The Turn of a Doorknob

I’m sitting in the dark.

I’m sitting in a wonderful place – a place I love. No, it isn’t home, but it has that hearth-warm, glowing feel. When I am here, memories pour over me like surf on the sand nearby and make my heart smile.

And the sun is rising outside, pasting orange and gold on a singular blue backdrop. The pastel sky is cloudless thus far. I can hear the static pounding of waves just over the hum of the ceiling fan revolving haphazardly out of balance. I type. I’m on my second pot of coffee. I write stories in the growing light because I don’t sleep anymore.

I wait.

I wait to hear the doorknob turn.

Finally, the doorknob turns, the door creaks opens and I hear the slap of little, bare feet on the hard tile beating a cadence. The marching gets louder and louder until a sleepy-eyed beauty is beside my chair waiting patiently for me to move my laptop. When I do, she piles in with me, her soft hair nuzzled against the pocket of my neck. Even though she is getting big, she fits. She always fits. She fills the void perfectly.

She doesn’t talk. She just soaks up my presence, my hereness… our hereness.

I kiss her head while we snuggle. And the murky world outside with its pain and chaos fades away because I have this thing… this perfect thing – right here. Right here.


Only the doorknob doesn’t turn.

No matter how much I will it to turn and no matter how many times my brain hears the phantom click that marks its beginning, it never turns. Never.

I am alone.

And I sit typing, because I don’t sleep.

And the pain and chaos is inside – inside this room and inside of my weary mind because the doorknob never turns.

What I wouldn’t give to hear it click just one more time. Just one more time.


Just one more hug.

Just one more kiss.

Just one more smile.

Just one more I Love You.


I would mortgage everything for just one more. Only I can’t. I won’t hear the pounding of those little feet ever again, so I pound on this keyboard while a soft rain begins to fall outside my window.

And waves of memories hit me, engulf me, and then recede back with the tide. I reach for each one and beg them not to go. But no matter how tightly I hold my hands they slip through the cracks of my fingers. I build a castle with sand and make them my moat. We built sand castles together… here… back when it was good.

I remember how good. I remember she was here. Kylie was here – in this place.

And I love this place – even when it rains outside and even when it pours inside me. Because she is here. If I close my eyes and remember hard enough, I still can feel her hereness. Since I can’t have just one more, this will have to be enough.


And I will never stop listening for the turn of a doorknob.


Beach Kylie



Doorknob Photo Credit: Josh Vaughn via Flickr under the Creative Common License








Prospector Dances & Brazilians in Leggings

I am typing this on the last day of our vacation to the place where the mouse takes all your money. We saved, scrimped, used Christmas presents and Visa points…and now its just about gone. But it has been a fantastic trip. So why, you might ask, am I wasting time blogging on our last day?

We have come here a handful of times, and when our children were napping ages, we never went to our room for a break. We just powered through and let them crash at night. It seems the teenagers can’t do that. So during the crowded afternoon hours, we’ve been coming back to the room and napping. Only I don’t nap well – I stare at the ceiling.

They have these things now called, “Extra Magic Hours”! These hours are great for our night-owlish kids because most people leave the park around ten and they stay open until 1 am (or 3 am tonight). But they are deadly for middle-aged men. At about 11 my mind can no longer focus on much and at midnight, I get all swimy-headed, which makes some of the wilder rides more like acid trips complete with delusions like Dumbo’s elephants on parade. But it’s all good. We’re having a wonderful time and I wish it didn’t have to end.

Random observations:

1. I love multicultural experiences. I really do. I love seeing the name tags here and talking to people from around the world. If you have ever come here in winter, you know that it is summer in South America and the parks are filled with Brazilians. They fascinate me because it is hard to tell an American from a Brazilian by quick glance. Sometimes you have to get close enough to hear if they are speaking Portuguese or English. Often, the leggings give it away. The South Americans we have seen have fully embraced leggings and yoga pants, and unfortunately, it isn’t always confined to women. I don’t think that is a particularly good look for me, so I’m hoping that style trend doesn’t cross the gender line north of the equator.image

2. At the end of It’s a Small World, they wish you good-bye in many languages. One of them is Arabic and the word is written:  Ma’assalama. For the immature, it really stands out as a fine way to wish someone well in their journeys. I’ve used it many times to the embarrassment of the girls and confused stares of my fellow park-hoppers.



3. The prospectors dance is real gold!

In one of the late, swimmy-headed hours, I did this little jig at Thunder Mountain Railroad and my kids decided I had to do it on command for them. I’ve done it pretty much everywhere now. In fact, at Dance Time with the Incredibles, I got Mr. Incredible to join me, but Frozone was too cool for it. Oh well, he was wearing blue leggings anyway.

Back to the real world tomorrow, but I’m about to wake them up for some extra magic. I love these ladies!