Friday, October 10, 2014

Parents and Small Gestures

They stand framed in the window
waving goodbye. It's a small gesture. 
It feels like they're glad we came.  

Now we stand 
waving as you leave. 
It means you matter. 
We cherish making
new memories.
You wanting to come
home to be with us 
is a gift. Believe
you're beloved. 
It's good to see you.

When anyone left their home, Craig's folks always went out on the porch and waved them off. They said it was a Norwegian custom. One time Craig's cousin left while the full house of relatives finished stories and cake. We all noticed him leave, but neglected waving him off. After a few minutes we saw lights coming up the driveway and snow flying as he did a donut in front of the picture window. Todd came in shaking snow off his coat and boots. He stood crestfallen, waiting for us to quiet down, then he said, "We need a redo. I'm going to leave again. Nobody waved to me from the porch. What happened?" 

We gave him the best send off in the history of the family. Babies were held up. Toddlers looked through legs. The window framed us all waving with gusto and laughter. A longstanding tradition stood firm, unchanged. 

Maybe these small gestures keep us off the streets?