We were stopped and handed a program. I explained quickly why we had come, to answer Noah's questions and see the tank. Our veteran was super friendly and struck up an easy conversation. He asked about my shirt and added he worked for an engineering firm, one that was always looking for ways to volunteer and become involved in outreach. We talked at length about the opportunities at the school and its engineering programs. He also offered for he and his wife to come and read with kids. He left us to get a business card for me. He rejoined us and sat down on a bench with us and shared stories about his grandsons.
It was such sweet encounter, reminded me of my own grandfather. And also of how quickly children grow up and precious our time with them is. I have been feeling a little lonely these days, I have been missing the ease of friendship pre children, and my friends that are far away. In my busyness of babies and toddlers and working I didn't put in the work to maintain those friendships I valued and now I wish I done a better job. Today this kind man showed me without knowing it, that loneliness is universal to a degree. At some point we all feel it. A working mother of young children longing for adult connections beyond social media and a loving grandfather of teenage grandsons longing for the memory filled younger days. Searching for connections. I hope he comes and volunteers as much as he can this fall and his heart is warmed by the children he meets. His kindness to a make up and shower-less mother did not go unnoticed or unappreciated.