Sara’s Smile

“Life is what you make it”, she said.
He could hear her now.  She was always giving him advice on how to live more positively and therefore more happily.  Sara-isms, he called them.
The thought of this made him smile and as he did so, he could hear her saying, “Did you know that when you smile your body releases endorphins that will help your mood?  So smile even when you don’t want to and things will seem a lot better.”
“Be grateful for what you have,” she said.  And he was – grateful for her, for their new baby daughter and grateful for the opportunities that he had been provided at work.  So why did he have this niggling feeling that something just wasn’t right?
As he pulled into his driveway, he just couldn’t shake the feeling.  Opening the front door, he thought about how he would try to explain it to Sara and how she would make him laugh with one of her Sara-isms.
“All you have is here and now,” she would say, “Don’t worry about what hasn’t happened.”
“Sara, I’m home.”
Nothing. Maybe she was sleeping.  She had been up with the baby quite a few times last night and she was probably tired.
He walked down the hall to their bedroom. His wife was slumped in the rocking chair where she sometimes nursed the baby.  Her nightgown was stained with breast milk, her hair hung limply around her face and her red-rimmed eyes stared straight ahead.  As she saw him in the doorway, fresh tears started to roll down her cheeks.
“I can’t do this,” she sobbed. “I am not a good mother.”
He crossed the room and scooped her up out of the chair.  Falling onto their bed, he rocked her like a baby while she wept, uncontrollably.  He struggled to find the words to comfort her but all that came to mind were Sara-isms.
“Well, why not,” he thought.
“A very wise woman once told me,” he started, “that God wouldn’t give us more than we could handle.”
She smiled beneath her tears as she recognized her own words and at that moment he was so grateful for endorphins and Sara-isms.
This week’s Red Writing Hood prompt comes from Carrie of Views from Nature.
Flash Fiction can be fun and a real challenge. This week focus on the words and the strength of each to contribute to your story. Write a 300 word piece using the following word for inspiration: LIFE.

8 thoughts on “Sara’s Smile

  1. I was getting set for a tragic ending to your story, and I'm so glad it wasn't. I'm sure this couple will face other bumps in the road, but it's good they have one another as they deal with them.

  2. Oh, such a sweet tale! I love how you set it up. Like the others, I was expecting a tragic ending, but instead, you gave us a twist. The woman who is usually so happy and positive finally has a moment, and then because she's always so happy and positive, her husband is able to lift her up based on what he's learned from her. I loved both characters…they're both surprisingly “real” feeling. Great job! Stopping by from TRDC.

  3. I am bawling like a baby now. This was simply beautiful and touching. I love how he was there for her when she fell apart-and how he was able to use her wisdom to lift her up. Love it, just love it!

  4. I was worried that the beginning was so cheerful, and I felt that doubt creep in as he did. I love how you had him support her with her own words; it's so true in relationships that they are the strongest when the participants take turns supporting each other when the other needs it.

  5. I was so afraid something had happened to her. I have a friend who had a stroke when she was alone with her newborn – she survived and is fine, but the scene when her husband discovered her was not good.

    I love the give and take of their relationship in your story.

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