Before she was Born

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It was a year before you were born my sweet darling child. Your father, the busy man we all know him to be had come back for a week, the longest he’d ever been away from his life. Impulsive as he was, after lunch he dragged me for a walk. Ardent that he would not let me miss the wonder and joy of walking in the December afternoon, where the sunlight’s warmth mixed into the cold winter breeze. Though not my way of living life, my adamant nature was no match for his zeal and fervour.

It had only been a year since we were married and with your father away all the time, there were many things we never talked about. But the things left unsaid never piled up on us. There was his way, the way we just looked into each other’s eyes and most of our questions were resolved.

So, there we were, walking in the December afternoon, dancing and singing merrily. Laughing like little children. His zeal, his love and his optimism made him a child. That’s why everyone gravitated to him. Because he made them children as well. I know that’s why I did.

We went on like that for hours. People stared at us and children came and played with us. Maybe because they saw us as even bigger kids. And after those hours ended, we both sat down on a park bench a top a small hill that overlooked the entire vicinity of the park.

A lot of the things that were unspoken amongst us required no talking. Any unsolved issues were suddenly, solved. Just like that. We didn’t need to talk. We just needed to look at each other. We just sat and looked ahead and around, the world and all of its wonders, at times staring at each other. Even though he never realised it, I always knew when he staring at me when he thought I wasn’t looking. I always caught it from the corner of my eye and when I did turn my face, he would turn his face away, acting as though he was gazing in my direction. Red and embarrassed. Even though he knew I would catch him, he never stopped.

After our little game was done, we saw another little child walk in front of us. She was such a cute little girl, so small, her hair in a ponytail, wearing this adorable dress with a jacket on top of it and running around with a red rubber ball. I couldn’t help but keep on staring at her and smile incessantly like, a lot like the time when I saw you for the first time. She could barely speak properly so she kept on making these cute little sounds. Like gogo, ga, to show excitement. Same as you used to make.

As soon as she went out of the sight, your father’s impulse found its way to me. “I want one,” I told him. It took me a second to turn my head towards him, it hadn’t struck me at that very instant what I had just asked, and I started fearing his response. It also hadn’t struck me that your dad could also seize the day quite easily.

I looked at him and he had his usual quizzical expression. “Just one? I was thinking maybe a whole bunch!”

At that time, my eyes swelled up like pearls and I glowed. I couldn’t believe what I had just heard. “Really?” I asked.

“Yeah. Yeah,” he responded with his usual zest and energy. “I was thinking like the Von Trapp family. Minus the Nazism”, he finished.

Somewhere in my heart, I couldn’t believe what I had just heard. Neither could I believe that I had asked your father that out of impulse.

We were both blushing a bit, red, almost like tomatoes but we didn’t really care. We were happy. We were on the second moon of Endor happy.

So much so that he grabbed my waist and kissed me. Everybody stared at us. We didn’t really care. I blushed even more and smiled like an idiot. He moved but I stayed frozen in my spot, staring at him, with eyes as wide and big as pearls.

“Come on,” he said, and knowing I wouldn’t budge, he ran towards me and literally swept me off my feet. He held me in his arms and ran all the wat home.

That was when I realised that your father had somehow, always been a father, even without a child. Without you. And three months later, we conceived you. Nine months after that, a year after the park, you were born. Your father finally became a father with a child.

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