Ghosts of Red Rover

My husband’s oncologist’s office is next to an elementary school and by the time we arrived this morning for his appointment, the kids were already out on the playground for their morning recess. I gathered our bags and coffee cups from the car and I smiled to myself at hearing the raucous screams and laughter of the kids. As we walked toward the door, I stopped and placed my hand on my husband’s arm and asked him, “Wow, do you smell that?”

The moisture in the air from the coming rain warmed by the sun’s rays layered with the children’s voices wove together to become a tactile explosion of memory fueled even further by the shower of dropping leaves around us. All of a sudden I was back to being seven years old again, running around playing tag and Red Rover in the playground of my grammar school.

It seemed as though a thousand memories and feelings flashed in my mind in one second and it felt so good to feel that carefree again, where my biggest worry was trying to stay ahead of Colleen while I dodged Laura and Pat on the schoolyard in the race to avoid being tagged “it”.

Maybe it’s that my birthday is coming up or the fact that I’ve always loved this time of the year but my mood was melancholy to begin with and it didn’t need much more of a nudge to wax poetic. The very adult me who was accompanying my husband to the oncologist office, smiled at the memory of the (much) younger, innocent, me and mentally told her that everything will be okay and that things will work out. Then I took my husband’s hand, and walked inside.

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