Sadness about the angels who must forget what they are in order to be here. Tiny ones gathered in my daughter’s cheek to pad her from when the kindergartner had a seizure and dropped her onto the floor. The incident replayed over and over again in my mind keeping me from sleeping, my husband turned away from me, furious about the whole thing. “Where is your mind?” he kept asking earlier, as I lay under the blankets in hot tears. I didn’t speak but thought what good a mind would do in a situation in God’s, and God’s angels’, hands. Everything had happened so fast—everything but me taking Qoey out of the dazed girl’s arms—I was kneeling next to her chair giving out heart stickers to the other three girls, “Because after the Ten Commandments, Christ came to teach us how to love.” Then, when I turned to S and asked her where she wanted her little blue sparkly heart, no answer. “S?” I looked at her eyes staring up at the lights. The dread came in and I reached for Qoey a split second too late, as the girl released the baby from her care and fell to the hard-carpeted floor. Screams. Instantly I picked up Qoey and still had the tiny sticker on my thumb. In shock, I stuck it to the girl’s little hand and asked her if she was okay. She nodded, but I found out from Amy later that when she dazes she just sort of forgets what she was doing, so likely didn’t even know what had happened to her or that she had dropped the baby. Or that she got a sticker for dropping the baby.
Right away I started caressing Qoey and kissing her, who was so scared from the whole thing. I’d never heard her cry so violently, as if the motion of being flung from safety was now part of her. Thank the Lord that the crying abated shortly; she wasn’t hurt, just shell-shocked. I remember seeing the faces of the other girls who were walking away to do their music lesson. None of them said a word but they all just looked at me and Qoey as they walked away. Did I expect something different? Yes, I was upset at the whole thing and felt so sorry that that had happened to my little girl and that I let a girl who gets seizures hold her for a minute, and it would have been comforting to have at least one of them—all who had held Qoey moments before S had—offer something: an “Is she okay?”; a kiss to the baby’s saving cheek; a heart sticker. Their stunned silences as they retreated from the room were as acrid as if they were to have laughed at the baby’s cries. What were they thinking? Probably nothing, like I told Joshua later on about what was going through my mind. It was just a moment in time that was out of control, and then it was over.
© 2015, Amaya Engleking