My Funny Friend and Me

August 18, 2020

One year ago today I said goodbye to my best friend. He was my dog. He was mine, and he had been mine since he was just 7 weeks old. He was 16 when he died and he had lived a good, long life. He was an angel from heaven and he taught me how to love. He comforted me when I was sick or sad. Once when I had a terrible fever and was convulsing in chills, he stretched his whole body out on top of me to regulate my body temperature and stop me from shaking. When I would cry he would gently approach me and look into my eyes and lick my tears off my cheeks. When I was stressed about my son in the worst days of his disorders,  I would collapse into bed at the end of a day and just stare at the ceiling in shock from what I had witnessed and all I was feeling. And my dog would lie at the end of my bed, press his paws down on my left foot and he would lick that foot so soothingly that I would begin to calm down and could eventually sleep. Last year, after he died, I had his name tattooed on that spot.

His name was Baby Fish Mouth. He was legendary. He was one of a kind. He was my best friend and my constant companion. I miss him every single day.

After experiencing 9/11 in NYC, a lot of my friends wanted to get married or move out of the city or have a baby…I wanted a dog. I was fairly broken at that time in my life and had become a hardened woman. I lived a rich life, full of friends and adventures, but I was distant and couldn’t seem to feel things very deeply. Baby Fish Mouth changed that. He softened my heart. I had always been one of those people who liked a lot of personal space. But he was one of those dogs that did not. He would spoon with me at night, sit on my lap when I was sitting down, and was at my feet when I was standing up. He would follow me from room to room, and if I got engrossed in something that didn’t involve him, he would sit by me and grumble until I bent down and gave him a hug. Because of him, my heart opened up.  I began to cry at movies. I began to love snuggling with him. At night I would sing him songs as I rubbed his belly, and he would fall asleep. I would hold him like a baby and walk around my room singing. When we would go visit my parents and he would spend the day running around like a maniac, he would collapse on my lap at night, his arms and legs hanging off my body, in a dead sleep. 

He softened my heart. And after a few years with him, I wanted to open my heart more. I adopted my son and our family grew to 3. Rahul called Baby Fish Mouth his “dog-brother”. The first time Rahul walked in my house, he marched up to Baby and patted him on the head. They were friends ever after. The first time I ever heard Rahul say the words “I love you” it was whispered in Baby’s ear. Rahul (now 19) recently told me that the closest friend he ever had was Baby Fish Mouth. 

Of course, I knew Baby Fish Mouth wouldn’t live forever.  I used to whisper in his ear that I needed him to stay with me as long a he could. And that I really wanted him to try to live until Rahul went to college. He died one week before Rahul’s first day of freshman year at City College. He heard me. He listened to me. He taught me. When I had no one, I had him. When I was in pain he soothed me. 

I used to pray for him before I met him. I asked God to create a dog just for me. And when I went to meet this crazy litter of puppies — half pug, half terrier — I prayed that God would show me which one was mine. As I sat on the porch of the shelter in Connecticut where they were living, I reached out and petted each one. They were all tan, with short hair and sweet faces. Then this weirdo oddball came sauntering by, brindle, with long wiry hair. He was so tired that he was stumbling, so I picked him up and put him on my lap. He immediately fell asleep, with his nose tucked comfortably inside my elbow. The woman who ran the shelter looked down at him and said, “I think someone picked you!” That was the moment he became mine.

On the day he died — one year ago today — I wrapped my arms around him as he lay in the cart my friend José had bought for him, cushioned on Rahul’s childhood comforter, and I sang to him and thanked him for all he had given me. As the doctor inserted the needle in his arm that would stop his little heart, I whispered into his ear how much I loved him and my tears wet his head. I wanted him to leave this world knowing he had done what he came here to do. I wanted him to know he was not alone. And that he had changed my life completely.

Many years ago,my friend Winston and I did a small show here in NYC, where we covered the music of Sting. Each night, I ended the show with this song, dedicated to Baby Fish Mouth. My funny friend. My best friend.

My Funny Friend and Me, written by Sting. Performed by Renée Smith (vocals) and Winston Philip (keys).

Big Hug

August 13, 2019

Last night, for the third night in a row, I dreamt that an ex-boyfriend came to me and comforted me. Each night it has been a different one and I don’t have that many, so at this rate I’ll be done with these visitations by the end of the week. LOL. But this morning I got to wondering if there’s a message in these dreams. Maybe I need a big hug and my subconscious rolodex is sending me people who have been kind and loving to me in the past. It’s been a very emotional summer and I do think I might need some comforting.

