We are huge fans of indoor play parks, my Emmeline and I. We usually hit three to four a week.
Last week I actually ran into someone I knew. This never happens because I am the Old Grandma Moses of mothering, and allllll the moms I know have kids ages ten and up.
Anyway, one teacher from our kids' school was there with her daughter. We had become friends before she got pregnant and when baby was born they were over-the-top happy. I smiled & gave her a big box of (slightly used) baby items (because I would never need them again, hahaha).
After that, for her more babies did not come. They tried, and tried, and tried. Tried everything and then some. Still, nothing. I remember we huddled under the school breezeway one rainy, blowy day during recess and she spilled her story to me.
She looked good, when I saw her, slender and put-together. Her daughter looked good, too, enjoying the balance beam. She was startled to see me -- and more so when she saw Emmeline. "Wait. You had another baby." Not so much a question as just a blurt. I introduced Emmeline and saw emotion in my old friend's eyes. "We're thinking of adopting, actually. We're happy with one but another would be so nice." I told her that was great and mentioned how darling her daughter was. "You know I would love to have more. I just can't seem to."
And with that our kids ran in different directions and we stopped talking. Emmeline was ready to go, and I said goodbye to my friend while struggling to tie Emmeline's shoes. It was not a very personal parting.
I pray I always remember what a gift my children are. Let me remember the magical moment when they were each born, and how the time continuum stopped as I memorized each tiny face and fell so, so deeply, completely, and forever in love.
These children of ours are gifts. Not everyone is lucky enough to be given them.
Let me remember.