The focus was on just me and him. This was the day he would verbally commit to The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. You can tell by the sky blue ‘NC’ emblem on his sports hat surrounded by a navy color that matched my turtleneck. It was still winter. My shoulders are surrounded by my cascading wavy hair that reaches down to my waist where you can see his arm is wrapped around me and holding my stomach. He has to lean in, and I have to lean back; my right arm outstretched across my lap to allow room for a little one who’s not present and whose presence we would never know. I’m glowing; you can see it in my smile. He’s proud, and his grin is that of which he accepts his responsibility and is ready to serve a greater purpose than that of his own. The blurred family behind us carry on with their delighted conversation unaware of the inevitable emotional rollercoaster that we would eventually experience, although they could never understand.
…And Never Did.
This was one of the early days in May when I took him to Mt. Trashmore to get out of the house. The sun shines brightly on him; he is focused on the swing. It always squeaked. He was only three here, and he was looking more and more like his daddy, except he has my eyes. You can’t tell from the picture because he isn’t looking at the camera, but they’re there. He’s wearing the Iron Man outfit his cousin grew out of and those dinosaur shoes he just had to have but is growing out of quickly. Behind him, you can see a grassy hill full of children running up and down, fathers helping fly kites for their kids, a group of teenagers probably up to no good, a family having a picnic, and some bad little boy trying to chase the ducks by the pond. They are all oblivious to my little boy, but he is the only one that holds my attention.