He helped move toys from the living room to the kitchen. He brought me the Tivo remote while I sat at the computer. He opened and shut doors around the house and even tossed a pair of shoes down the laundry chute.
I didn’t ask for the help but my 20-month son, Kai, decided to help anyway.
He loves the vacuum and has to be in the same room keeping an eye on it. He doesn’t get too close and will scurry out of the way if I push it towards him. Today I’d figured I’d see if I could convince him to step close enough to grab hold of the handle and push it around with my help.
After a minute of convincing him everything would be OK, he extended his left arm towards the handle. He finally grabbed it, and I helped him guide it from room to room. At first he struggled to keep up. I slowed down so he could grip the handle with both hands. He had that “I’m thrilled and scared to death at the same time” look on his face.
When we finished it took as long to pry his little hands off the handle as it did to clean the living room. He then ran down the hallway yelling one of the few words he knows, “Mom!! Mom!!”
I assumed that would be my memory of this low-key Independence Day.
But tonight, I jumped on Twitter and saw this:
I sat there staring at my monitor for what must have been 15 minutes. My youngest son isn’t quite two yet. And Lincoln is only six. How would I react to losing an adult son knowing the next time I see his body it will be encased in a coffin.
I hope next year it doesn’t take something like this for me to remember the freedoms we celebrate are protected and defended by brave soldiers like David’s son.