As If

I walked down the driveway towards my car and gave my neighbors a friendly wave. Their kids were running through their lawn sprinkler, shrieking with delight at the spray of cold water. I felt that ache I am growing accustomed to every other weekend, that ache of missing my own kids.

“Miss Dana! I getting wet!” yelled two-year-old Anthony.

“Yes you are!” I giggled in reply.

“Miss Dana?” asked Emilio from his front porch. “Where are Maddie and Katie? Are they with their dad?”

Their dad.

It stops me in my tracks every time.

Their dad. As if he is some removed person, unconnected and unrelated to me. As if he is theirs and not mine at all. As if he doesn’t really exist in this world we’ve created – in this neighborhood, on this block, in this new house. As if he is a foreigner, a stranger.

As if him and I are strangers.

I blinked and caught my breath.

“Yes, they’re with their dad. They’ll be home Sunday,” I answered with a smile.


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8 thoughts on “As If

  1. When you said there were two words you couldn’t get used to, I thought it would be “Miss Dana.” I can’t seem to get used to Miss Stacey, which is what the neighborhood kids call me. (Better than Isabelle’s mom, but I’d prefer “Stacey.” However, that’s not how things are done around here.)
    I’m sure they’ll come to see Jerome more often and will start referring to him as such, instead of “their dad.”

  2. Do you sometimes wonder how many new things we need to “get used to” at our age (I know you are younger than me, but still!!!?) It is amazing, though, how we humans adjust and readjust to our “new normal.” Hugs to you from me while you adjust and eventually….thrive again. xoxo

  3. What a powerful moment. The tone you create in the build up to “their dad” adds to the punch of your reflection after you hear the words. What resonates as I leave the post is all that is unsaid. May this get easier.

  4. Oh, Dana, this piece resonates with emotion and, as Amanda says, with all that is unsaid. My heart goes out to you and your family as you navigate this new terrain.

  5. There are so many of us who feel a part of each other’s lives through the time we’ve spent together at SOL. Hoping that things get easier as time goes on. Hugs and love across the miles!

  6. Oh Dana. I wish I had the right words for what I want to say, but there is much in my heart that I would like to convey. I don’t know the story- most of us here don’t- but I know that you are an amazing person- a devoted mom, a passionate educator, a caring soul. I also know you are brave and resilient. I’ve been walking through my own set of storms and I’ve been so appreciative of the people around me who have thrown me a life preserver when I needed it. I’m hoping you have many real-life angels helping you navigate the road where life has taken you. Sending you hugs.

  7. Dana, I don’t have the words to tell you how sorry I am for whatever you’re going through. I know we’re strangers but I’m that Philippine flag you see on your blog stats. I hope things get better. 😦

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