The day dawns bright and fair. I tip-toe so as not to wake my sleeping boy, though the bedroom door squeaks so loudly I don’t know how he sleeps on. He’s laying asleep on the couch, covered in an afghan made with these two hands and my heart skips a beat, the love so intense, the joy so full at seeing him, here, in our home. The dog is happy to see him again, too. She is not an exuberant dog, but the signs are unmistakable. She lit up when her boy came in the door. She snuggles with him on the couch, so happy to have her boy with us.

I wonder if she hopes to go away with him when he leaves.

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My boy

At least this time, he needs a ride to the airport.  This time he won’t be able to just grab his bags and leave without a warning as he is wont to do. This time my heart isn’t in my throat every day, all day, as I’m at work, wondering if he will be there when I get home. He’s different, my boy. Hilariously funny, but his humor is dry, and sparing, like his words. Few, his words, he drops them like gold, which I eagerly gather and hold to my heart.

I’ve seen glimpses of him everywhere for months now. Each time my heart skips a beat as I see his walk, his shape, someone wearing his “uniform”. And each time I’ve been disappointed to realize it isn’t him, but here he is, and I’ve forgotten to thank God for this delight.  I pray St. Philaret’s prayer, “…”I do not know what to beg of Thee…to ask for either a cross or for consolation.” Ah, my soul, He has provided consolation to me and I am so, so thankful.

Emoting is not my thing, but I could probably write songs about my love for my son, but who would sing them? Who would want to hear them? I love that face.  I love that walk, honed in years of marching band. I love (and hate) his silence. I love how he watches TV (when he watches it) as he selects the most interesting things. I love that he reads books that are deep, interesting, weighty things. I love that he quietly, and without ever saying a word, has been supporting children through Compassion for years. I love how diligently (and quietly) he goes on seeking work, interviewing here and there and everywhere, seeking possibilities that others might ignore. I love how he pushed himself through high school, determined to be the “good child” and then pushed himself through college, earning a prestigious degree all on his own. What a marvel of independence he is. He seems to know no fear.

Not a day goes by when I don’t think of my children, when my heart doesn’t ache to see them, when I’m not bursting with pride over them. To have one here makes my heart sing.

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