Many chapters in my life are closing and it’s getting harder and harder to resist being swept away with waves of sadness. There’s a lot of happiness too, because of course as these chapters are closing, new ones are beginning! But this summer is about the transition and these chapters have meant the world to me.

Rahul graduated from high school, which was what started all this chapter closing. But also there are relationships that are ending; my trusty steed of a car is on it’s last leg (Please make it through one more season, Sally!); and my very best friend in the world, Baby Fish Mouth, is in his last days. I’m hoping he will continue to be comfortable and happy a little while longer, but his beautiful, long life is definitely coming to an end. I get to thinking about these things and I’m overwhelmed with emotion. I keep crying and talking and praying, but there’s still tons more sadness in this ridiculous heart of mine.

God has given me the most helpful gift, though, to help me in this transition. He has given me the most amazing friends. Collectively, they are my strength in weakness. And individually, each one gives me something special that I need. There’s the one who knows all of Rahul’s secrets and struggles and advises me in a way only a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who also accompanied me to India to get Rahul and can read my mind and finish all my sentences can. There’s the couple that sits with me as I pour out my heart and literally refer to a list as I detail all the problems and challenges in my life. There’s the friend that always picks up the phone to talk and pray with me. Like, almost daily. I don’t even know what her outgoing voicemail message sounds like! There’s the friend who before she moved to a different time zone, called me every Wednesday morning at 6am to pray. For years. There were times I would wait up all night with the phone in my hand because of the terrible things that were happening with Rahul that I needed to pray with her about. Now we have marathon catch-up phone calls every couple months where we talk and pray for hours and hours. It’s food to my soul. There’s the friend who is my partner in crime, always down to do fun things together: the ballet, rooftop bars, Broadway shows…it’s always a blast. But she also prays for me and mine more fiercely and specifically and faithfully than anyone. There’s the friend who makes me laugh harder than I have in a really long time with his texts full of ridiculous memes and gifs and who somehow finds something good about my heart even when I’m being rude and sarcastic. And another of my friends hands me a gift almost every time I see her! She heard me say I love tea and gave me a tea set; she saw I love journalling and hands me a new journal every time I turn around. I could go on and on, because God has blessed me incredibly. These people love me so much. I’m surrounded and protected by their love.

So you don’t need to visit me anymore, ex-boyfriends! Thanks, I’m good. I mean, anybody who wants to give me a hug, I will not turn you away. LOL. I’m doing my best to keep my head above the waves. But I need my friends right now to help me have the strength to move forward. And in them I’ve got everything I need to make it to the next chapter.


Baby Fish Mouth


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Usually when I meet a new client they will share a few things about themselves. Maybe they’ll tell me about their favorite haircut, their profession, their children…When I met Mary Ellen the first time she opened her eyes very wide, put her hand on her hip and said, very matter-of-factly, “I’m really into haiku, bookbinding and falconry!” My response was like, “Well! …OK! …Thanks for letting me know!” I could see right away that she was a passionate, creative, curious person, and I immediately wanted to know more about all of those hobbies. And her. What I didn’t envision was just how much this strange woman would weave her way into my life.

She was nearly 80 years old when I met her. And the best way I can describe her is tempestuous. She was a whirlwind and had boundless energy and passion. She would turn on you with no notice, then be singing your praises the next. Sometimes she would greet me at the door (I’m a mobile hairdresser) with a mouthful of vitriol about the doorman or her doctor or her neighbor; and sometimes she would fall into my arms in tears because she was frustrated and tired. She expected a lot from the people in her life, but she was also very grateful for her friends and loved ones.

I’m a person who is very comfortable saying “no” to people. I have a very intense life and I need to create boundaries around certain parts of myself, especially my work. I have hundreds of clients and I travel to several of them each day, usually at least 6 days per week. I don’t have time to dawdle between appointments, so as much as my clients sometimes want to visit with me or feed me or tell me their stories, I’m usually not able to fit that into my day. I love my clients and I really do enjoy spending time with them, but when their hair is finished, mama needs to be on her way! But somehow Mary Ellen pulled me into her life and I found myself scheduling time after her hair appointments to visit with her. Her stories are some of the most amazing I have ever heard. She lived a fascinating life and we found a lot of similarities between us. We both have had to hustle a lot to raise our kids and we both have given 100% to everything we put our hands to in life.

