It’s Payback Time

The Friday Fictioneers prompt has come again, so here’s my offering. Many thanks for Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for faithfully carrying on as leader, mentor, moderator of our group. If you’d like to participate in this weekly storytelling marathon, check out her blog for more details. This week our thanks also goes to Sarah Potter for the prompt photo.

My story was inspired by some testimonies I’ve read from children who made it to the big times in their particular fields and wanted to return the love and support they’d received from their parents.

PHOTO © Sarah Potter

Payback Time

Dad came whenever he could. On his feet all day, came home exhausted, yet after supper he’d get me to the game and cheer from the stands. We barely managed on his salary — but my equipment was a priority.

One day I promised, “When I make the League, Dad, you’re outta that factory.”

He smiled. “I’m looking forward to that day.”

I gave the game all I had. For him. For his faith in me. When I signed my first contract I said, “Toss them work shoes, Dad. It’s payback time.”

He and mom are holidaying in Phoenix right now.

83 thoughts on “It’s Payback Time

    1. That’s not surprising. 🙂 But it’s very interesting, Bjorn, that you lived there. For how long?

      I read a funny story on Goodreads a few days ago that made me think of you. A writer said that he had a character in his book named Ken — and he decided to change the fellow’s name to Patrick. And he had another character he ‘d named Roger, but decided to change his name to Bjorn. So he did a “search and replace” for both names.
      Later, editing his book, he came across the sentence: We spent the afternoon listening to Patrickny Bjorns album, “The Gambler.” Whoops! 🙂


    1. Thank you. I hope, too, that they will. Don’t expect much until after they’re 25, though. 🙂
      When I read stories like this, I wish I’d been a more self-sacrificing, encouraging parent — not for any payback but because of the strong bond they enjoyed all the child’s growing up years and still do. I had a lot of issues from childhood and my poor daughter had to put up with a lot while I was trying to work them out.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I think the bonds that were forged in childhood will hold. I just read about a successful author who all through his life wrote his mother a nice long letter once a week, bless his dear heart. 🙂
      thanks for your comment; you are right about the value of visits.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It won’t hold true every time. As you say, Alas! Circumstances (and spouses) may prohibit. But I’ve worked in a few old folks’ residences—enough to observe that generally “What goes around comes around.” When parents were there with love and encouragement for their children, the children will usually make time for, and where necessary will provide for, the parents.
      Thanks for your comment.


    1. Having that extra goal made him discipline himself and try harder to succeed, where so many athletes get into substance abuse and what not.

      I read one story where the son really wanted a fleecy winter jacket. The family was dirt poor, there was no hope, but somehow his Dad managed to skrimp and save enough to get it for him for Christmas. When Son signed his first contract he went home and handed his dad the first check — to pay him for that long ago Christmas present. A lot of love went into those two gifts.


    1. When older kids see their parents struggling to make ends meet, and sense their folks are making sacrifices on their behalf, it touches their hearts. The trouble is, too many parents nowadays don’t communicate and involve their children in a positive way in the day-to-day affairs of the family. They just fork over the cash. As one saying on a T-shirt: “My kids think I’m an ATM machine.”

      Thanks for your comment, Plaridel.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Hi Christine! This is my first time on your blog and I already love your writing! This is an endearing tale of love and gratitude. I´m sure the parents are a happy, contented lot. Loved your take on the prompt. Keep writing and I will be visiting for more such gems. Love and Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I’m sure parents, who are often dirt poor all their lives in cases like this, are always happy to see their children make it. Most parents expect to sacrifice and don’t look for payback, but it’s nice when it comes.

      This story seems to have been really well liked — I’ll have to write a few more. 🙂


    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and glad I could touch the “grateful” nerve. Seems to be one that’s underdeveloped in the “It’s all about ME” generation.

      I wish, too, I’d had more insights back then. Many regrets. I came out of a crazy situation and was damaged by Dad’s constant verbal abuse. I was married at 17 and it took ten years til I quit having nightmares about him exploding in anger at me. I thought he hated me, but as I got older I realized this wasn’t so.

      In later years I saw his perspective a little clearer, how he did work (when he wasn’t sick with ulcers) and how frustrated he must have been that Mom’s income was our mainstay. (Dad was a carpenter and back then it meant “out of work all winter.”) But children have to be taught gratitude as well as many other things, and I was pretty much left to raise myself. I regret missing out on a lot of important lessons that the young man in my story would have picked up. Above all, he knew his Dad loved him.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. This athlete may be as tempted as any other and he may get some “status symbol” stuff, but his parents gave him a sense of “family looking out for each other” that will stabilize him when others are “selfing out” — if I may be allowed to make up a new term. Thanks for your comment.


      1. I’ll have to submit “selfing out” to Merriam-Webster’s newest update. I’m sure they already have pigging out and copping out and such. Maybe someday we’ll get teens who are finally selfied-out? 🙂


I'd like to hear your thoughts on this. Please leave a comment.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.