The Fall

Sometimes I fall.

It’s a mystery to my children. They always want to know why.

“What happened Mum?” my son asks. “Did you trip over something?”

“I don’t know,” I reply.

He gives me that strange look of his that he’s been practicing since he was a toddler. I find it amusing so I smile and he retorts “It’s no laughing matter Mum.”

I try to display a serious tone and reply “No, of course it isn’t,” and because I daren’t look him in the eyes ; I look down bashfully.

My daughter is preoccupied with the state of my health.

“Did you feel dizzy Mum?”

“I don’t think so dear”

“Don’t you remember?”

“Not really; I was just walking normally and then… I wasn’t, I was laid out on the carpet.”

Then my son turns to my daughter and they exchange glances and suddenly I know exactly what’s coming.

They have this theory that explains it all. To them anyway.

My dear late husband was quick and sure. He knew what he wanted and destroyed any obstacles that might impede his progress.

I had to continually try and keep up with him and when he left the house it was as if he was in a hurry to get back. He strode out at a dashing pace; determined to get where he was headed to as quickly as possible, and I was left trotting a few paces behind, trying, but rarely succeeding, to catch up.

My children often saw me continually off balance, and always about to fall but I rarely did. Well maybe once or twice. I suppress another smile.

So they think I fall because I continue, out of habit, to walk without measuring my stride, or paying attention to my gait.

“You must slow down Mum,” my son says and I nod. It’s no use contradicting him.

“Let’s make an appointment with your GP,” adds my daughter.

“Yes dear,” I answer.

Again, we’re back to where we always conclude.

Maybe one day they’ll understand that there are no reasons or remedies.

I just fall. (347 words)

This is the current Literary Lion challenge which is to write  a piece of fiction in around 400 words inspired by the word Fall.

I’ve just come back from holidays having seen three large waterfalls (Niagara Falls in Canada, Godafoss et Gullfoss in Iceland). I resisted the temptation to use a waterfall as a subject!

9 Replies to “The Fall : Literary Lion”

  1. So much personality conveyed by how the narrator and her late husband moved, and such sadness that she can’t quite communicate that with her children A beautiful piece, although I’ll admit that now I’m also tempted about what idea you had for waterfalls!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely story. I kept waiting to see if mum was hiding some condition from her children, but you wrapped it up nicely with your last line – “I just fall”. I also liked the comparison between the personalities of the mum and late father.

    Liked by 1 person

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