Jan Krause Greene
I Might Not Floss Tonight
Flossing matters. Flossing will keep me healthy. Flossing is of the utmost importance!
But, I might not floss tonight.
Tonight my grandson lies sleeping in the guestroom.
I will sleep with him so that he won’t wake in fear.
His mom and dad are wide-awake – keeping watch over baby brother.
First a fever, sudden seizure, breathing stopped, baby brother is limp and blue.
CPR! Ambulance! Emergency Room! Life and Death in the balance.
But my grandson, sleeping sweetly, does not know how close we came to death.
He does not know how scary it is for us because we do know how close.
I rushed to hospital to wait, to help…..oh, if only I could.
To be there for the answer, no matter what it was.
To see my son – a man, a father – look so frightened, so in need.
I touched his shoulder, so much bigger than mine, and hoped that strength and courage
Could flow from my unstrong and uncourageous heart
Into his heart to make strong and brave, my son, a father.
If I could give him that…well that would be more than almost anything I had ever given.
Prompted by my touch, tears, little tiny vessels of pain and fear,
Fall silently and embarrassedly from his eyes.
What could I offer, but love?
And a mother’s promise that everything would be okay.
How many times have I said those words?
Never knowing if they are true.
Hoping, please, yes, let it be okay.
Sleeping grandson dreams with a little smile on rosy lips.
He does not know how scared the adults were.
He is having an adventure.
Food from a vending machine.
A late night ride with grammy and grampy.
An unexpected sleepover.
No pajamas packed, he sleeps in his favorite superhero undies and rumpled T-shirt.
I look at his sweet face, so free from fear and I know that flossing takes too long.
When innocent child lies sleeping he is the keeper
Of hope and rainbows and everything will be okay.
I will sleep with him so that I won’t wake in fear.
I have no time to waste. I will not floss tonight.
©Jan Krause Greene
First and foremost, I am a mother and grandmother. I formed my opinions about life at an early age and they haven’t really changed much since then – I believe war does not create lasting solutions, love will be the real revolution, and the human heart can expand until it holds love for the whole world. I have been a teacher, a newspaper columnist, a bank teller, a house cleaner, an executive director of a non-profit dedicated to education advocacy, a diversity trainer, AIDS activist, a group facilitator, and a waitress. Whatever it took to raise 5 kids and remain true to my values. I can’t carry a tune, but I love to sing and don’t know any steps, but I love to dance!
I have always used writing as a way to reflect on my own life and as a way to examine life’s big questions. I have just started blogging recently. Mostly I have been concentrating on fiction and poetry.
My first novel, I CALL MYSELF EARTH GIRL, is now available on Amazon.