Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Bennie's pom pom

Ben, who is proudly five, spent the better part of the morning making a big pom pom out of yarn. I helped him cut out a cardboard donut, around which he carefully wound yards and yards of some nice yarn he found in Nell's closet. He got the idea for this project from a craft book he checked out of the library yesterday. He had been waiting more than 24 hours to make his pom pom. 24 hours is an eternity when you're five. Believe me.

I helped him cut the yarn off the cardboard, and he was delighted to see how it fluffed into a real pom pom. He ran to show Nell and Simon. He kept it in his pocket. When some friends came to play in the afternoon, he bashfully showed it off. He was beaming.

When Brian got home from work, Ben ran to show him the pom pom. It was big and fluffy and cool.

Nell's friend came over after school. She lost her dad about a month ago. He always used to meet her bus. Some days now we go out to the bus stop and she comes home with us. Ben adores her.

She and Ben sat on the couch for a few minutes paging through the craft book. Ben pulled the pom pom from his pocket and handed it to her. "This is really cool," she said.

He looked up at her and said, "It's for you."

"Are you sure, Ben?" she asked. "That's really special."

"Yes," said Ben. "It's for you."

And then he whispered to me, but loud enough that Nell's friend certainly heard, "It's because of what happened to her dad."

Ben cannot fathom what happened to her dad. He's five. But he's doing what he can to help.

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