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Brookes' Mindset Journey - Chapter 3: Good Intentions

Brookes stared at his phone as he bumped along on the bus ride home. He was only supposed to use it in times of emergency, but he wasn’t sure he could last the agonizing 30-minute ride without telling someone…anyone his news. Jessie was out sick again today, and Brookes had barely made it to the bus lot, even without seeking friends or teammates to tell. His mom wouldn’t be home for another hour and a half, and he already felt like he was going to burst. He was never good at containing his excitement, and it had honestly gotten him into some trouble over the years. Ah, screw it, this was an emergency after all; he was going to die if he didn’t tell someone!


“Brookes, dear! What’s wrong?”

The worry in his mom’s voice shook some of the ecstasy from his head. It took only a moment to calm her, but some of the thrill of telling his news was gone. Brookes mentally chastised himself. He knew she probably had to step out of a meeting, or something of the sort, to take his call. But as he filled her in, her excitement became palpable and reignited his own. As he hung up the phone, Brookes couldn’t help but grin. Man, he loved his mom. He wanted nothing more than to do something great for her. His homework load was manageable…so that gave him plenty of time to whip up a surprise dinner before she arrived. Hmm, at this point mac and cheese with hotdogs was the most impressive dish he could think of. It would have to do. After all, it’s the thought that counts.


The mac and cheese was getting quite sticky by the time Brookes heard his mom pull into the garage. She was a bit later than expected and he frantically stirred in a futile attempt to keep the cheese fresh. This wasn’t going how he wanted it to! But the thought of failure disappeared when his mom walked around the corner, holding two take-out bags from his favorite restaurant. They stared at each other for a moment before bursting into shared laughter. His mom offered to eat Brookes’ thoughtfully prepared dinner, but he was already packaging it up for the fridge. It would serve as a decent meal tomorrow, but tonight…tonight his mom won!


“So, have you told your sister yet?”

Brookes studied the floor. He really wanted to. They had been so close, but since Stevie left for college a few months ago, things just weren’t the same. Sure, they had talked here and there, but she always seemed busy; like her mind was anywhere but on him. He missed her so much and it had taken far longer than Brookes cared to admit to get used to his new morning routine without her. The previous two years had been the best of his life and nothing beat the time they shared each morning when Stevie drove them both to school. Transitioning back to the bus was difficult, but seeing Jessie each morning made it sting just a little less. Maybe he would text his sister after he finished his homework for the night…


Brookes laid in bed with a smile on his face. Now that was a good day. He replayed the events in his head, strangely feeling his heart beat faster as he remembered seeing his name on the Varsity roster. Even his dinner surprise had gone better than anticipated, especially after he botched the mac and cheese! However, there was one thing weighing on his shoulders. Stevie hadn’t texted him back. His mom had reassured him that she was probably preoccupied with her studies. And he only texted that he had good news to share; not that he actually made Varsity. Brookes convinced himself that if he had told her the whole truth, she would have immediately called him to chat about it. At least he hoped as much. Thankfully he had his mom. He didn’t know what he’d do if she left him too.

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