Driving home from the cemetery this afternoon, Kim and I passed by a father holding hands with the cutest little toddler. The child was over dressed in a snow suit and was walking, occasionally stopping to tip his whole body back in the way that children do to look up at a parent. The father stopped each time the young one stopped to look back at his child.
How often have you been with your child and not been with them. You’ve taken the time to be at a kid’s soccer game but been on your cell phone. You’ve left work to pick your kid up from school but your mind isn’t there on your son or daughter and the day they’ve just had at school – your mind is already back at your desk on the next thing you have to do.
Kim and I had just come from picking out a cemetery plot for Elena as we passed this father and child. She asked if it made me sad. I said no. No, it doesn’t make me sad to see a parent engaged in his child’s life who is really enjoying a moment with them. I love that. All children deserve our full attention. She nodded. She isn’t saddened by other children either.
I think that I will be saddened later when I see children who are the age that Elena will never get to be. What happens in nine years when she would have been learning to drive or in eleven when she would have graduated from high school.
In the past twenty-four hours Kim and I have picked out a casket and a cemetery plot for a six year old. Seeing other parents who are present for their children is one of the things that brings us joy because we know that feeling.