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Archive for July 22nd, 2014

Sometimes … the past comes back to haunt, and once in a while … it comes back to soothe and reassure.

It was a sunny, warm spring day. Hubby and I had packed our modern picnic lunch (also known as fast food, picked up en route to the park), and were heading to a local park with our 20’ish month old daughter.

We drove until we found a park that we had not been to before (and I do not remember ever returning to again). The park was large, with a soccer field and baseball diamond towards the back. Parking was at the front, near the street. Also, towards the front was a small playground area with swings, and a sandbox. And near the playground were just a few picnic tables and benches.

Our daughter was very eager to get to the sandbox … we were very eager to eat our fast food picnic lunch, before the hot and crisp fries became cold and flopsy. And so, she played, and we ate … all of us enjoying the respite that a park provides.

And then, there she was …

A little girl had arrived at the sandbox, seemingly out of nowhere. She was a blond pre-schooler, who seemed older than her years. As quickly as she appeared, she befriended our daughter, and the two of them played, in the sandbox and on the swings, as though they had known each other all of their lives.

As we enjoyed watching their play with each other, we finally realized that this delightful little girl did not seem to have an adult with her. When we asked her who she was there with she pointed to the baseball game, happening towards the back of the park, and said, “they’re over there.” Although we thought it odd for her parents to allow her to be so far from them, at such a young age, we felt we had no alternative, but to believe her.

The two girls sat on the swings, and we responded to their requests to push them. As hubby and I pushed, we marveled at how the two looked so similarly, they could be sisters. Their blond hair swaying in the breeze, and their blue eyes shining with delight, their contagious giggles. Why, they could be … sisters …

And it hit us both … they could be sisters. They looked so much alike, their age difference … why that delightful little girl could be the same age as our first baby, who had never made it to live with us.

It had happened over three years before. At four months into our first pregnancy … the baby, our first baby, died (this wasn’t to be our first such loss, as over the years it was to happen four more times). We never knew the gender of that child, but we had named it, to provide for ourselves some bit of identity. We had decided on the name Alison, because it could be a boy, or a girl’s name. The name is an old one, meaning noble or truth.

The two girls continued to play happily, until it was time for us to leave.

Then we asked the little girl her name … and she smiled at us, and replied, “Alison.”

 

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