PINWHEEL LOVE

PINWHEEL LOVE
By: Darrelyn L. Tutt

Her soul is hidden and tucked away, coming out in unexpected halting intervals.
Sylvia …
I watch for her, listen for her, and assist her in the most aggressive manner possible, enjoying the tidbits of reality that yet compose her aging mind and body.
She is here with me one moment and gone the next.
Her worn hand holds readily and steadily to mine.
Her whims, wants, and trials are articulated without a word through understood body and facial inflection.
She is as vulnerable as a child:
Trusting. Sincere. Simple.
Devoted to mindless tasks and obsessed by scattered fragments of her imagination.
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She speaks of her deceased son and is consumed this day with concern over his grave marker.
I know what will settle her and it’s mine to give.
“Let’s take a ride, Sylvia,” I suggest.
She is quieted immediately by the suggestion … and something akin to the face of a “child at Christmas” meets me. She enjoys the ride immensely and shares the details of faded neighborhood gossip from years gone by with me. For a moment I’m an enlightened guest welcome to privy confidences and sworn to the highest secrecies.
And then …
The memories of neighbors fade away and a mother’s mind is consumed with her deceased son.
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It’s a beautiful cemetery, peaceful and conducive for meditation and reflection. I help her out of the car and she leans into me, entirely invested in the sacred stone which has garnered her concern. We wipe off the marker and my presence withdraws itself by a few steps in order to respect a needed privacy. She prays silently several moments, makes the familiar Catholic “sign of the cross,” and then reaches for me.
She points to a little naked hole in the ground and is bothered by the missing “pinwheel” that has been robbed from her son’s grave.
The little “pinwheel” is a creative colorful reminder to her of her son;
the wind blows through it and a mother’s eyes see her child.
I hold her hand and suggest we replace it … and the “child face at Christmas” appears again.
We make our way to a local Dollar Store and I pray that a pinwheel can be located in it.
Wonder of wonders ….
A delightful box of rainbow colored pinwheels meets my eyes and I know that it's God.
I select a neon green one and blow on it upon my exit from the store and the beautiful face of a joyful aged mother, in the passenger seat of my car, nods an affirmative “yes” with the thumbs-up.
“We did good,” she says.
She holds my hand and we drive silently back together engaged in private thoughts of our own. We return to the stone and the small pleasure of a colorful pinwheel adorning her son’s grave is placed beside it.
She asks me to blow on it and is satisfied, consoled, and quieted.
Sylvia …
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There are things we do daily to show love …
sometimes the cost is great and sometimes the cost is small.
But I think the thing that’s most desirable, in the end, is a combination of time and thoughtfulness.
When we love beautifully and not dutifully,
creatively and not condemningly …
the colors of a pinwheel emerge.
Pinwheel Love.
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