Words Between Generations

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Daily Post Writing Challenge: Give and Take

Focus today’s post on the contrast between two things. The twist? Write the post in the form of a dialogue.

 

GIllian shifted her weight, settling into the cushioned wicker chair. Her usually smiling mouth stiffened into a rigid line as she stared into her glass of iced lemonade. The comforts of her impeccably decorated screened-in porch seemed stale today.

Why does it always have to be so awkward?

Being around her 11-year old grandson was never easy, even though she had been taking care of him every Saturday for almost 6 months now. Even though Ry didn’t know it, his very presence reminded GIllian of how much she had failed to bond with his father, her only child. It didn’t help that he was so very ecstatic to see her. Gillian wasn’t sure where the hostility stemmed from, though she secretly suspected that Ry’s ex-junkie mother, Sindie, had something to do with it. Sindie was less than fond of her ex-husband, and probably blamed Gillian for, well, god knows what. Darren. Even now, his name bore a pit in the base of her stomach. How she wished…

“So, Ry, what would you like to do today?” GIllian posed the question in her “fake cheery” voice, feeling a twinge of guilt as she did. Did she really think today would be different?

The dark haired boy looked up briefly from his gaming device and scowled.

“C’mon, bud, it’s a beautiful spring day…how about we go get some fresh air?” Her heart sank as she felt her tone of voice rise. Why can’t I break this pattern? She could basically predict his response by now.

“Don’t wanna.” This time, Ry didn’t even bother to glance up.

Gillian rose from her chair with a sigh and escaped into her kitchen. Of all the questions clouding her psyche, one stuck out with burning ferocity.

Why can’t I fix this?! C’mon, Gil. There’s gotta be something he’ll respond to.

With new resolve, Gillian headed back out to the porch. She stood in the doorway, silently raising the courage to try to break through through her grandson’s looming walls.

“Ya don’t have to pretend, ya know.”

Ry’s muttered statement almost knocked the wind out of her.

“How…what do you mean by that, Ry?”

The boy looked up and scowled. Wrong answer, Gil. She took a deep breath and tried again.

“Okay, you’re right. I’m sorry.”

To her surprise, the boy broke away from the death glare he was giving his device, peering questioningly as his grandmother.

“You are?”

“Yes, Ry. I haven’t been treating you fairly – you’re much more mature than I give you credit for.” Gillian hoped with everything that this would work.

Ry squirmed in his seat, unsettled by his grandmother’s new approach. The gaming device, now lying discarded in his lap, continued to beep and flash like an insistent one-sided conversation.

“Oh.” The one-word reply spoke volumes, for his tone had shifted from its usual surly defiance to one that hinted at a hidden vulnerability.

Gillian smiled warmly at her grandson and stepped back into the kitchen to grab the lemonade pitcher. After refilling Ry’s glass, she decided to splurge and add a little gin to her own. Why not celebrate a bit for achieving such a monumental victory? That one word, one sound at that, had changed the course of her entire day…maybe even the entirety of her relationship with Ry. No matter what happened today, Gillian had broken through to her grandson like she had never been able to with Darren. Maybe this would be her second chance.

 

 

 

 

 

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About claireaudient

North Carolina girl, born and raised, though now I consider Vermont to be home as well. I guess you could say I'm a migrant gypsy farmer, if you were prone to saying such things. I've played the whole society game; I've been to three different colleges, have an Associate's Degree (in Liberal Studies, or something like that), and have worked more restaurant jobs than I care to admit. Through a curious series of events, however, I've formed a different perspective on what life means to me. Instead of slaving away at a job I hate to eke out a mediocre life staring at a shiny screen, I'm living out my dream to travel while learning organic farming and sustainability practices. It's not always easy, but leaving the comforts of routine to experience the wonders of the universe was a choice I will never regret. <3

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