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?”
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.