For His Wife’s Sake

She sat on the curb watching the other kids play. She had a tank top on that was too tight. She was old enough to be wearing a bra but she didn’t own one. This shirt definitely showed her need of one.

Her shorts were too short and they cut off her waist. She kept sucking in her gut to try to gain some room so the button  would quit digging in her skin but she couldn’t  hold her breath that long.

Her shoes had holes in the tops and she could see her big toe wiggling out of the top. She had no socks on so her heel blisters were burning  bad. She did the best to comb her hair before she went out the front door, but it was hot, and she needed a ponytail holder.

She felt like she didn’t fit in. No one liked her and no one ever said a word to her. Her mother sat home with a bottle attached to her hand. She could care less about anything except that she had the drink in her.

Her father had left her mother years ago because her mother was a drunk. But why did papa leave me behind too? Why didn’t he take me with him? Mother doesn’t like me either.

As thoughts twisted through her mind tears began to fall. She took her dirty hand and wiped them away. The kids at the park took no notice of her. She had one friend but since school was out for the summer she wouldn’t see her until school started again.

Across the street from the park a woman cried her heart out as she watched the little girl each day. She and her husband wanted a child so bad, but she was barren. Here was a child who obviously was not wanted and she wanted a child.

That night at the supper table the wife  told her husband about the little girl on the curb. Her husband saw the pain in his wife’s eyes. He knew how bad she wanted a child. He wasn’t sure if he could adopt or not. Could he love someone else’s child like his own?

He asked his wife when she usually saw the child and his wife said she sat at the park most of the mornings. She must go home around lunch time. He thought well I guess I can get a look at this kid. It’s the least I can do for my wife.

The next day he cancelled one of his meetings and left for home early. When he walked in the front door he saw his wife standing in the bay window crying. He looked to where she was looking and saw the child.

For a brief moment sadness tore at his heart when he saw her tattered clothes. He looked at his wife whom he loved so much and said, “Come on, let’s take a walk over there. Maybe we can find something out about her.”

His wife smiled and the two walked over holding hands. They stood beside the child who turned and looked up at them. She quickly turned back the other way. The two strangers sat down on the curb beside the child. All three stared off in the distance. No one said a word.


Finally the wife asked, “I see you here every day. Could I ask your name?”


“That’s a beautiful name Mary. Don’t you want to go over and play with the kids?”

“No, no one wants to play with me.”

“Well my name is Sue and this is my husband Ed. We will play with you. Would you like to swing?”

Mary shook her head yes and stood up. Ed watched his wife pushing Mary on the swing. Then noticing the time he told Sue he had to get back to the office. Sue told Mary, “We have to go now. Did you enjoy that?”


“Would you like me to come back and swing with you tomorrow?”


Ed didn’t know what to think. He had seen the lonely eyes in the little girl and he saw the yearning in his wife. He thought about Mary throughout the day and he finally decided he would take his lunch break at 11am from now on. He would at least try to get to know this child for his wife’s sake.

A few weeks of this routine went on, and Mary opened up a little more all the time. She confessed that she had to be home from the park by a certain time or her Mother would come looking for her. She told Sue and Ed about her mother and the bottle. She even told them about her sore tummy due to her tight shorts. She explained about her one friend but she wouldn’t be able to see her until school started.

Ed’s heart kept dropping off pieces of wall each week. He began to picture Mary eating supper with them and tucking her in bed at nights. One day when his day was not so rushed he made a call to  his attorney.

In a matter of a month the child’s Mother signed the paper giving up custody. He walked into his home and found Sue sitting by the bay window rocking. He handed her the papers and she read them.

She tossed them on the floor and jumped up giving her husband the biggest hug possible. She grabbed his hand and they raced over to the park. They came upon Mary and this time Mary was smiling at them as they came closer.

They all sat together on the curb. Ed looked at Mary and said, “I can see that your life has not been very good so far Mary. Would you like a chance at having a different life? Maybe some new clothes and new shoes?”

Mary looked at them with hungry eyes. She nodded her head yes but the fear of hope kept her from speaking. Sue patted her lap and asked Mary if she would like to sit on her lap. Mary jumped up and sat in Sues lap. Sue put her arms around the child and hugged her close. She asked,”Mary, Ed and I would love to have a child, but God just didn’t want us to. Now I know why, he knew that we would meet you. Would you like to come and live with us?”

Mary leaned into Sues chest and softly said yes. “Well come on then. Let’s go to your new home and have some lunch. I will show you your new bedroom and then you and I will go shopping for some new clothes.”

With Mary in the middle, Sue and Ed on either side, they walked hand in hand with hearts beaming, smiles showing and love pouring out for all to see.

Business Man

-Poor girl-

A Broken Man

Door handle.

He was filled with excitement. His body was weary. He was clean-shaven for the first time in days. He had just stepped off the plane. He thumbed a ride and now stood in front of the bright red door. What would she say? How would she look?

Oh the memories of her hair, her perfume. The touch of her skin. So soft behind the ears. Wrists that were so tiny and delicate. He had not seen her for over a year. Although letters had been written when there was time it was not the same. His name was Matt and he had been serving in the military for the last six years.

He had served his country well. He had earned many pins and badges. His rank moved up the longer he served. He had went in through a volunteer program. He went in as a skinny wet behind the ears kid and came out a man.

His buddies said that he was the one that would succeed in the outside. He worked the hardest. When others were afraid during the night they went to him. He shared tears for homesickness. He cried at lost lives. He listened while others read aloud letters from back home.

He had started out as a KP, kitchen duty. He peeled hundreds of potatoes by hand every day. He scrambled dozens of eggs and buttered thousands of slices of toast. He did dishes. He scrubbed floors. He even scrubbed toilets.

He could perform exercises quicker than any other man in his troop. He had built himself a name. He had earned respect. When someone mentioned his last name, people sat up and listened.

Eight months ago Matt  was leading his troop into bad areas. Mysteries in the grounds greeted them, but with great skills they always completed their mission. This was his last mission to do and then he was being sent to another location. This was the last time he was going to lead these guys forward.

An explosion rumbled behind them and the last one following got hit. Matt, without thinking ran into harm’s way to save his fellow-man. Another explosion went off and it got his arm and one leg.

He still managed to save this man’s life and his own, but the scars of that final moment in action will be forever lived. Now standing in front of the door, he took his one arm and straightened his tie. He adjusted his hat to make sure it was on straight.

He looked down at the empty sleeve where at one time a limb showed through the cuffs. It was empty now. He had a limp when he walked but he was alive. He had received an honorable discharge.

He had made it. He had traveled many miles to be standing here. He knocked on the door and stood as tall as he could. No one answered. He knocked again, and still silence greeted him.

He didn’t have a key. He had left that behind long ago. His hand reached for the door handle. He tried turning it and it opened easily. It was quiet when he stood inside the door. He gently closed it not wanting to ruin the surprise. He licked his lips in anticipation of giving his wife the biggest kiss she had ever had.

He tiptoed through the familiar rooms and when he came to their bedroom door it was standing partially open. His knees became weak. Tears flowed from his eyes. His heart beat so hard it seemed to push itself through his chest.

He had went into the military a skinny kid and had fought with the best. He had earned the respect from his platoon. But no training on earth had prepared him for this. There was the lady who had kept him going. Her picture was always in his pocket. His memories of her brought him smiles and softened his heart.

The image had been broken. The glass cracked  the mirror in his mind. There was his wife lying in the arms of another man. He turned and took his hat off. He dropped his face. He let his limp feel its full force. He walked back out the way he had come in. Slowly closing the door behind him, a broken man.