By Aneka Bailey
That morning started like any other Saturday morning. The soft, gentle rays of the sun kissed Mia’s eyes as she rolled out of her deep slumber. Groggily, she stretched and gazed at her surroundings. The sheer white curtains danced swiftly as the sweet spring breeze blew softly through the cracked window. A wide smile spread across her plump cheeks. It was Saturday and according to Mia, Saturday was the best day of the week; aside from snow days and Christmas.
Mia’s tiny toes touched the stool beside her bed as she eased her way from under the covers. She slid into her white, plush bunny slippers, which were her favorite because the ears flopped as she walked. Her little legs fluttered as she ran to the bathroom. Her chubby, dimpled fingers flipped the light switch illuminating her deep brown skin and smooth, bald head.
“I am strong. I am beautiful. I am wise!” She declared to her reflection with determination. A little twinkle in her eye confirming her belief in those very words. With a satisfied nod, she grabbed her toothbrush splattering toothpaste on the bristles, countertop, and a little on herself.
“Whoops!” She giggled as she sat the brush down and used toilet paper inevitably smearing blue goop all over. She did her best to clean up, which was as good as a four year old could, and started brushing her teeth once her job felt done.
With her first task done, she crept out of the bathroom to her parents room. As she looked through the crack, she saw her parents slumbering bodies. As she pushed the door, her stomach let out a low rumble. A little gasp escaped her lips as she silently dashed away towards the kitchen. Today, she’d have to make herself breakfast.
She grabbed a kitchen chair and dragged it across the wooden floor. Once at the cupboard, Mia climbed into the chair and reached for her favorite box of cereal, then a plastic bowl. She carefully balanced herself every step of the way. The cereal clinked in the bowl as she poured, while bits fell over the side and clambered to the floor. With tentative steps around the cereal, she managed to get the milk out of the fridge to fill her bowl. Despite the weight of the container, she was determined to be as independent as possible. After all, she knew she was strong and capable.
Splashes of milk spilled onto the counter and floor as Mia filled her bowl to the brim. Her eyes took in the mess before she grabbed mounds of paper towels. Once each of the item absorbed as much as it could, she discarded them in the trashcan not noticing the trails that followed behind like rain drops.
‘Maybe leaving more over the puddle will help.’ Mia thought to herself as she looked back at what remained. She placed more on the puddles and left them for later.
Mia, who was now settled in her spot at the counter, clicked on the tv remote tuning into her favorite cartoons. She munched and kicked her legs animatedly as music filled the room. The ears on her bunny slippers flopped with every swing.
“Hey, my little brave girl.” Her father greeted her. “You should get ready for the doctor soon, kiddo.”
He kissed the top of her bald head and looked at her lovingly. That was when she remembered, today was an exceptionally special day. The best Saturday of all Saturday’s, because it was her last day of chemo. A special Saturday indeed.