This Warm Path


Surrounded by a hurried environment, a new child and new career responsibilities, I promised myself to be mindful of the simple moments Baxter and I have shared recently.
I love my weekends when Baxter and I share our man-time. Amusing is his desire to walk (run) away from my support, only to quickly find out how I was of some use. Teetering and flailing head first into the ground like a jumbo jet’€™s emergency touchdown without landing gear. Luckily, our model of a baby boy is equipped with left and right air bags’€”namely those pudgy, protruding cheeks of his.

I realize falling is part of learning to walk and we are blessed with one tough monkey. You can easily observe the spills that hurt, thankfully they are rare. The crying is most sincere as indicated by red blotches that break out upon his flesh. If I were a dog, I would smell his distress. But most often, it’€™s caused from the shock of seeing his world flipped around without his permission.

But all this growing and striving and changing can really wear a little guy out. It’€™s hard to describe the emotions that flow through you as your baby-turned-toddler is under the spell of a bottle and succumbing to sleep. He reaches out and touches my face so gently (a pleasant change from the repeated smacks). Our eyes will lock. His hand will wander to his face. His leg that kept a steady beat falls still, resting splayed. His thumb will trace a warm path around his ear, twisting his thick paw to outline soft corners, then across his forehead and past his eye (now less focused). This moment is profoundly intimate in a way I’€™ve never experienced. I wish I could replay the images for you, but alas it would not whisper what I have heard.


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