One day I got a call from her telling me she had broken her hip and was in a rehabilitation hospital and asking me (telling me) to come see her. Of course I came right away and somehow I soon found myself overseeing her bathroom renovation (she needed a walk-in shower). So much for my boundaries! Soon after her hip started mending she discovered she had cancer. And she knew that was going to be the thing that took her down, as it had to almost everyone else in her family. She was resolved to make the most of her remaining days and I found myself helping her hire a companion to take her to her second home up in Canada one more time. And once she got back from that trip she declined fairly rapidly. I was no longer doing her hair anymore, but I would go see her every few days, just to hang out and talk and help her with whatever I could around the house.

One day I arrived to see her, not knowing if I would be permitted in. She was at the very end and I assumed only family would be with her. But I was invited in and told she had just gone to bed and was pretty sedated on pain killers at the moment. When I went into her bedroom, there she was sitting on the edge of her bed. She turned and saw me with glassy eyes and a slow smile crept over her face. “You came!” she said. Tears rolled down my cheeks as I helped her lie down and cover up for her nap. I lay my hand on her shoulder as she drifted off to sleep and felt an enormous wave of gratitude wash over me. What a gift to have known this woman. And what a gift to have a brief, lucid moment with her at the end. She passed on a few days later.

That was over a year ago, and tonight I got to share about her and lead a prayer at her memorial service. Her family generously invited people from all the areas of her life to celebrate her and share about her. Mary Ellen had a lot of special items, decorative or useful in her home, and her sons brought many of them to the service for guests to choose from so each of us could have something to remember her by. She had given me a special gift from her collection before she passed, so I didn’t have in mind to take anything. But then I saw something that reminded me of the first thing she ever said to me about her unique hobbies. And I took a book she had bound. I plan to fill it with prayers and drawings and the contents of my own tempestuous, passionate heart.


To read and experience Mary Ellen’s amazing stories, check out her unique memoir:

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After Rahul had been home with me for several months I settled into a new job that allowed me to be closer to home and have a shorter workday.  I had already become accustomed to spending my every waking moment caring for his especially intense needs as he adjusted to life with me and began to heal from past trauma.  One night, my friend Tamika come to our apartment.  I knew life wasn’t going so well for her right then, but I was so engrossed in Rahul’s very exigent needs, that I hardly noticed what was going on with any of my friends.  I was thrilled that Tamika had come by, but we ended up spending our entire evening helping Rahul through a particularly harrowing crisis.  As Tamika left that night I thanked her from the bottom of my heart for caring for my child so lovingly and spending a night giving help when I knew she needed it just as much.  I watched her walk down the hall and felt a sinking feeling that I should be doing more to help her, but I didn’t know how.

A few days later I had a very unique and cherished opportunity to spend 2 hours by myself.  Rahul was asked to join an after school ESL program and I knew he would try it out at least once.  For even one session it would be worthwhile to get him some extra help and I’d get have a few hours to breathe.

I came home from work that day and sat down at my desk, staring at the huge pile of bills and papers I had been barely tending to.  My goal during these next 2 hours was going to be to get through to the bottom of the stack!  I opened my computer and before beginning my serious tasks I went to Facebook.  I really hated Facebook, because each time I scrolled through friends’ happy status updates about how their lives were so much easier and less oppressive than mine I wanted to throw the computer across the room! Facebook just made me feel bitter.  I spent several months ignoring it completely, but I had a friend I’d been trying to track down for years who had just found me on Facebook and I was thrilled to reconnect with her.  We were writing messages back and forth to one another, so I was in the habit at the time of checking into Facebook every day.

This particular day I looked for a message from my friend and finding none, scrolled down through my news feed.  A few messages down I saw Tamika’s status, which read, Goodbye.  My heart stopped.  What time had she written it? Hours ago!  Frantically, I scrolled down to the comments her other friends had written.  Did they know what she meant? No. There were several comments like, I didn’t know you were heading out of town! Where are you going? 

I knew what she meant.  Goodbye.  Forever.

Several years earlier I had been the first person Tamika had called when she woke up after an unsuccessful suicide attempt.  She was such a dear friend to me and I was terrified and heartbroken that she was so sad and lost.  She went into treatment and worked very hard at healing.  And she had been doing really well, until her mom passed away.

