My Girl, Your Boy

I was inspired to write the story below back in 1987. The images that flooded my mind as I pushed my baby daughter on a swing in the park were too vivid not to be developed into a short essay once I got home.

Over the years, my thoughts would return every so often to this story I’d written. I wondered about the very special boy who would someday steal my daughter’s heart. I would think about his mom, as well—and I just knew that she loved him as deeply as I love my girl. 

Yesterday, as I scrolled through my files, I stumbled upon “My Girl, Your Boy” again. And guess what? My story has become reality. That wonderful boy married my beautiful girl, and now, his mom and I are overjoyed to share twin grandbabies—a little boy and a little girl. 

My story has come full circle.


I am pushing my baby girl in a swing at the park when you first enter my mind.

It’s a perfect spring day: watercolor blue sky, warbling Robins, a breeze as soft as a whisper carrying a hint of new blooms, mown grass, clean wash on the line. 

The park unfolds at the foot of our street, just a few steps from our front door. The ancient swing set, anchored between thick iron chains, has wide leather seats that have been worn smooth from use over the years. There is also a tiny basket seat, tailor-made for babies. This park is perfect for us.

My seven-month-old girl is strapped into the basket seat. This is her first time on a swing and her feelings are evident—downy head flung back, mouth gaping open in a grin that bares two tiny white crescents breaking through the top gum. Her dimpled, sausage-roll legs jerk about and she squeals with each gentle push that I give her. The purity of her joy causes my heart rise into my throat. Out of the blue, I think of you.

Perhaps you, too, are in a park right at this moment, as your mother pushes you on a swing… or chases behind you as you creep with surprising stealth through the grass. I can feel you. I also know how helplessly, hopelessly, heels-over-head-over-heels in love your mom is with you as her eyes capture these fleeting images and preserve them in her mind: the curve of your elbows, the creases behind your knees, your round eyes sparkling with mischief as you pause, mid-crawl, to glance back at her over your shoulder.

I hope that she will teach you all the things that are truly important: please and thank you, the value of honesty, respect for others, respect for yourself. I hope she will prepare her boy just as I am preparing my girl.

In my mind, I reach out to her and we share a smile. I know that someday, she and I will laugh joyfully together across a kitchen table set for tea, as we bounce the grandchildren we share on our knees. I know that you, baby boy, and my baby girl are destined to share a wonderful life together, pushing park swings of your own.


Another summer’s end. Sigh.

With September upon us already, I can smell that fresh hint in the air of all the cool days soon to come. I’m a summer girl through and through. The changing seasons don’t interest me at all…I want my summer back!

With that said, here’s a poem that takes me back to childhood summers of an era long ago.

The Ice Cream Truck

It was such a long, long time ago,

When summers crept by long and slow,

Breakfast done, outdoors we’d play,

Till street lamps signaled end of day.

Building forts from lumber scraps,

With trash-bin treasures filling gaps.

Sprawled supine upon the grass,

Watching Heaven’s candy floss drift past.

Flushed with the joy of heavy play,

Anticipating that time of day,

When abandoning our mud-pie muck,

We’d flee to greet the ice cream truck.

Distant bells upon the breeze

Meant tearing home for nickels, please!

A jostling line aside the road,

Awaiting the truck and its cool, sweet load.

It wasn’t just the treats inside

That stoked our grins and pie-plate eyes,

It was a sensory amalgamation

That fed our mood of pure elation.

Organ tunes so sweet and merry,

Twinkling lights in pink and cherry,

A plastic ice cream sundae stood

In lifelike splendor on the hood.

Gold letters glittering in the sun,

Spelled “Yum! Good Eats For Everyone!”

And the jolly laughter on the breeze

Of driver, Gus, who loved to tease.

One by one we’d pay our dimes,

And up into the truck we’d climb.

Rooting through the freezer bin,

As Gus wisecracked and beamed his grin.

Clutching treasures cold and sweet,

Then back into the summer heat.

With a chuckle and a friendly wave,

Gus beeped the horn and rolled away.

Before he’d disappeared from sight,

We’d peeled, unwrapped and savoured bites,

Sticky hands and chocolate faces,

Returned to forts and far-off places.

How I miss those ice cream days.

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