Safe for now
I stepped out of a meeting and saw I’d missed a call from my fiancee.
“Our son is fine,” his voicemail informed me without preface.
In the moment before he continued speaking, my breath caught in my throat as I imagined a million different terrifying scenarios.
Even after I’d heard the one that actually played out, even understanding our son was fine, I was hopelessly out of the swing of things the rest of the afternoon. My every thought was punctuated by the question, “What if?”
What if it had been something more serious?
What if our son had been hurt? What if one (or some) of his friends had been?
What if the voicemail had instead begun, “Deb, something terrible happened”?
When I drove up to the school and saw with my own eyes the aftermath of today’s incident, it seemed very small and very big all at once. And when I saw my little boy, I found myself especially pleased with his traditional running hug attack.
In this world, all was well. But enveloped in my son’s hug, ruffling his hair as he asked if it was donut day, glimpses of the could-have-been flashed through my mind.
I’m glad the could-have-been was not, not today. I’m glad my son is safe for now. I still wish I could give him perfect safety, but at the moment I am glad for the moment’s safety.
No matter how tired and beat I am after a rough couple of weeks, any day is good that winds down beginning with my son’s tackle hugs.