I had learned of her mom’s passing one summer night when I called Tamika to tell her about a show I had just seen.  After talking for a while, I asked her where she was.  On a plane, she said.  My mom died.  I was stunned.  After talking for a while I decided to try to get a flight down to Louisiana the next day, so I could support her.  But as soon as I woke up the next morning I got the life-changing news that my son had been found and I was going to be Rahul’s mom!  That news started me on a race to get a thesis paper’s worth of paperwork triple-notarized and sent to India so I wouldn’t lose him.  I sent flowers to Tamika instead.

As I stared at the word Goodbye on Facebook that fateful day I felt I might be the only person who knew what was happening.  I immediately called her and got her voice mail.  “Call me”, I said.  “I just read your Facebook message.”  I clicked on Tamika’s homepage and learned I wasn’t the only one who knew.  A friend of hers from Louisiana had written this message: HELP!!!!!!!!!!! TAMIKA HAS TAKEN PILLS AND IS TRYING TO KILL HERSELF AND I DON’T KNOW HER ADDRESS!!!!!!!!!!

I know her address!  A few weeks earlier I had ordered a few Christmas cards to send out and after addressing them to various family members I had one left.  I asked Rahul whom we should send it to and we decided on Tamika.  It would be her first Christmas without her mom and I thought it would cheer her up.  She had just moved, so I called her and got her new address.

As I started to write back to her Facebook friend, my phone rang.  It was Tamika.  Thank God she is alive.  I answered and although she was alive, she was not well.  She was slurring her words and not making any sense.  While I listened I picked up my other phone and dialed 911.  I was grateful to have a second phone — I had only bought it one day earlier.  I was able to keep her talking while I gave the 911 operator her address.  When she heard that I was sending help, she hung up on me.

My hands were shaking as I finished writing back to her Louisiana friend to say that I had Tamika’s address and had called the police.

My phone rang again and this time it was the police.  They were at Tamika’s door and she wasn’t answering so they were going to leave.  “NO!” I shouted!  I dialed Tamika again and she picked up.  Go open your door! I said to her.  “She’s there!” I said to the police on my other ear.  “I’m talking to her right now.”  A moment later I heard Tamika’s roommate (who had been sleeping and was awakened by the banging on the door) answer the door.  I heard the police questioning her and they rushed her into an ambulance.  I hung up both phones and took a deep breath.

I thought for a second and realized there was one more thing I could do.  I knew Tamika’s therapist, Tina.  That’s because she had been my therapist first and I had recommended her to Tamika.   In all the years I had known Tina she never once picked up the phone when I called her office.  That day when I dialed her number, she picked up the phone.  “Renee! So great to hear from you!  How are things going with your son!”  “Tina, Tamika is on her way to the hospital.  She took a bunch of pills this morning.  Do you know her psychiatrist? Could you find out what medication she is on?”  “Oh my God.” She said.  “Yes, I do know him and I will call him right now.  Thanks for letting me know.”

Ask I hung up with Tina my phone rang again and this time it was Tamika’s friend from Louisiana.  She was so relieved to get my message and she explained how she had called the NYPD earlier in the day, but because she didn’t know where Tamika lived they couldn’t do anything.  And then she had to pick up her son from kindergarten and had just had to leave that desperate message on Tamika’s Facebook page praying someone would see it.  I realized it was time for me to go pick up my son from school also.  But before I left I got one more call.  Tina called back to say she had gotten in touch with Tamika’s psychiatrist, they had tracked down which hospital she was admitted to and talked to the ER doctors at the hospital.  They had caught her in time and she would recover.  Hallelujah!  There was now nothing else I could do, so I went to pick up Rahul.

To make a long story short, Tamika received wonderful care and worked very hard to heal.  She is a new person today,  solid and happy.   I’m going to her wedding in May!

When I think back to all the stars that aligned that day. The timing of that one afterschool class Rahul took—literally the only 2 hours I had to myself for months.  The online reunion with the friend who gave me a reason to check my Facebook page.  The extra phone I had just bought.  The address I had just procured from Tamika.  The therapist I knew personally who answered the phone.  God put me in the right place at the right time, with the right tools and the right knowledge, to help to save my friend.

Serendipity.  Provident serendipity.

(And I don’t hate Facebook anymore.)



Me and Tamika:)

*By the way, in case you are wondering, Tamika gave me her blessing to tell our story.



