Amazing Kids! Magazine

Today’s the Day

By Lakesha Landrum, age 18, Georgia

 

Today was the day. I took a deep breath and stretched my arms over my head. Today the sun was shining and the sky was a bright blue through my bedroom window. Jumping from my bed, I rushed to it and threw the window open. The birds greeted me with the morning chatter, arguing about worms or some other such nonsense. I looked down at the street and greeted Paul, the garbage man, as he tossed our trash into the back of his old truck. He was always there bright and early, even on Saturdays.

Rushing away from the window and to my closet, I threw open the doors and began tossing clothes about. I needed my red shirt, the one with the smiley face on it. It was my lucky one and I wore it as often as I could, which was every day. Not finding it, I rushed from my room and pounded downstairs where I could hear my parents talking in the kitchen.

Coming around the door full speed, I crashed headlong into my father. Muttering a quick “excuse me”, I tried to angle around him, only to find myself hoisted in the air. I squealed with glee as he tossed me into the air. For you see, my father is quite tall and he was often in my imagining a mighty and powerful oak tree. I’ve often thought he came from the land of giants, his shoes were huge and I would often take his boots and go stomping around the house pretending I was a giant as well, terrorizing the local town folk.

“Whoa!” he said, deep voice booming. “What’s the rush?” setting me down to catch my breath, he squatted down to my level. “Where are you off to in such a hurry?” his eyes sparkled as he smiled. He was the kindest father. He would often sneak me treats when mommy wasn’t looking and protect me even when I caused mischief. I loved him dearly.

“Today is the day, father!” I shouted eager to be on my way. “I just need to find my shirt. You know the red one with the huge smiley face on it?” I kept trying to peek over his shoulder to the laundry room beyond the kitchen. Mom was standing there; hand over her mouth stifling laughter as he blocked my way. Now my mom was a tiny thing compared to dad. Honestly, it was like seeing a pixie marry a red wood tree or something. She was also incredibly kind, and did I mention beautiful? Of course all kids think their mom is beautiful. But I think my mom is far prettier. I personally think she’s also an angel.

My favorite thing about my mom is her curly hair and violet – yes, violet – eyes. Today her hair was pulled up into a kind of a bun, which looked like a fluffy halo while her eyes sparkled with silenced laughter. Sticking my tongue out at her, I managed to squeeze around dad and run to her and throw my arms around her waist. Hearing dad give chase, I hid behind her and giggled.

“Now, now,” she said, her British accent giving the words a sweet lilt. “Don’t be chasing my baby,” she smiled up at my dad as he leaned down to kiss her.

Gagging, I ran into the laundry room. Spotting my shirt, I immediately tugged it on over my pajamas. Running back into the kitchen I spied my dad sitting at the table with a cup of coffee in one hand and a tablet in the other. Sneaking up behind him, I grabbed him in a quick hug and pecked him on the cheek. Giggling as he laughed and made a grab for me, I ran back upstairs into my room.

Grabbing a pair of shorts and dashing into the bathroom across the hall, I could barely contain myself. Brushing my teeth, I stared into the mirror. I had gleefully inherited my mother’s eyes and from somewhere, freckles across my skin. My dad called me his café au lait with sprinkles. I giggled as I rinsed my mouth. Dressing, I grabbed my shoes and hopping on one foot as I tied my laces, I went back into the hallway.

Hearing my parents whispering I stopped and peeked downstairs. They were standing at the door. Both were holding packages and smiling at one another. They looked so happy and pleased with themselves. My mom turned and saw me peeking and her smile widened as if to say, “I know you’re there!” Coming down the stairs, I smiled as they both held out a hand for me to hold. It made my heart beat a little bit faster. My dad opened the door and we stepped out into the day.

“Are you ready?” my mom asked, looking at me as we walked to the car. I watched as dad opened the trunk and placed all that he and my mother were holding into the trunk of the car. My mind breamed with curiosity.

All I knew was today was the day. So rolling my shoulders and straightening my spine I declared, “I was born ready!” and with that, my mom and dad looked at each other and laughed long and hard.

“Now comes the hard part,” my mom said. “You need to cover your eyes.” I looked down at her outstretched hand and in it was a blindfold.  “Well,” she said as I continued to stare at her outstretched hand. “It is a surprise,” she smiled as I nodded hesitatingly. Gentle tying the mask across my eyes, I felt my mom gently guide me to the car.

The car was soon in motion. I had no idea where we were going or which direction we were headed. We made several turns and at one point felt like we stopped completely. It felt like hours and I couldn’t even read. If I touched the mask, my mom or dad uttered “not yet” and I would immediately return my hands to my lap.

Finally, after what felt like days, the car stopped and I heard the front doors open. I heard dad say he would get the things from the trunk while mom could get me. Feeling the wind from the open door, I turned my head toward the air. “It’s time,” my mom said. “But don’t touch the mask.” Getting more nervous, I dropped my hands again to my sides.

Feeling her hand grab mind, I walked slowly as she guided me step by step. Watch out for that rock here or take a step up there. I felt the rush of cool air as a door opened and closed. I felt it a second time as my father came in behind us. Still following my mother, I felt myself being guided to sit down. Sitting, I once again reached for my mask only to find my hand pulled gently away. Frowning and starting to feel quite grumpy, I slumped down in the chair. Petting my head, I felt my mother move away and begin speaking with someone in the room.

Feeling a weight press down into the seat next to me, I turned toward it and whispered, “Dad is it you?” I felt a hand touch my head gently and I smiled. “Can I take this off now? It’s itchy.”

Laughing, Dad said, “Not yet, or at least until your mother says it’s okay.”

Sighing, I slumped back down into my seat. I felt my father get up and say something to my mother and heard her giggle. Frowning, I began to wiggle impatiently in my seat. What were they talking about? What were we waiting on? I was really starting to lose patience, when my mom said, “Now!”

Snatching off the blindfold and blinking against the sudden glare of the room, my eyes widened as I looked into the eyes of a Labrador puppy. His tail was wagging furiously as he tried his hardest to lick my face. Blinking slowly and looking up at my parents, my voice squeaked out finally, “For me?” They nodded and tears began spilling down my cheeks.

The squirming pile of cute was placed on my lap and promptly proceeded to lick my face. As I giggled through the onslaught, I looked up at my parents. Dad was taking pictures and Mom was trying not to cry. Her eyes were brimming with tears and she looked so proud. I looked around to see where I was and saw it was the Puppy Heart Rescue Center. We had been here a few months ago and I fell in love with a sweet golden puppy and now he was mine.

“Today’s the day sweetheart,” my mom said. “You had no idea how hard it was keeping this from you,” she said as she touched the puppy’s nose and he promptly slobbered all over her finger. “He’s all yours!”

Smiling down at the puppy as he yawned and snuggled down in my lap, Dad brought the wrapped packages and placed them beside me. “In these,” he said, “is everything you will need to get your new puppy up and running – food, leashes, collar, bowls for food and water, and a tag for the name. We even hid a doggy bed in our closet,” he laughed. “So,” he said watching the sleeping puppy, “what are you going to name him?”

I looked down at the puppy and then with a huge smile, I proudly proclaimed, “His name shall be Today.”