Conversation the day before Elijah’s birthday
Bumpa (Grandpa): Tomorrow’s your birthday, Elijah!
Elijah: Yeah, tomorrow I’m gonna to be five! I’m gonna be a BIG boy tomorrow!!!
I remember when you walked with your hands behind your back, like Grandpa. You don’t remember because you were little. I don’t think you’ve seen this video Grandma took.
You were only 15 months back then. You’re much bigger now, but you’ve always been big in my eyes. Tomorrow you’ll be another year older.
Yeah! I’ll be five! I won’t be four anymore. I’ll be big a big boy!
Elijah opens his eyes with great expectations, checks out his hands, his feet, his arms and legs, and bursts into tears. Hearing his sobbing, Mommy does what good mothers do. She comes to console him.
Mommy: What’s wrong, honey? It’s your birthday. Did you have a bad dream?
Does your tummy hurt this morning?
Does your throat hurt?
No. Don’t ya know? You know!!!
I don’t, honey. I won’t know unless you tell me.
Uh-uh!!! You know everything. Mommies always know.
Well, I don’t unless you tell me. Today’s a happy day. It’s your birthday. You’re not four anymore. Today you’re five! You’re a big boy now!
I’m not! Bumpa lied!!! I’m just the same. I’m not bigger! I’m still four!
Honey, Grandpa wouldn’t lie to you. Did he tell you your arms and legs would get bigger over night?
He did. He said I’d be bigger on my birthday. Bumpa lied!!!
Did he say you’d wake up bigger on did he say you’d wake up older today?
Whatever! Bumpa’s confused and confusing. I’m not walking like him anymore!
Gordon C. Stewart, Public Theologian, author of Be Still! Departure from Collective Madness (2017 Wipf and Stock), 49 two to four page social commentaries on faith and life. Writing from Brooklyn Park, MN, May 23, 2022.