Dad and I are at home. The front door opens. You walk in. We stare in disbelief. Our hands fly to our mouths. Our breath comes out ragged.
You look at us quizzically.
“Mom? Dad?” you say, stopping uncertainly in the middle of the room.
“What happened to you? You look so…” your eyes scan our faces in disbelief. “So. Old.”
We move towards you as if you are an apparition. We approach, tentatively, afraid you’ll vaporize before our eyes.
You don’t. We encircle you. We touch your face, your hair, your arms, your chest, your nose, your eyelids, your lips.
You stand, docile, allowing us to smooth your hair and rub your skin.
We hug you between us. We cry, we sob, we laugh. We hold you tight. So tight.
You look at us in wonder.
You look at us like you haven’t seen us in an eternity.
You melt into us as we enfold you in our arms.