A Walk with Michael
    Footnotes
    Theme

    “A Walk with Michael,” Ensign, Oct. 1982, 55

    A Walk with Michael

    When one has a special three-year-old boy for a companion, the day takes on a different pace. Michael came home from a homemaking meeting with me and we spent the afternoon together. He lay down but didn’t sleep, just “tumble rested.” We read three stories. Then we took a shovel to dig one carrot in the garden as we picked other produce, then went for a walk.

    We stopped at the concrete culvert by the driveway to observe the water swirling as it went under the road, then two white dogs joined us as we walked east across the boulevard. One dog insisted on walking behind Michael and me.

    We rested on the borrow-pit grass under a black walnut tree and talked about the green husked nuts. Each fallen grasshopper on the road was checked carefully, as was a dead butterfly resting on a leaf.

    The climax of our walk was crossing the swift-flowing stream that courses through our pasture and under the road to Rock Creek. The water rushes over the rocky bottom with a “come hither” splash that always fascinates boys. Michael threw in a few small rocks then lay down on his stomach to feel and hear and see the motion of the water more intimately. After that, we returned home.

    Next morning as I crossed that stream I saw the toe marks of his tennis shoes in the graveled roadside where he had lain. Just to see those faint lines in the dust, not meaningful at all to anyone else, made my throat hurt with gladness for my walk with Michael, and I felt thankful for the unspeakable joy of having children. Janell R. Arrington, Twin Falls, Idaho