Thursday, April 5, 2012
Bigger Picture Moment: Mia, from Justin's Perspective
He tells me about it.
He walks Mia into her elementary school and down the hall to her kindergarten class. There are not many parents walking their kids all the way into school this late in the year. Mostly, the tiled halls are filled with children threading around corners and dashing behind friends.
I imagine it: cool, morning light at their backs, father and daughter silhouetted in the glow. His hand reaches down to hers reaching up. Palms as touchpoints. Longer strides slowed to shorter. He glances sideways at her assurance. This is her turf. She knows it and is master of it.
At her hallway, she slows down. One hand steadies her backpack and the other tries to pull away from her daddy's grip. She is pulling into herself now -- condensing into a girl who needs no strong hand to guide her to the classroom. And she certainly doesn't need a hug or kiss. Once they arrive at the classroom door, she is all but self-enclosed. Still, Justin asks, in case she's decided to allow a bit of bestowed affection after all.
Okay, Mia, give me a hug, he says. It's half joke, half plea.
Her face curls up into a smile that won't be released. It's too embarrassing. Inside, there must be a gem of want -- a place that needs her daddy's hug before saying goodbye -- or the smile would be a true scowl. She would simply race away, into the room of friends who are surely watching to see some errant display of shameful love. But she stays, betraying the want while refusing to acknowledge it.
So he makes a concession. A trio of hand squeezes in exchange for a refused hug.
Squeeze. Squeeze. Squeeze.
I. Love. You.
She grips his hand and reciprocates the pattern, looking away the whole time. She will give nothing away. Her backpack is hitched up on one shoulder now, and one leg is over the threshold. She is here, but already gone.
Their hands release, but his eyes hold on. Locked on her as she darts away, hair flying back in her haste. He waits, watching for one last maybe.
Maybe she will look back.
Maybe she will flash a smile.
Maybe she will sign 'I Love You' with stretched out fingers.
But either way, all day he feels the squeezes of slender fingers on his hand. Memory-ghosting around his heart like a promise, of which she carries the mirror image.
I. Love. You.
We're seeing the Bigger Picture through simple moments -- moments that force us to stop and take notice of the ways our worlds are important, meaningful, and beautiful. Please join us here today! Grab the button, link up, and read a few others to encourage them as they walk this journey of intentional living.