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Lifting Up the Clouds

Tears dripped off Cara’s eyes. They kept dripping on the coffee table where she positioned herself. She found her eyes darting back to the image of her husband on the coffee table. She couldn’t seem to forget about William. Her face was full of concern.

The female imagined him there next to her on the steaming sofa, baked in the sun. His tall figure with black, smooth hair. His legs were stretched out in front of the sofa because it was a disadvantage of having long legs. He scratched his hair as a usual habit. The sound of friction against hair bellowed in her ears. It sounded like a cat purring.

Cara stared at the picture frame. She found herself standing up from her seat. She took the picture frame from the fireplace and sat down at the nearest chair. She took control over herself again. She put down the picture frame and quietly tiptoed into the bathroom. She turned the water with no sound at all.

Cara felt the cold water splashing up to her face. She quickly awakened herself into a step of reality. Purity came back to her brown eyes. She remembered to go back to the kitchen to chop the onions. That’s what made her cry in the first place. She remembered that washing the onions would help and did that.

Cara glanced at the clock. It was three fifteen. Cara glimpsed around and took her car keys. No way was she going to be late to pick up her children again! Three times in a row was a really bad record. The frustrated mother prayed that the school staff would not yell at her. Cara sighed.

She walked towards the mirror to make sure she was presentable in the public. Her glasses slipped down. She pushed them back on. Her hair was a little messy so she combed it quickly with her fingers. She tucked in her shirt in her skirt, making sure the dress wasn’t wrinkled.
Cara swiftly picked up her car keys and purse. She changed her shoes and walked out of the house. The house smelled of cinnamon and it again reminded her of Josh’s favorite smell. She shuffled to the car.

She started the car as she turned the car keys. She kept looking back in the mirror back at her house as she backed away from her garage. The house was blue. It felt lonely. It was a stick out from all the pretty colors on her neighbors’ houses. Her face seem to be more confused and down. Cara shook her head and drove quickly away.

Handling different tasks was very difficult for Cara. She was not used to managing time. She usually cleaned the house and checked in with the kids. William was the one who brought the groceries and cooked. She rubbed her head at the red light, face in pain, putting herself back in driving mode.

She couldn’t seem to forget about her husband. Cara missed her husband so much that she always blamed it on herself. If she had been there and stopped him from crossing the street, a car would have never crashed him in the first place. She put on the brake and slowly got out of the car. That was the time where she hoped she was an oracle in Greek Mythology that could predict the future. She was now a widow, living everyday life without William.
The chilly fall wet air was upsetting to Cara. She did not like the muddy smell of air and rubbed her nose. Her face wrinkled in disgust when she saw a man with messy clothing.
The widow was fifteen minutes late. Fortunately, no one shouted at her in school. She noticed the look on her children’s face. It was full of disappointment. They stopped in the car and slammed the door very hard that there was a chill down Cara’s spine. It was a feeling she did not usually deal with. Her face was frightened.
“Why did you pick us up late, mommy? This is the fourth time you picked us up late,” Kate asked, the youngest child. Cara noticed that Kate noticed the face Cara was making so she tried to soften it a bit. The five-year-old kid seemed to be furious that Cara picked them up late, but Kate also softened her face as if imitating her.
The lady rolled her eyes. Monkey see, monkey do. Oh, no. Kate did the same thing. Cara noticed she needed to be a better role model for her kids. She needed to cut the bad habits like rolling her eyes and showing her emotions through her face.
“I forgot to peer at the time, dear,” Cara stuttered, trying to explain. She fidgeted with her hands. Her eyes darted around the car, fumbling with something to say. The female remembered to be a better role model for Kate so she pretended to be concentrated on the road ahead.

This woman checked in with every kid as they drove back home. After they got off, she observed Josh and saw the figure of William in Josh. The smooth black hair was there. They walked the same way, too. She remembered that one time that Josh was dressing for kindergarten graduation. She had compared both of them right off the bat. Josh just looked like a miniature of William.

After the widow entered the house and went to the kitchen, she continued cooking. She had cooking to do. She had to do the laundry and clean the floor. There was so much to do, Cara thought, so much to do. She felt as if the whole house with brooms, mops, dirty clothes, and uncooked food sticking out of the house stacked on top of her. The mother screamed help in her head.

Cara’s face looked pale like a ghost. She could kill herself right now because what she was going through. That would leave her kids with no one to take care of them though. They would be put up for adoption. That would not be fair for the kids. Life was such a bummer. Odds stacked against her as if they were blankets and she was freezing.
Cara saw Kate staring at her. Her head tilted as Kate was studying her. Was this her rescue she called for? Kate gazed at her mother’s face. She examined it as if she was playing doctor. She noticed the confusion and sadness on her mother’s face.

“What’s the matter, mommy? Are you sad? Do you need to sit on my lap?” Kate questioned with no doubt. Kate sat on the kitchen chair. She looked serious about the idea she came up with. Her eyes were glaring straight at Cara searching for the softness of her mother. Kate rubbed her skirt with uncertainty if Cara will respond that she was feeling down.

Cara giggled just a bit as she said, “Not much. Did you finish you homework?” She got cheered up a bit, but then, her face returned back to a serious face, realizing Kate probably did not finish her homework.

“No,” Kate muttered. She stared at Cara’s face with fear. Cara’s face give the impression of being mean like a bully. She quickly turned away. She was staring at the door already and knew she would be forced to get out. Then, she made a blank face.

“Then, go back to work,” Cara demanded. She also motioned with her hands for Kate to get out. Kate slumped and stomped out of the kitchen. Kate appeared a little disappointed that Cara lied to her.

Soon, Linda came in and exclaimed, “I can babysit the kids!” Cara figured that Kate told Linda about her own feelings. Cara shook her head.

“No, you are not old enough to baby sit anyone. You’re only in fourth grade,” Cara replied with a straightforward voice. Linda folded her arms with attitude.

“Oh, man. You can put us in afterschool called . . . Henry Street Settlement. The teacher announced it in the morning,” Linda insisted in a sweet honeycomb voice, “You can also assign us chores. I promise I will do my part. I would love to help out in cooking.” She laid her hand on her heart. Linda smiled and beamed from ear to ear, hoping Cara would be very jubilant about her idea. The idea that would lift the rain clouds from Cara’s eyes and eventually show her the brightness of the world no matter how much she was suffering.

Cara was shocked. Sometimes, kids have so much great ideas mothers never knew about. They don’t use their intelligence in their homework. They used it in to cheer up a person’s feelings. It was surprising. Her mouth was hanging open. She could just appreciate the fact her children were here accompanying her every step in life.

“Yes, Linda, you can do that. Josh can do the dishes, and Kate can clean up your toys so I can sweep and mop the floor,” Cara murmured and hugged Linda. She also gave her a smooch.

“Hey! Don’t you remember I don’t like kisses?” Linda shrieked. Cara smiled and appreciated Linda’s response.




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