The one he gave away


I “met” Tara online in the fall of 2006 when both of us joined an online community group for first-time moms with babies due in June 2007. At the time we lived hours away from each other (me in Beaufort, S.C., and she in Harrisburg, PA), but we bonded over pregnancy particulars, the fact that we both were Penn State alums and, eventually, the coincidence that our babies were born on the same day - June 2, 2007.

As fate would have it, two years later I moved to Harrisburg, and though it took about nine months to get together in person, we finally did. Last week the boys and I met Tara and her daughter, Grace, at City Island here in Harrisburg to explore a little bit and catch up.

We said our hellos and set off with Evan and Grace in strollers and Kostyn walking alongside (and darting ahead, and lingering behind, and stopping to pick up rocks and smoosh bugs with his fingers...). We’d gone about 50 yards when Kostyn raced from the road onto the grass because he’d spotted a dandelion. Whenever we go for walks around the neighborhood he picks a dandelion, or some other weed nobody but a toddler notices, and proudly gives me the bloom. It warms my heart.

So I stood there waiting for my half-smooshed yellow dandelion head, prepared to add it to the other dried dandelion heads cluttering the stroller’s cup holder. (I had a passing thought not too long ago to make this growing collection into potpourri but realized that besides the sentimental value, it probably wouldn’t be all that attractive - or fragrant - to have a bowl of rotting dandelions on a table in my living room.)

But he ran right past me and, with a huge smile on his face, presented the yellow flower to Tara.

It always amazes me that this kid, a product of two very shy parents, isn’t all that shy himself. He doesn’t have the socialization outlets that a regular day-care or a busier, more social mom would give him. So I love it when he extends himself like this toward a friendly stranger like Tara.

I didn’t get the dandelion this time. But I still got something to warm my heart.

4 comments:

Sheila said...

Is that K-man a charmer or what...... Love this story!

Heather said...

Dylan is extremely sociable too, also considering her daddy and I are primarily her social outlet. She is more a hugger than flower sharer.... but it amazes me!

Tara @ Feels like home said...

As soon as I saw the title, I knew what this was going to be about. :) It totally warmed my heart, too.

And I'm crying about it right now. Let's blame PMS.

Every. single. day. this week, Grace has said, "Let's go see Kostyn. Mah friend, Kostyn. He walks, and I sit in my stroller. Go see Kostyn." It's about the cutest thing ever. I love it.

Lyn said...

I, too, love it when Leah does something that neither of us ever would, it makes me so proud and excited to get to know this little person who is very much her own! So glad you connected with your friend! (who from her picture I think kind of looks a little like me when my hair was long!)