Ooh, it was a war in Etobicoke that Friday morning.
Mommy had said “No.”
Five year old son tried all of the usual arguments, yelling and crying, but Mommy would not see reason.
Finally FYO had had it. He was sick of being ordered around. He was fed up with these two resident goons who bullied him just because he was too small to defeat them.
“I’m leaving. I’m not going to live here any more. I’m going to live at Grandy and Grandad’s house”
His mother told him how sad she would be without him and how much she would miss him. With teary eyes and trembling lip he held his ground. Separation had become necessary and they would all just have to live with his decision, no matter how painful.
Outside he went, wearing his winter jacket but sockless in his running shoes.
A free spirit, he packed nothing for his journey. However, he did take along his little sister who rode cheerfully behind him in the wagon.
FYO knew that Mommy would have to follow them to keep them safe on the trek, but as long as she lagged an appropriate distance behind the wagon, he could deal.
His grandparents’ house was half a mile away, a route of several streets and corner turns, but he had no problem leading the way. He dragged the wagon and his sister for the entire fifteen minutes, up and down hills, determined in his quest for a more congenial home life.
When they got to Grandy and Grandad’s his mother stopped at the end of the driveway to watch what he would do.
FYO, always sweet with his sister, lifted her out of the wagon and then walked away from them both toward the house. When he reached the porch he turned to look at Mommy. He gave a little goodbye wave and watched her wave in return.
Resolutely, he turned his back and knocked.
The unknowing grandparents opened their front door with questioning faces.
“Oh, what a nice surprise! We didn’t know who it was knocking.
Come on in, Sweetheart!”
Come on in, Sweetheart!”
They noticed no sign of distress on his dear little face and assumed that he and his mom and sister were just dropping by.
His mother stepped inside for a minute to check with her parents.
FYO to grandparents: “I’m staying here.”
FYO: “For a long time.”
FYO: “For a day….. or two.”
Mommy: “FYO has decided he’s moving in with you”.
After his mother and sister left, he happily played pick-up sticks, and assembled puzzles with his grandparents. He made no mention of his early morning decision and his grandparents weren’t crazy enough to jog his memory. At lunchtime he ate his favourite pre-kindergarten grilled cheese sandwich, and without protest, got his outdoor clothes back on and said goodbye to Grandy.
His mother had promised to bring to the school his backpack with socks and snack inside, so Grandad drove him straight to kindergarten. After school, his mother picked him up as usual and FYO slept the night in his own bed.
That was the end of that.
The best love is the kind where, when you run away mad, you are always welcome to come back.
(for a similar story, see the book of Luke, Chapter 15, in the Bible)