I can barely stand on my own on ice. So the idea that I would try to catch someone else is pretty ridiculous but that’s exactly what happened this morning.
I was waiting for the bus when a woman with baby (on a cell phone) came up and stood next to me. We exchanged pleasantries and watched the 34 bus approach.
As soon as we stepped off the curb, my cane slid forward. Somehow I regained my footing. Then, out of the corner of my eye, the saw the woman looking unstable. Her baby was nearly horizontal.
I reached back and grabbed the little one. I didn’t even think about the fact that she wasn’t mine or that I could’ve fallen or pulled my back. The baby’s big eyes glanced at me from underneath her ivory hat with a bow on it and she smiled. Her two tiny teeth glistened. I knew I’d reacted the right way.
“Thank you,” said the Mother “You gotta be careful out here.”
I could barely hear her. The infant’s small hands, little feet and chubby cheeks captivated me. I could’ve held that baby all day. But, when we got to the Broad Street, it was time for the pair to get off. The infant returned to her Mom.
For a moment, I became emotional thinking about my own void; the lack of a child of my own. Then, as the baby waived goodbye, I smiled. I was relieved that I was willing to sacrifice myself to protect a child from any harm, even if for just one day.
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