On our way home from the park yesterday, we ran into an old friend who lives around the corner from us. This friend was standing outside of his house holding a beautiful baby boy. We hadn’t seen each other in a while, and we were so excited to meet his new son. The baby is five months old, and so the conversation very quickly turned to the kind of story-swapping that parents do: is your baby sleeping through the night? How much does he weigh? Does he cry a lot?
It turns out that as far as first time parents go, he’s having a pretty easy time. His son is sleeping great at night, and the little guy has a great temperament. The baby smiled and laughed frequently when we were with him, and I have never seen our friend look happier or more proud. Our neighbor hadn’t seen our two for a while and he was amazed at how big they both were. I am pretty sure that the last time he saw them, Mercy was still mostly bald and Aaron was just a little lump in our Baby Bjorn. As we were getting ready to leave, I told him that if he ever needed a babysitter, I am home a lot and would be happy to take care of his little one.
As we turned onto Kenwood, I marveled at the complexity of the issues in our neighborhood, and at the humanity of them. You see, this friend is one of the young men I talk about who is at the center of much of the criminal activity we see here. The reason he has not seen our kids lately is that he has been incarcerated, and only recently released.
I am going to go through the boxes of Aaron’s clothes that he so quickly outgrew and pick out some outfits to take over this week to our friend. I hope that our family can be a part of this little boy’s life here.