January 14, 2013

Today is my Dad’s birthday.  There are millions of things I love about him!  Here are a few:

When I was about 5 years old my best friend Kyle told me about a monster that had appeared in his room from under his bed one night. He said as he lay in bed a big hand had reached up from under the bed and grabbed him!  I suggested that maybe it had only been a dream, but he insisted it was the absolute truth and scared me out of my wits.  That night when I went to bed I told my Dad how scared I was that there was a monster under my bed that was going to reach up and grab me. He soothed me and told me Kyle had just had a nightmare.  Once I was calm he turned out the lights and left the room.  A few moments later I heard my Mom scolding my Dad from the hallway, “Buuuuuzzz??” At the same time I saw a huge hand reaching toward me from under my bed!  I screamed, but instantly I knew it was my Father who had crawled back into my room and under my bed to reach his hand up to scare me!  Now, another child might have been scarred for life.  But I honestly don’t think I lost a moment’s sleep over being scared again in my life–ever.

When my first love went off to college I was still in high school.  After coming home from delivering him to the start of his sophomore year, I was heartbroken and trying to hold it together through dinner.  We used to have rather formal dinners at our house.  Dining room, candles, wine, interesting music, etc.  At one point I excused myself and went out to the kitchen under the pretense of getting something.  Instead, I stood in the corner and quietly sobbed with my face in my hands.  A moment later I felt big, strong arms surrounding me–my dad had sensed that I was upset and had followed me from the table to give me a hug.  I love that I didn’t have to speak my troubles or make a scene, he just knew what I needed in that moment.

When I was preparing to adopt Rahul my Dad announced he wanted to come with me to India and I was thrilled!  It was a pretty emotional experience (to say the least) and there is no one who steadies me like him.  Besides that, Rahul instantly fell in love with him.


Need I say more?

Happy Birthday Buzz!

Remembering Mr. Doyle

January 10, 2012

I moved to Riverdale (Bronx) about a month before I adopted Rahul.  I had worked here and knew the neighborhood, but the month prior to Rahul’s arrival was chaotic to say the least, so I had no time to meet my neighbors or make friends.


When I went to India to get Rahul, my best friend Libby and my Dad came with me.  It was an incredible trip and when it came time to move Rahul out of his orphanage and get him set to travel, he was incredibly distraught.  Several thousand blog posts couldn’t accurately describe his anguish and my terror.  I was beyond grateful that my Dad and Libby were there to help me.  It was at the very least, a three person job to soothe Rahul and get him on the plane in a happy state of mind.


Rahul loved my Dad right off the bat.  He felt comfortable with him and trusted him, so I asked my Dad to stick around my place for a few extra days after the rest of the family (visiting to welcome Rahul) left.  When he finally packed up his bags to go, I snuck him out the door with vague directions to the train station (my mom had taken the car).  We didn’t want Rahul to notice he had left –which, of course, was a terrible idea.  I distracted Rahul and my Dad went out the door to fend for himself.  He asked the first person he saw how to get to the train station (I think I had given him the number for a taxi service–what a terrible daughter I am!!!!).  Thankfully, the first person he saw was someone who was to become one of the most cherished neighbors I have ever had.  He introduced himself as Mr. Doyle and that is who he has always been to me, despite his many attempts to get me to call him Dennis.  When my Dad asked him for directions, Mr. Doyle offered to drive him to the train. Now, in other cities, this may be a typical act of neighborly assistance, but in New York City–in the BRONX–not so much.  My Dad was certainly blown away by this act of kindness, and he got a chance to tell me all about it a half hour later when I called him crying because Rahul was freaking out at his absence.  I made my poor Dad get in a taxi and come all the way back to my place for a few more days.  Those were some rough days. Thanks Buzz:)


Mr. Doyle quickly became a trusted friend and neighbor to me.  I have always described him as a displaced beach bum, although he never lived on the beach.  He wore shorts until the weather dipped below zero, was incredibly laid back and always seemed like he might be just a little bit drunk.  He was one of those people who miraculously appeared to me whenever I was in need.  When I was shoveling the snow off my car, he was there to lend me a hand.  When I was late to pick up Rahul from school he happened to be driving by me and drove me to PS 24 in half the time it would have taken me to walk.  He had jumper cables at the ready when my car’s battery petered out, and in fact, several days after charging up my Jeep, he knocked on my door to tell me he had just bought me a new battery and put it in my car for me!!  When a tire was low, he’d knock on my door.  When my radiator fluid was running low, he would appear, then disappear to “borrow” someone’s bottle of radiator fluid from our garage, then reappear and replenish my supply.


