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Friday Nights

Every Friday night I tell my kids a story. I’ve been doing it for years. I don’t remember how it even started, but I guess it’s sort of become a family tradition. I probably shouldn’t say this, but most Friday nights a little part of me is hoping they don’t remember so I don’t have to rack my brain trying to think of another story. But they pretty much never forget anymore.

“Story time! Story time!” they’ll chant. Followed by, “Did you think of a story, daddy?”

That’s when I’ll usually lay there and close my eyes and try to think of something from my life I haven’t already told them before. Something age appropriate, of course.

In the early years it was what you might expect. Lots of stories about my most embarrassing moments. But now as they’ve gotten older, it’s getting harder and harder to satisfy them, especially the older one who remembers everything.

But on this New Year’s Eve Friday, I’m going to finally tell them the story they’ve been waiting for, the one I’ve been promising for years. The long story, they refer to it.

“Tell us the long story!” they would say anytime it took me a while to come up with one. But I always said I’d tell them when they were older.

New Year’s Eve 2021, I’d said.

They’ve been counting down the days since last week. It’s actually perfect timing, because tonight my oldest asked me something he’d never thought to ask me before.

“Daddy, how come grandma and grandpa’s last name is different from ours?”

Then I looked at my wife and we couldn’t help but smile.