Yesterday, I was driving on Telegraph Road and saw a mother and son taking a walk. The mother was, as many parents do, videotaping him on his discovery walk. The reason, though, is more likely because he was in a gait trainer. A gait trainer is a piece of durable medical equipment (DMEs oh how I haven't missed you!) that assists the physically disabled to learn to walk more easily. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gait_trainer. This kid was clearly so determined. His toes dragged, but he kept pulling them forward, one after the other, pushing his foot ahead and then moving the other one. I almost pulled over or lowered my window to holler support to him. But by the time I got home, I was so simultaneously happy and sad I could barely speak. Happy for him and his family! Sad for missing Connor, though his gait training days were far in the past now. Connor used a gait trainer in pre-K 4/5s, with Robin in her classroom.
Some days, I bet we all wish we had a real or metaphorical gait trainer. Something that helped us stay upright and true and took some of the weight-bearing off so that we could focus on getting one foot in front of the other. So we construct them, out of our networks and our families - the structures that bear us up when we are feeling like we can't hold ourselves upright any more.
Tonight, as I read with Drew, Tucker wrote the following "story":
When I grow up I will be an inventor and create something that will bring people from heaven, especially Connor.
Then he added in that after he finished college he would create a potion that he can give the dog so that the dog can live forever.
However, for the record, he is still okay with me dying when he is 85 (and I am 121). I imagine I will need something more than a metaphorical gait trainer by then...2094...