Monday, October 21, 2013

The Big Ones

I saw them. Their faces, familiar, yet strange in changing hairstyles and growing maturity. It had been over 6 months since I'd last seen most of them. Their greetings, still cheerful, their enthusiasm, undimmed. They were my children, for a long, potent year. Their names lingered in the corners of my mind, faded like a near-forgotten tongue, overwritten with new, younger faces. My heart swelled to see them, yearning for more chances to strengthen our rapport. Their ebb and flow as they struggled to remember words they hadn't practiced. My arms opened instinctively for greeting hugs, forgetting that these were not my hugging wee bairns. Their juniors, confused at the now rare sight of a foreign face and the eager cries of their seniors. Oh, how I'd missed them, but now, my love for them burned only as strong as my love for their counterparts, my little ones (Do the mothers who claim multiplied, not divided, love have one thousand claims?). Their backs, fading quickly away, as they ignore the commotion by the door. Was it already nearly a school year since I was theirs? Yet, they are still mine. The others, already at new schools, scattered, nearly beyond reach. The others, preparing for new schools, leaving even fewer behind. Their smiles, grinning at a familiar face, eager at the promise of food. Their focus, as the long-awaited food rewards their patience. Their promises, likely hollow, of more chances to meet.

Oh, my dear, sweet ones. I'll see you again, very soon, but then, what? Will we meet again, as you transition to high school, then college? Will I yet be here, caring for each new year of tiny ones? Will I remember you as I raise my own babes, in foggy future years? Will you remember me? And yet, there is work at hand. There are little huggers with their now-familiar names. There are big little ones, almost off to middle school. This love, slower-growing as it may be, must multiply.

2 comments: