The Thirty Second Look

Today, like most days, the girls were standing in the front window of our home when I left to go to work. As I walk down the front steps I try to look back and wave and make funny faces at them so that they have a laugh in their minds as I leave them for the day.

What was different about today was that after I backed the car out onto the street and proceeded to drive forward along the street, I looked back at the front window and saw my two perfect little angels watching me as I drove away. I probably only had a thirty second glimpse of their faces as they watched me before the traffic swept me away. That thirty second glimpse of the look on their faces took me back some forty years in time to when I first started pre-school.

All the feelings of being “deserted” and “abandoned” flooded back into my mind. In that thirty seconds I remembered the feelings I experienced as I watched my mother back our little red Austin Mini down the driveway as I stood at the front door of the pre-school. In that thirty seconds I remembered the feelings of overwhelming sadness and loneliness that made my heart and every part of my being feel like it was being crushed.

Soon after my mother had left me at the pre-school I discovered that there was the biggest, most beautiful fluffy white Samoyed that was also there at the pre-school. I remember walking, feeling utterly alone, into the backyard of the pre-school building just so I could sit and hug that Samoyed. Shortly there after a little girl who had also been left at the pre-school came out to the backyard to see what I was doing. Next thing I knew I was inside the pre-school making funny faces and doing somersaults trying to make that little girl laugh (somethings never change).

On that one day more than forty some years ago I felt like my world had ended and then been resucitated. Isn’t it funny what you can live through in thirty seconds. Thinking about the look on my little one’s faces as I drove off to work this morning still makes my heart ache. Funny what a female can do to a man’s heart, isn’t it.


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