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Always. And Forever.

He is sad, he says. Sad because we cannot marry. Not ever.

And I nod. Because it’s true.

Still his backyard confession pours out, “but I love you so much, mommy.”

And my smile works its way from the depths.

“It’s just…” he says.”It’s just I don’t think I could ever marry anyone else.”

I grin from my lawn chair. He spins his sister’s broken umbrella with one hand, then tosses it. Words fall from my lips, but he isn’t listening. “Because if I can’t marry you,” he breaks in, “I just want to be a little boy forever.”

His face is asking my permission. And my heart is answering what he doesn’t know. Cannot know. Could not conceive.

That.

That he’ll always be my little boy.

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