It's been a little while since I had to fight back tears in public, but it happened again today. I was at Mass and my friend, who I haven't seen since long before Thomas was born, and her family slipped into the pew in front of me. I love this friend - I've known her for years and years and we always laugh our heads off when we're together.
She has a Thomas of her own. Hers is four and the image of his father, just like my Thomas was. I didn't think it would bother me to see them but, like so many things that have surprised me since March 9th, it did.
I hate that it did, but it did.
I watched her little Tommas snuggle up to his father and I saw his father tuck him protectively into his side, and I felt my heart break for the millionth time. I felt literally empty for the few minutes I allowed myself to think about the fact that no matter how much we might want it, or pray for it, we'll never have our Thomas to snuggle with. And then I locked the vault and carried on.
I chatted with them after Mass and we made vague plans to get together for coffee one morning since she's only working part time now. I hope the plans don't stay vague though - I hope she wasn't just saying it to make me feel better. I would really love to get together with her and laugh our heads off one morning. And soon.
I hope she didn't see the sorrow in my eyes, and I hope if she did that it didn't frighten her too much. I hope I haven't scared away my old friend.