One day before Mother's Day, I thought I'd tell you a remarkable mother story about my wife, Elysha Dicks.
About five years ago, Elysha and the kids were having dinner at a local restaurant with a friend and his two children. Clara was four years-old at the time, and Charlie was still an infant.
About 10 minutes after sitting down at the table, a waiter spilled a full glass of wine on Clara. She was drenched in red wine. She was not happy in a very four year-old way.
Elysha picked up Clara and exited the restaurant, leaving infant Charlie with her dinner companion and his two small children.
She brought our daughter to the car to clean her up and quickly determined that Clara’s shirt was not salvageable. She offered Clara one of her brother’s shirts, which happened to be in the car. It would be tight, but it might work.
Clara refused in a very unhappy four year-old way.
She offered the shirt off her own back.
She offered to reverse the unsalvageable shirt as a temporary solution.
As any parent will tell you, forcing any of these shirts onto a raging four year-old would’ve been impossible.
Elysha needed a shirt of some kind for Clara so that they could, at minimum, reenter the restaurant to reclaim our baby and return home.
Naturally, he phone was still at the table, so having our friend bring Charlie to the car was not possible.
With no other options, Elysha crossed the street and walked over to the nearest house. She knocked on the door. A man and a woman answered.
Elysha explained the situation and asked the couple if she could borrow a tee shirt for the evening.
Take a moment and let that sink in. In need of a shirt for my daughter to wear so that she could reenter a restaurant and reclaim our baby, my wife walked to a nearby house, knocked on a stranger’s door, and requested a tee shirt.
The couple gave her a white tee shirt and sent her on her way.
Clara ultimately refused to wear the newly acquired shirt. Instead, she chose to turn her wine-strained shirt around instead.
Elysha and Clara re-entered the restaurant, calmed our now-screaming baby, and completed the meal, which ended up costing them nothing.
Do you know any other person on the planet who would attempt such a thing?
I didn't think so, then it occurred to me that Elysha’s solution was remarkably similar (albeit more ethical and decidedly less criminal) to something I did when I was young and in desperate need of gas money in New Hampshire.
Nearly identical, in fact.
I’ve always thought that Elysha and I were cut from the same cloth. I was just cut from the raggedy, soiled edges of the cloth and she was carefully cut from the pristine middle.