swords with my dad, who loved to make his mild stroke appear more serious than it really was.
Was history repeating?
Still, there he was, stagnated on the shiny mall floor, where a million shoes carrying a zillion germs had trod, arguing with me with his big brown eyes and bugs bunny smile.
I groaned, gave in and swung my toddler into my arms.
© Cindy Pereira