Frank is a pain. He leaves dirty dishes everywhere. He leaves the bread open everytime. He is incapable of wiping up a spill. He leaves his sneakers in the middle of the floor. He leaves the toilet seat up!
He is hot tempered.
We fight. We yell.
He never applies himself unless it's about soccer.
Everytime I see those canines shifting back to their old spots because he wouldn't wear the retainer......and think about how much those braces cost.......I want to strangle him.
Today was the first soccer game of the spring season. We had to be there early to get shirts and schedules, etc. Some of the boys hadn't seen each other in a bit, there are several different schools involved. Frank greeted almost everyone who walked up, he is quite social. As the boys took to the field a woman came up and asked if I was Frank's mother. She told me how much it meant to her that Frank greets her son. Her son is deaf and does tend to stand off to the side when the boys get together. So I made some crack about Frank being very social. The woman looked at me ernestly and said that her son has been playing with some of these boys for years and the others don't reach out that way. So, I said "Well, Frank's the mayor!" and smiled. We watched the game and I paid attention to the boys interactions and her son seemed to be very much included. I think in the game, the boys treat her son as one of the group, I think they are just ackward off of the field.
So I thought about Frank while I watched the game.............all the really great things. He is loyal to a fault, open and generous, tall and handsome...and to watch him play soccer is amazing. Little kids stand against the chainlink fence of the ballpark across from our front door and wait for Frank to come out, hoping he'll play with them. And he is so good with them. In the winter he shovels out the hydrants around us and some of the older neighbors on the QT. When the beach association had cleanup projects he is always front and center even though some adults are less than gracious about teenagers in general and Frank's gang in particular. And so many other small kindnesses.
As he walked toward his girlfriend and I after the game I put out my arms to hug him. He looked surprised of course, we are not touchy/feely people. I tried to tell him about Mark's mother but I got so choked up, I'm sure he didn't understand half of it. He said "ok" and turned to his friends and we all walked to the parking lot. His friends got in their car and Frank walked over to me and we just stood there for a minute and smiled at each other. Then he got in the front seat and his girlfriend drove him away.