Tuesday, April 11, 2017

One Thousand And Seven

Tuesday was Venturers for Rudi, and as Katherine was going to her parent support group meeting in Kitchener, I took Alexander with me to Stratford to pass the two hours of time between dropping Rudi off and picking him up.

I needed some gas for the van, and Alexander had suggested we visit Tim Horton's (for his very own donut, perhaps?).  On driving out Ontario Street, we passed Dairy Queen, and Alexander suggested we could skip Timmies and go there instead. I suggested that if he came up with three good reasons for visiting Dairy Queen, we could get dessert...  Naturally I got three good reasons, with a fourth as an added bonus!

After some regular octane fuel for the van and high octane fuel for us, in the form of medium sized DQ Blizzards, we headed off to Stratford Public Library to check things out.  Alexander led me downstairs into the kids section, which we had all to ourselves.  We explored the shelves, but eventually Alexander got over to the young kids play and reading area, and began building a wooden block barn with henhouse, so I came over and lent him a hand.

The familiarity of that room began to grow on me now, so I asked Alexander if he remembered the times we came here in the past, those evenings when Rudi was in Scouts, and Katherine was at Orchestra in Kitchener. We would always visit this room in the library, and I would read him books and we would play, for an hour or more, until we had to leave to pick Rudi up.  Our occasional Tuesday nights out, which ran for at least a few years, ended in the late spring of 2014, but because of Rudi getting sick, they never started again.

And on that thought, for about the thousandth time, I began to feel overwhelmed, and the almost hollow feeling, the foamy surge before the crashing storm, began to rise up in my chest. And the Lilliputian army of men and beasts, thousands strong, set to work in an instant, Timbers felled into line were braced and bolted, sections of palisade were heaved and pulled upright, and made fast against bastions of stone, ditches were dug and earthworks raised  And just as the work was completed the explosion of emotion began to break against the walls.  And for the thousandth time, the hastily assembled defences held fast and stood tall, and I was able to not break down and cry.

And then the questions started to fill my mind. What has Alexander lost in three years? Anything? Has he been neglected? have we been kinder or more favorable to Rudi? How will the last three years affect him? Or will he be affected at all?