Healing in a Baby’s Smile

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Last week, we started a new session of gymnastics. This means I wrote yet another check and also that some new kids joined the class.


I like meeting new people, but those first classes are always just a little awkward. If everyone were new, it probably wouldn’t be, but some people are always known, while others are just entering the scene. I’m a pretty open, chatty person, typically, so I’m usually one of the ones trying to bridge that gap.


Anyhow, a new little girl joined our group and her mom happened to stand next to me in the hall as we watched our daughters warm up.


In her arms, she held one of the calmest, most placid babies I’ve ever seen. His brown eyes held mine steadily and he exuded a steady tranquility that, frankly, isn’t present in most babies in the six-month range. This wasn’t a peaceful sleeping newborn– he was very much alert and awake. But so, so calm and relaxed.


I chatted with the mom. She told me about how he’d been a surprise and had rocked their worlds– they had planned on stopping with their two girls. But a gentle smile brightened her eyes as she revealed, “He’s an amazing baby, though. So easy. So happy.”


He did, indeed, appear to be so. When I shot a dimpled grin his way, he rewarded me with a beaming gummy smile. When I waved at him, he kicked busy little feet.


We chatted on and realized that our sons had the same name. Same spelling, same everything. While it seems silly, we found kinship in that and, of course, appreciated one another’s good taste.


Her little A. was a delightful baby boy in every way. He was calm no matter what happened, but he seemed particularly responsive to me. I was so tickled by him.


Shortly before parting ways, I asked her, “Now, how old is he again? Did you say?”


“Close to six months,” she smiled, “he was born on September 20th.”


September 20th. The day our fourth baby had been due.


Sweet baby A. met my gaze. He just looked at me. He blinked, slowly, and smiled.


And my heart sighed a healing breath.

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