I am not an easy person to take care of.  I have been on my own since I was 17 and am incredibly independent.  Mr. Doyle knew this about me and I always felt he respected me for it, but at the same time, he was always looking out for me.  He was often at the door of the building to open it when I had my arms full.  I remember taking my dog out for a walk one day when Rahul was particularly struggling, running into Mr. Doyle and just crying and telling him my woes.  Once, I came home to find that my lock had broken and needed to be replaced. I called a locksmith and settled in the lobby to wait for him.  Lo and behold Mr. Doyle walked in the door and waited with me for the hour or so it took for the locksmith to come.  On Christmas there would always be an S&S Cheesecake hanging on my door with a card signed “Mr. Doyle”.


I loved talking with Mr. Doyle–I called him the Mayor of Riverdale.  He knew everybody’s story.  Riverdale had seemed like a bland place until Mr. Doyle started telling me stories about some of the people here.  I could name anyone in the neighborhood and he could tell me something about them.  He was good-natured–all stories were told with a wink and a smile.  His way of letting anything roll off his back helped me to let go of some frustrations I had with people.


And for all his knowledge of other people, he was a very private person.  I never exactly knew what he did for a living, although I asked him outright several times.  I invited him to every gathering I ever had at my house and he never came.  I knew that he loved going to the races.  He loved riding his bike all over creation.  Nothing could make me happier than when he would quote Bible verses to me verbatum.  He would pop them out at the least likely times, and despite the fact that he meant them in jest, they were actually very meaningful to me.


The last time I spent time with Mr. Doyle was when I was in my mad race to get to Disney this past August (see blog post on the subject).  I went to him when I needed a ride to the dog kennel to drop Baby off.  I knocked on his door, asked him for help, and his reply was, “What time do you you need me?”  Of course he was there for me, and drove us through the Hurricane Irene flooding to get Baby to the kennel.  I told him about my crazy plight over the weekend and he just laughed and quoted some Bible verse and sent me on my way.


Unbeknownst to me, a few days later he was diagnosed with an illness that took his life on December 16th.  Our whole building reeled at the news.  What he was to me, he also was to everyone else.  He was a neighbor who didn’t just live in proximity to you–he also became a part of your life.  He will always be a huge part of my story.  A reminder that good, loving people still do exist.  That everyone has a story.  That its better to let trouble roll off your back.  That there are needs all around, every day, and by meeting them, you can change someone’s life.



My nephew Jack is what I call a deep thinker.  He’s 7 and ever since he started talking he’s been astounding me with his sensitivity and profundity.


When he first learned to talk, he would come up to me or any other family member and draw you away from the crowd into another room where you could have a heart to heart talk.  He was mostly speaking nonsense words, but he would draw up next to you in a chair and it was like he was telling you his deepest secrets.


Then when he learned to REALLY talk he would go on and on forever about what it was like in my sister’s womb before he was born and at first it was kind of cute and charming.  Then it kinda got creepy.  He sounded so all knowing and he would go on forever that it was like he wasn’t making it up.  And finally my sister would have to demand that he stop talking about it!


When he lost his first tooth he called to tell me and after giving me the basic details he went on to ask me (unprompted) about my recent move into a new apartment and what it looked like, how I was doing, etc.  I mean, we as adults have a hard time getting over ourselves long enough to ask how our friends are doing when we have big news. How did this 5 year old get it?


One of my favorite conversations with him took place about 6 months before Rahul came home with me.  Jack was 5 and he and I went for a walk.  And after a while he invited me to sit down for some deep conversation.  He wanted to talk about my adopting Rahul and after a few minutes he said,” I want to badopt a child someday.  Because sometimes parents can’t take care of their children anymore and then I could take care of them instead.”  And he went on and on about the service work he wanted to do for people in need and I sat there floored.  In all the conversations I have ever had about adoption no one has ever so succinctly summed up my own motivation for adopting.


So this weekend when he came to my son’s birthday party (YAY Rahul turned 10!!!) we played this game where I made up little clues about each guest and they had to guess who it was.  Jack’s was one of the first to be read, and most of the kids didn’t know him.  But when the first line of the clue read, “I am a deep thinker…” I could see from Jack’s face that he knew the clue described him. Later in the evening he and I were chatting and he had me read him his clue again. And then he told me that he’s pretty sure that he gets his deep thinking from me.  Now, his parents clearly have passed this gene to him–they are highly intelligent and very sensitive people.  But I’m glad he sees that we have kindred spirits!


And all day I have been striving to think the deepest thoughts possible.


Jack and moi


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